Kilroy visits Dublin, Ireland and its city council

FEATURE ARTICLE from THE PRESS, 7-25-01, By Melissa Linebrink

``AVON -- Two weeks ago, Avon Councilman Jack Kilroy, returned from a two-week vacation in Ireland. The main purpose of the trip was to show his 76-year-old mother, Mary Kilroy, of Euclid, where her father grew up. However, the vacation was not solely to take a trip down memory lane.

Kilroy, who stayed in Dublin, has a friend, Christy Burke, who is a 16-year member of Dublin City Council. The two became friends when Burke was traveling in the United States promoting the Irish peace process.

"We had common interests and became friends and correspondents," Kilroy said. "I expressed an interest in attending a city council meeting to Christy and he arranged for me to be introduced at the meeting by the Lord Mayor and also introduced me to several of his colleagues."

Observing its picturesque landscaping, Kilroy said much of Ireland consists of an agricultural lifestyle. However, Kilroy noted that Ireland has modernized in the past 15 years, ...

Kilroy said the pace of life outside Dublin is different in the sense that people are not quick to adapt to the news ways of life.

People are more friendly and there is less reliance on electricity, he said.

One main difference between Ireland and the United States is people drive on the opposite side of the road and the steering wheel is also on the opposite side of the car ...

Another difference between the two countries is the government.

Kilroy explained that Dublin, the country's capital, was established as a permanent settlement in 841 A.D. and elected its first mayor in 1229. Today, Dublin employs a city manager and its Lord Mayor. The Lord Mayor is selected by a vote of the city council and there are five political parties represented in the council, which also includes independent members.

The biggest difference is the size of the council. It s bigger than our State Senate, he said.

Kilroy noted that there are similar issues faced by both Dublin City Council and Avon City Council.

Dublin is currently facing rapid growth, as is Avon.

According to Kilroy, since Dublin is thousands of years old, the historic streets can no longer meet the daily demand of vehicles driven on the roads. In addition, Dublin, as much as Ireland does, values its history and the idea of ruining the historic roads is causing some concern for its residents.

Dublin also has to deal with budgeting for road pavements and sewer systems and controlling pollution in its streets, Kilroy explained.

Kilroy said while his family, wife, Candace, son, Sean and his mother, were visiting Ireland, they also took some time to sightsee.

They visited St. Patrick Cathedral, Hook Lighthouse and visited the seashore.

"Ireland is every bit as beautiful as the postcards show, but the mass media's images are distorted," he said. "It's a friendly English speaking country."

NEWS ARTICLE from The PRESS, 6-13-01, By Mike Ferrari

``AVON -- The August filing deadline for the Avon Council and mayoral election is quickly approaching ...

Councilman Jack Kilroy ... is going to abandon his mayoral run and pursue another term in Ward IV.

Kilroy has been on council for three and a half years and said that he originally became interested in council following the Jacob's Group announcement of the Vista project several years ago ...

"That is my intention as I speak to you," Kilroy said of his intentions to seek another term on council ... "I ve always been involved in community activities where I've lived -- I didn't see my role in the council as much as I did involvement in the community."

"I saw a vacuum and important need to put myself forward, so I did ..." ''

NEWS ARTICLE from The Chronicle-Telegram, 5-8-02, By Jeff Mohrman

``Kilroy resigns from grassroots group he helped start

LORAIN -- Jack Kilroy, the executive director of the non-profit Grassroots Leadership Development Program since it began, has resigned.

The program began in 1994.

"Jack built a terrific organization," Mary Santiago, Grassroots board chairman, said in a news release.

"His vision and leadership helped empower more than 300 community activists and their community-based organizations to further their vision and mission. Jack was successful in bringing about unprecedented collaboration and partnership in Lorain County through his work with Grassroots and succeeded in changing our region s definition of leadership."

Grassroots provides leadership training for other nonprofit groups.

Kilroy resigned Friday. He also is an at-large councilman in Avon ...

Kilroy said he wants to pursue other interests, such as his own private law practice in Avon Lake and being a political consultant. He also is campaign manager for Sue Morano, a Democrat who will seek Sen. Jeffry Armbruster s seat in November.

"Having worked there nearly 8 1/2 years, there was a lot that has been accomplished," Kilroy said. "The staff is in place now. The staff that I developed there is highly capable to run the program."

"I think there has been a whole huge amount of achievements," he said. "There have been a lot of organizations that have flourished with our assistance."

Kilroy said that during his tenure, Grassroots brought in more than $500,000 the county would not have received otherwise.

"I left behind close friends on the staff," he said. "I had a great opportunity and things really worked well." ''

Contact Jeff Mohrman at

Avon to 1974

Avon Sketches -- Top -- Home -- What's New