THIS year’s New Year’s Honours list has included several Irish people.
The highest profile figure is Michael O’Neill (47), manager of the Northern Ireland soccer team, who receives an MBE ‘for services to football and the community in Northern Ireland’.
O’Neill’s career has included playing for Northern Ireland followed by spells managing Brechin City and Shamrock Rovers.
He was appointed Northern Ireland boss in late 2011 and guided the North to their first major tournament in 30 years with qualification to the Euro 2016 finals.
The team progressed as far as the group stage.
O’Neill, who is from Portadown, said of his award: “It’s a fantastic honour and totally unexpected to be honest…This award comes at the end of 2016 but it’s actually a great way to start 2017 – that will give me inspiration and motivation to continue to do everything possible to try to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.”
Paralympic gold medallist Bethany Firth from Co. Down has been awarded an MBE after her success in winning three gold medals and a silver at two Paralympic Games, the most recent in Rio 2016.
Maureen Sherman is also awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to young people and sport.
Michael Conway, CEO of FM Conway in Kent received an OBE for services to British construction, infrastructure support and road safety.
Bernie Ryan received an OBE for her work as Directorate Manager, St Mary’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre, Manchester. Her award is ‘for services to supporting people affected by sexual assault’.
Crewe United chairman Tom McKenna, originally from the North of Ireland, is awarded a BEM for football and cross-community reconciliation.
The New Year’s Honours List also includes MBEs for John Allen (athletics in Northern Ireland), Kathleen McBride (sport and the community in Coleraine) and Robert Northridge (rowing and community relations in Northern Ireland).
Dromore Athletic Club coach Michael McGreevy is awarded a BEM for services to sport and the community in Dromore, Co. Down.
More than 100 people from the North were honoured, they include…
Professor John Vincent MCCANNY, CBE For services to Higher Education and Economic Development. (Down) Knighthood
Companions of the Order of the Bath
Sue, Mrs MCALLISTER Lately Director General, Northern Ireland Prison Service. For services to the NI Prison Service. (Leicestershire) Dame
Leo Columba Martin O’REILLY Permanent Secretary, Department for Communities, Northern Ireland Executive.
Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
Derek Andrew MCCLURE For services to Mental Healthcare and People with Learning Disabilities.
Gerard MCGINN Chairman, Strategic Investment Board. For services to the Northern Ireland Economy
Trevor Arthur Stanley BUCHANAN Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon, Royal Victoria Hospital Belfast. For services to Healthcare in Northern Ireland and voluntary Medical service in South Sudan
Ms Anne Marie DUFFY Lately Director of Qualifications, Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment. For services to Education in Northern Ireland.
Samuel Bernard GOLDBLATT For services to Business in Northern Ireland
Barry Martyn LOWRY Director, IS Shared Services and Strategy, Northern Ireland Executive. For services to Government Service
Angela, Mrs MCLERNON Chief Executive, Northern Ireland Practice and Education for Nurses and Midwives. For services to Nursing.
Anthony Christopher O’NEILL For services to the Agri-Food Sector in Northern Ireland
Professor Sally WHEELER Professor of Law and Head of the School of Law, Queen’s University Belfast. For services to Higher Education in Northern Ireland.
Dr William Benjamin WILSON For services to the Voluntary and Charitable Sectors in Northern Ireland.
Members of the Order of the British Empire
Pastor Brian Cameron AGNEW For voluntary service to the community in Northern Ireland.
John ALLEN For services to Athletics in Northern Ireland.
John Raymond ARMSTRONG Managing Director, Armstrong Medical Limited. For services to Economic Development in Northern Ireland.
Sandra, Mrs BIDDLE Director, Foyle School of Speech and Drama. For services to Speech and Drama in Northern Ireland.
Alex BUNTING For services to the Support of Victims and Survivors in Northern Ireland.
Stella, Mrs CUMMINGS Northern Ireland Vice President, British Red Cross. For voluntary service to First Aid and the community in Northern Ireland.
Basil DALTON Head of School, North West Regional College. For services to Further Education in Northern Ireland.
Sister Rose DEVLIN For services to Improving Community Relations in Schools in Northern Ireland.
Simon Thomas Alexander DOUGAN, DL Chef and Managing Director, The Yellow Door Ltd. For services to Hospitality and Catering in Northern Ireland.
Edward George ELLIOTT For voluntary service to the Royal Ulster Constabulary George Cross Foundation and Association and the community in Northern Ireland.
Dr Robert Welby HENRY For services to Medicine and the Sport of Horse Racing in Northern Ireland.
Kenneth Robert LOGAN Grade 7, Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland. For services to Health and Safety and the community in Northern Ireland.
Michael Patrick MCALISTER Deputy Director and Head of Curriculum and Business Development, South West College. For services to Further Education in Northern Ireland.
William John MCCANN Managing Director, Willowbrook Foods Limited. For services to the Food Industry and the community in Northern Ireland.
William Graham MCCRORY Detective Superintendent, Police Service of Northern Ireland. For services to Policing and the community.
Brenda, Mrs MORGAN Partnership Manager, British Airways. For services to Economic Development in Northern Ireland.
Robert Hamilton NORTHRIDGE For services to Rowing and Community Relations in Northern Ireland.
Thomas Neville ORR, DL Governor, Strabane Academy. For services to Education in Northern Ireland.
Paula Ann, Mrs PHILPOTT Head of Learning Academy, South Eastern Regional College. For services to Further Education in Northern Ireland.
Order of the British Empire Medallist of the Order of the British Empire
Dr Lavinia BOYCE For services to the community in Northern Ireland.
Pauline Alice Frances, Mrs CARSON For voluntary service to the Royal National Lifeboat Association in Hollywood, Co. Down, Northern Ireland.
Rosemary (Sarah Jane), Mrs DUNBAR For services to Charitable Fundraising in Northern Ireland.
William Charles FERGUSON Community Service Organiser, Probation Board for Northern Ireland. For services to Community Safety.
Pauline Christian, Mrs GRILLS For voluntary service to the community and Sport in Co. Down, Northern Ireland.
Richard Bryan HOOL For charitable service to Cancer Charities in Northern Ireland.
David Alistair JACK For services to Photography in Northern Ireland.
Mary, Mrs KNOX For voluntary services to the community of Broughshane, Northern Ireland.
Matilda Maud, Mrs KYLE For voluntary services to the Northern Ireland Hospice.
Margaret, Mrs MARSHALL For services to Integrated Education in Northern Ireland.
Edith, Mrs MCADAMS For services to the community in Northern Ireland.
Tom MCKENNA Chairman, Crewe United Football and Social Club. For services to Football and Cross Community Reconciliation in Northern Ireland.
John Scott MITCHELL For voluntary service to the community in Northern Ireland through Volunteer Now.
Ann, Mrs ORR For services to Agriculture Industry and the Rural Community in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. William Edward Raymond ORR For voluntary and charitable service in Northern Ireland.
Miss Jean Elizabeth Beatrice PATTERSON For services to the community in Seskinore, Northern Ireland
Maurice Samuel SIMPSON Lately Voluntary Car Services Driver, Northern Ireland Ambulance Service. For services to the community in Derry