Kennedy took up her position at Saturday night’s convention and vowed to maintain the standards set by her predecessor Ger Lane.
“I’m honoured and humbled to be in this position and I’d like to thank all those who supported and helped me in recent weeks.
“I acknowledge that I’m the first woman to be elected to the executive of the board but I don’t think that should be the focus of my election. I just think it shows that anyone can be elected and it’s an open field. I need to mention my club Killeagh as I owe them a huge debt of gratitude for their support and also the support of my family.
“My only regret is that my father is not here to witness it as I know he’d be proud.
“I had a worthy adversary in John Corcoran for this position and I’d like to thank him for his graciousness in phoning me after the election to congratulate me. I also want to pay tribute to the outgoing PRO Ger Lane who has set the bar so high that it’ll be very difficult to match. He was so progressive and innovative and I vow to maintain the standards that he has set.”
Meanwhile new Cork county board chairman Bob Ryan appealed for assistance to be given to young players emerging from college in their search for employment.
“Our young people have to be given opportunity to play their native games,’’ he said.
“Every avenue has to be explored to maintain our strong position as the only Irish sporting association that promotes games and culture.”
Tributes were made on Saturday night to outgoing chairman Jerry O’Sullivan who stepped down as an officer of the board after 14 years of service. He called for greater efforts to be made to ensure club activity does not grind to a halt during the summer months. “I cannot understand why most of our activity ceases during the summer months, particularly when it comes to league games. My opinion is that players would be better off playing more games than training.
“We also seriously need to bring the fun and enjoyment back to our games. There have been difficulties in recent years with club fixtures but the inter-county scene can cause major problems in fixing games. The introduction of the backdoor system is the biggest culprit in that regard. I can assure everyone that every possible effort is made to avoid these problems.”
Tributes were also paid to Lane for his work as PRO over the last three years and John Motherway whose five-year term as county referees administrator drew to a close. As well as Kennedy, Brendan O’Driscoll was ratified as the board’s new Coaching Officer while Tony O’Mahony was ratified as the new President.
Cork GAA Executive 2012: President Tony O’Mahony (Ballinora); Chairman Bob Ryan (Inniscarra); Vice-chairman Ger Lane (Bride Rovers); Secretary Frank Murphy (Blackrock); Treasurer Pearse Murphy (Adrigole); PRO Tracey Kennedy (Killeagh); Development Officer Diarmuid Gowen (Fermoy); Children’s Officer Marc Sheehan (Aghabullogue); Cultural Officer Liam Ó Laochdha (Youghal); Coaching Officer Brendan O’Driscoll (CIT).