The Irish government, proud of its progress in establishing Irish economic and business connections in America, decided at its economic conference at Farmleigh in Dublin in 2009 to make economic and other ties with America even stronger. To that end, and as part of a strategic review of the relationship between the US and Ireland, the Irish Embassy in Washington DC and Irish Consulates throughout the US are promoting and assisting in the establishment of Irish Business Networks-USA. The goal of these Networks will be to further strengthen the already considerable economic, social and cultural ties between the two countries, as well among Irish-American businesses themselves. The Irish Prime Minister, An Taoiseach Brian Cowen, formally launched Irish Network USA on March 14th in San Francisco, as a direct outcome of the Farmleigh conference”s recommendations. The Irish government intends to make Farmleigh, and future such conferences, Ireland”s version of the highly successful Davos, Switzerland model that annually maps out critical economic pathways for Western Europe and other parts of the world economy. The intention is to make Irish Network USA its umbrella organization for regional Irish business networking groups already in existence in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego and Washington, D.C. Cowen also wants to expand Ireland”s footprint in the USA by reaching out to other major metropolitan areas, like Seattle, Denver, Boulder and other cities with large numbers of Irish-Americans, Irish expatriates, and friends of Ireland. San Francisco-based Irish Consul General, Gerry Staunton commented after the March 14 announcement that “this platform for cooperation within the large Irish-friendly American business community is an idea whose time has surely come. Not only will Irish Network- USA serve as a bridge between Ireland”s business community and American business, but it will also bring Irish America and its considerable economic clout in closer contact within itself” The Consul General went to say that “the establishment of a Nationwide Database, as proposed by Irish Network-USA, will be hugely beneficial to the individual members of the Networks in their own business activities” Staunton, during a recent visit to Denver, asked Irish-born Denver executive Ciar”n Dwyer and longtime Denver attorney Tom Burke, to look into the possibility of establishing an Irish Business Network in Colorado. An inaugural meeting of the Irish Network- Colorado will be held Thursday, May 20,, 2010 at 6.30pm in the Robert Burns room at the Celtic Tavern (1801 Blake St. 303-308-1795). This meeting seeks to kick off the same Colorado-based economic, cultural and social ties Taoiseach Cowen wants to establish with Irish Network USA. Dwyer, when asked how the kickoff meeting will be organized, said “it will be Irish, free form and friendly, but with serious purpose and intent. Everyone needs to bring his or her business cards along so we can get our Irish Network Colorado off the blocks as soon as possible.”

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