LISHEEN’S finest, Paul and Gary O'Donovan were named Cork Persons of the Year for 2016, at a glittering awards lunch in Cork this afternoon.
Before an invited audience of 250, representing all sectors of Cork society, Gary received a standing ovation at the Gala Awards Lunch in the Rochestown Park Hotel, as Paul is currently on work placement in Dublin.
The Mayor of Cork County Cllr Seamus McGrath and Lord Mayor Cllr. Des Cahill presented the award to Gary O'Donovan, on behalf of the people of Cork County and City.
‘In the 24 years history of these awards, we got the most nominations ever for Paul and Gary, so it was really no surprise to most, when they picked up the Persons of Year trophy for the huge impact they have made,. said awards founder and organiser Manus O'Callaghan.
These Olympic heroes brought the country to a standstill, when they won Olympic silver in Rio last year and Paul won gold at the world championships in Rotterdam immediately afterwards.
Many guests at the awards lunch spoke about the boys’ endearing personalities as well as their herculean efforts in rowing. Already their success has led to huge membership growth in rowing and sailing clubs around Ireland.
The Lisheen, Skibbereen natives had already won the RTÉ Sports Team of the Year award, and the Director General of RTÉ Dee Forbes who spoke at the lunch today, was the first up to congratulate her fellow West Cork neighbour Gary O'Donovan.