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Ex-Tánaiste In The Running For Top Donegal GAA Post

Ex-Tánaiste In The Running For Top Donegal GAA Post
By Maurice Brosnan Updated

One of the six candidates nominated to succeed outgoing Donegal GAA chairman Sean Dunnion is none other than former Tánaiste Mary Coughlan.

The Donegal county board’s annual convention is set to take place in Jackson’s Hotel, Ballybofey on December 8 with a decision expected then as to who will replace outgoing Dunnion, who has served his five year term.

Mary Coughlan was a member of Fianna Fáil and served as both deputy leader and Tánaiste between 2008-2011. She is currently secretary of her local St Naul’s club.

Should she prove successful Coughlan would not be the only female chairperson next year. Tracey Kennedy was confirmed last Tuesday as the first female chair in the history of Cork GAA. Kennedy had operated as PRO and vice-chairperson and ran unopposed for the position.

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Roisin Jordan was the first female elected to the position of a county board chairperson when she took charge of that role in 2015. At the time she said gender should not be an issue declaring the only relevant information whether you are "good enough for the job."

You work your way up through it. You have to start at the grassroots levels.

Coughlan will face stiff opposition if she is to secure the role, another nominee comes from her club in Cieran Kelly while also nominated were Niall Erskine, Frankie Doherty, Grace Boyle and Mick McGrath.

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The GAA has endured a difficult conversation in recent times surrounding the lack of women in roles of authority with a certain reluctance to Minister of State for Sport, Patrick O’Donovan's call for gender quotas last year.

A spokesperson at the time said:

As a family based organisation the GAA welcomes efforts to increase the participation of women and girls across the sporting spectrum. A growing number of ladies have taken on officer roles in recent years, a trend we hope to see continue.

However, democracy lies at the heart of the process that facilitates the appointment of the vast majority of our officials and in light of this morning’s announcement a wider discussion is now required to assess its potential impact.

SEE ALSO: Farcical Scenes In The Seanad As Senator Castigates World Cup Bid

 

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