Three winners, two from Cork, were awarded National Leadership Awards at a gala event in Dublin last week.
Eilís Ahern of Carrigaline Macra, Seandún, and Marie Murphy of Freemount Macra, Avondhu, along with Colm Stenson of South Leitrim Macra, took the prestigious titles at a ceremony in the Irish Farm Centre.
In all, six finalists were chosen from clubs across the country, with Noel Duffy of Ferbane/Banagher Macra, Co Offaly, Gráinne O’Reilly, Ramor Macra, Cavan, and Joan Marie Healy, Berrings Macra, Muskerry, Co Cork, also making the shortlist.
The awards recognise the leadership skills of Macra members within their clubs and wider communities.
The competition raises the level and standard of leadership in Macra and provides an incentive for the development of club programmes.
The six finalists were judged by a panel including Peter Byrne, chief executive of FRS Network; Mary Cunningham, director of the National Youth Council of Ireland; and Neil Keane, president of the Agricultural Science Association.
Teddy Cashman, IFA’s liquid milk chairman and chairman of the National Dairy Council, was guest speaker at the final.
Mr Cashman farms at Whites Cross, near Cork City, and supplies year-round liquid milk to Dairygold/ Glanbia.
He is well respected among farmers, dairies, and retailers. His aim is to secure high- quality, locally-produced fresh milk for local consumers by gaining recognition from dairies and retailers for supply arrangements, which allow specialist year-round suppliers of fresh milk to cover their costs and earn a reasonable wage.
Macra national president, Seán Finan, congratulating the winners said: “This competition recognises the hard work and commitment of our young leaders who play a major role in our organisation and who often go on to hold positions in other national organisations.
“Dating back to 1982, previous winners of the competition include current government ministers and business leaders.”
The three winners were presented with specially commissioned commemorative trophies and will represent Macra on various international travel opportunities throughout the year.
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