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Kieran McGowan, Chairman of CRH plc & Former Chief Executive of IDA Ireland
To Receive Council’s Award for Outstanding Achievement
At 49th Annual Dinner In New York

New York, NY: JUNE 30, 2011 The Ireland-U.S. Council will present its Award for Outstanding Achievement in 2011 to Kieran McGowan, Chairman of CRH plc and former Chief Executive of Ireland’s Industrial Development Agency to mark his notable and important achievements in building the business bonds and commercial connections between America and Ireland during his varied and successful business career.

Kieran McGowan, Chairman of CRH plc
Kieran McGowan
Chairman
CRH plc

The award will be the centerpiece of the Council’s 49th Annual Dinner to be held at the Metropolitan Club in New York City on Thursday, November 10, 2011. Each year, the Council presents this award to an individual who has made a significant contribution to enhancing the economic relationships between the United States and Ireland.

Dennis Swanson, the President of the Council based in New York, said "We in this Council are extraordinarily pleased to recognize the substantial contributions made by Kieran McGowan during his impressive career in both the public sector and in private business in building connections between Ireland and the United States. Through his leadership over many years, the economic and business bonds between America and Ireland have been greatly strengthened and enhanced. The members and directors of the Council are delighted to honor such an outstanding and worthy recipient with an award that is so well-deserved."

Kieran McGowan is currently chairman of CRH plc, Ireland’s largest company which is a diversified building materials group that employs 75,000 people at 3,600 locations in 35 countries. The company has built a substantial presence in the United States employing 33,000 people in 44 states at over 1,600 operating locations throughout the country.

He had also served as a senior executive of Ireland’s Industrial Development Agency for many years and was its Chief Executive from 1990 thru 1998, a crucial time during which great success was achieved in attracting American industrial capital into Ireland.

Mr. McGowan’s tenure at IDA Ireland was extremely productive and was marked by some bellwether and important U.S. investment projects being won for Ireland against the stiffest international competition. These included the massive $6 billion technology campus investment in County Kildare by Intel Corporation announced in 1989 for the site of a 360-acre former stud farm making it the most technologically-advanced industrial location in Europe.

Mr. McGowan is also a board member of Elan Corporation plc, a neuroscience-based biotechnology company headquartered in Dublin, which has built a substantial presence in the United States. In addition, he also serves as a director of Charles Schwab Worldwide Funds, plc. Mr. McGowan was also Chairman (1998-2000) and President (2000-2002) of the Irish Management Institute and has chaired the Governing Authority at University College Dublin, Ireland’s largest university. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Laws by University College Dublin in 2009 and received the Royal Dublin Society (RDS) Gold Medal for Industry in 2008.

The Ireland-U.S. Council was founded in 1963 by American and Irish business leaders. Its principal objective is to encourage closer business links between Ireland and the United States. The Council operates a variety of scholarship and internship programs, stages lectures, seminars and hosts frequent events in Ireland and in America aimed at building communications between business, political and opinion leaders on both sides of the Atlantic. As part of its platform, the Council also supports and sponsors many initiatives in the arts. The Council is a not-for-profit corporation with headquarters in New York City and a permanent office in Dublin.