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March 11, 2013

Chandler to host Sister City delegation from Tullamore, Ireland

The observance of St. Patrick’s Day in Chandler will be especially meaningful this year as the community welcomes a delegation of 30 dignitaries, educators, students and business owners from Tullamore, Ireland, Chandler’s Sister City.

Tullamore is a major commercial and industrial center located in County Offaly in the midlands of Ireland. Chandler and Tullamore forged a relationship in 2008 to encourage cultural understanding, community involvement, economic development and educational exchanges.

The Tullamore delegation will be in Chandler March 14-21 and includes Tullamore’s Town Manager, Declan Kirrane, Town Councilmember Anthony McCormack, a contingent of business people and educators, and a group of 20 secondary school students from Tullamore’s Sacred Heart School.  

The visit will include a ceremony reaffirming the Sister City relationship and visits with City officials, the Chandler Chamber of Commerce, and Chandler businesses.

“Like Chandler, the Tullamore area of Ireland has transformed from a rural economy into one with a high-tech base,” said Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny. “When we compare ourselves to other cities and locales we recognize we have much to offer and much to learn.”    

Representatives from three Irish companies, RR Projects, DesignHub and Print Plus will use the visit to explore business connections and tour Chandler’s Innovations Technology Incubator and Gangplank, an incubator for business startups.

“The growing links between our two communities provide a valuable resource for business development, education and cultural exchange and all of these links benefit our community in a variety of ways,” said McCormack, who in addition to being a Tullamore councilmember, owns Print Plus. “I wish to acknowledge the work of those involved in the Chandler-Tullamore Sister Cities program and look forward to developing more links that will benefit us both.”

The visiting Tullamore students will stay with host families and spend several days at Chandler’s Seton Catholic Preparatory, their ‘sister school’, plus participate in the Saint Patrick's Day Parade and Faire in Phoenix and travel to the Grand Canyon. Sacred Heart and Seton students last year collaborated on a book of recipes from Ireland and Arizona and 11 students from Seton will visit Tullamore in June.

For more information, contact Leah Powell 480-782-4352, Ellen Harrington 480-600-8509, Barbara Olivieri 480-347-8293, or visit www.chandlerirish.org.