THE odds on Tracey Kennedy becoming the first vice-chair of Cork GAA shortened last night with confirmation that her main rival for the position has withdrawn from the race.
Cork GAA PRO Ms Kennedy and Rebel Óg chair Marc Sheehan were considered the primary contenders vieing for the County Board’s vice-chair position, soon to be vacated by chairman-elect Ger Lane.
However Mr Sheehan, the Board’s children’s officer, confirmed this week he will be shortly be taking up a school principal position in Galway and will not be a candidate for the vice-chair of the Board on this occasion.
Mr Sheehan is currently in charge of Vicarstown NS, but will shortly take up a corresponding position in a new school, St. Annin’s NS in Rosscahill, near Moycullen, 12 miles west of Galway city. He recently married Caitríona Stokes, an official with the Department of Children & Youth Affairs based in Galway.
An able administrator, he was chair of his own Aghabullogue GAA club at 23 for four years, succeeding his father, John. More recently, he was the secretary of a key Cork strategic planning committee which oversaw the restructuring of the underage sector and the establishment of Rebel Óg three years ago.
His exit from the race does not mean an end to involvement in Cork GAA, but it strengthens the chances of delegates electing a first ever female vice-chair at Convention on December 14th.
Killeagh’s Tracey Kennedy is the well-regarded public relations face of the GAA in Cork, and along with recent predecessors, has succeeded in altering the public perception of Páirc Ui Chaoimh in the wake of damaging player strikes. However her election is by no means a formality with Duhallow’s Richard Murphy — a Cork delegate to Munster Council — also a possible candidate for the position. Ex-PRO Ger Lane is expected to be unanimously elected new Cork chair at convention, with Bob Ryan stepping down after his three-year term.
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