Belgium GAA held its 3rd AGM in the plush surroundings of the European Parliament. Chairman and legendary Mayo Swede Olof Gill handed over the reins to Galwayman Kevin Keary. In his speech, Olof made reference to the ongoing strides of the phenomenon that is Belgium GAA, both on and off the pitch along with some unusual references to frogs in the blue sky.
Club Secretary Becky Mattes in her short but comprehensive speech cited notable successes in 2009 such as retaining the Ladies' Pan-European Football crown and winning the Hurling title for the first time. Off the pitch, Conan MacOscair won the award for best GAA website of the year, while clubman Willie 'the Tipp Lip' Cashin was elected Chair of the European County Board in Madrid in December.
New officers elected included Conchur de Barra as Treasurer (making a welcome return to the Committee), Tipp man Big Jim McGrath as PRO, Jane Brennan as Ladies' Football Officer, Sylvia McCarthy as Camogie Officer, and Lorraine Baldwin and Phil ‘the Crusher’ Cushen who will provide the military hardware as equipment officers.
Last but by no means least, a new beefed up Fundraising Subcommittee in the form of Johnny Phelan, Pearse O’Caoimh, Aisling Fenton, Clare Appleby, Rosine Bacon and Stephanie Dunn is in place to rake in the sponds.
The highlight of the night was the election of two Honorary Presidents of Belgium GAA. These are Malachy Vallely, Director of the world-renowned Irish Institute in Leuven, and Sean Kelly MEP, who generously hosted the AGM. The former President of the GAA will doubtless be a great asset to the club in raising our profile back in Ireland, while Malachy will do the same in Belgium.
It’s shaping up to be another big year ahead for Belgium GAA so roll on the first trip to Clare Island on March 20th!