2011 40 Under 40 – A-F

Name: Laurence Banville 

Biography: Laurence BanVille was born in County Wexford, Ireland. He graduated with the equivalent to summa cum laude from University College Dublin, where he studied business and law. Laurence moved to the US in 2007 whereupon he passed the New York state bar exam. He subsequently moved to Philadelphia where he worked as a litigator in insurance defense litigation. Laurence now runs his own company, Alliance Equals, LLC, which is a full service business development consulting firm. Laurence is the founding chair of Irish Network-Philadelphia and sits on the Irish Network-USA board. He was recently named in the Irish Legal 100.


Name: Sylvie Barak 

Biography: Sylvie Barak was born in Belgium to an Irish mother and Welsh father. After graduating from the European School of Brussels she moved to Israel, joined the army and served in the press corps for two years, after which she read politics and history at tel Aviv university. After a stint in the ministry of defense, Sylvie started working as a journalist for British technology tabloid the Inquirer where she quickly became news editor. She now edits RCR Wireless and lives in Silicon Valley California while her husband completes his PhD at Stanford.


Name: Bill Baroni 

Biography: Bill Baroni is Deputy Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.  Mr Baroni, an attorney and former member of the New Jersey Legislature, joined the bi-state agency in March 2010, following his appointment by Governor Chris Christie. Born in Jacksonville, Florida, Bill was adopted through Catholic Charities by Bill Snr and Geraldine (Kilmartin) Baroni.Bill’s interest in public service began at the age of 14, when he worked for his local Congressman, Chris Smith. After receiving his undergraduate degree from George Washington University, where he majored in history and graduated magna cum laude with special honors, he went on to earn his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law. Bill Baroni began his legislative career in the New Jersey Assembly, winning his first two-year term in 2003 and re-election in 2005.  He then went on to win a seat in the New Jersey Senate in 2007. During his time in the Legislature, he earned a reputation for hard work by knocking on more than 27,000 doors to hear directly from the people he represented. At the Port Authority, Bill focuses on meeting the needs of the millions of people who count on the Port Authority’s various Hudson River crossings to get them where they need to go. In addition to overseeing the Port Authority’s various transportation assets, including five airports, four bridges, two tunnels, and the PATH transit system, Bill also oversees the Port of New York and New Jersey, the busiest seaport on the East Coast. Bill is also deeply engaged in the Port Authority’s mission to rebuild the World Trade Center site that was destroyed during the attacks of September 11, 2001. Bill has been recognized for his leadership in the community many times in the last decade. The North Ward Center honored him as “Irish-Italian of the Year” in both 2004 and 2010. Additionally, the Aspen Institute selected Mr. Baroni for its public leadership fellowship program while he was a legislator Currently, Mr Baroni is also an adjunct professor at Seton Hall University Law School, where he teaches Professional Responsibilities along with Election Law, Educational Law and Legislation. He was named ‘Adjunct Professor of the Year’ in 2004 and received the Congressman Peter W. Rodino Award in 2007.  In addition to his professional responsibilities, Bill remains committed to his community. He previously served as chairman of the Mercer County Community College Board of Trustees, as well as the foundation boards of both the College of New Jersey and Mercer County Community College. He is a member of Ancient Order of Hibernians Msgr. Crean Division, and he serves on the Board of Trustees for Visitation Home, a Catholic shared residence for New Jersey residents with developmental disabilities.


Name: Ciaran Barry 

Biography: Ciaran Barry was born in Cork, Ireland to Niall and Grainne Barry and is the first of three children. The family moved to Rockville Centre, New York in the mid-1980’s and Ciaran still resides there with his wife Kelly, daughters Molly (aged two), Kiley (one) and expecting baby number three in July 2011. Upon graduating from Siena College in 2001, Ciaran combined his passions for Ireland and travel by joining Global Consolidated Services (GCS) which is the parent company for several large vacation brands including Sceptre Tours, Aer Lingus Vacation Store and Dooley Vacations. Ciaran is currently the Director of Marketing & Promotions for these travel brands which focus on providing travelers with incredible vacation experiences at affordable prices. To date sales have increased 30 percent year over year and GCS is the largest supplier to many partners in the Irish Tourism community. GCS vacation products have been featured in all major newspaper publications and many TV travel segments. At the 2010 Travel Zoo awards, GCS/Sceptre Tours was awarded the ‘Best Overall Provider of Outstanding Travel Deals.’


Name: Francis Barry 

Biography: Francis Barry, whose grandparents came to New York from Leitrim and Mayo in 1907, was born on Bloomsday, 1975. After graduating from the University of Notre Dame, Barry joined the Marist Volunteer Program and spent two years teaching English at St Agnes Boys High School on the Upper West Side. In 2002 he joined Mayor Bloomberg’s administration, where he now serves as the Mayor’s chief speechwriter and Director of Public Affairs. He is also the author of a 2009 book on the history of political reform in New York, The Scandal of Reform.


Name: David Bredin 

Biography: David Bredin was born in Dublin, obtained a degree in business and legal Studies, and gained his masters degree in Human Rights and comparative discrimination law from Queens University Belfast. He settled in New York in 2000 and after witnessing September 11th first hand, he decided to stay longer in the US. He started his office in 2001, and practices in many areas, including criminal, real estate, family, corporate and human rights. Indeed his main focus is in immigration, he practices in federal court and also volunteers his time in New York Civil Court as an arbitrator. David has worked alongside non-governmental organizations and has worked on and holds many pro bono cases. His desire to work in the field of human rights stems from his involvement with Amnesty International in Dublin, where he worked as a volunteer.  David is also a qualified solicitor/lawyer in Ireland, England and Wales. He travels back and forth to Ireland and still has many family and friends in the old country.


Name: Jim Brennan 

Biography: James Brennan was born March 8, 1980 in New York City, a son of Michael Brennan and Mary Ann McCall. He was born the youngest of five children; a scion of an Irish-American family of superintendents, who combined, currently operate 16 buildings in Manhattan today. His grandfather Jack Brennan and his grandmother Brigid Brennan (nee Martin) proudly hail from Crossmaglen, South Armagh. His maternal grandfather, Peter McLaughlin was from neighboring Tyrone and his wife, Mary McLaughlin (nee McKenna) from Derry. The traditional values taught to him from previous generations and his work ethic to do whatever it takes to get the job done is the driving force behind his growth into the leader that he is today. Currently serving as president of the Scandinavian American Building Managers Guild, he continues to work closely with industry leaders and local administrations; trying to align goals he sets for an optimistic industry future. James sets the standard of professionalism in his industry and when speaking with Mr Brennan, his passion for success is clear and the optimism in which he speaks shows that Jimmy’s journey within the industry is only beginning and will continue to reach new heights in the years to come.


Name: Margaret Brennan 

Biography: Margaret Brennan anchors ‘In Business with Margaret Brennan’ which airs from 10am-12pm ET on Bloomberg TV. The daily global broadcast focuses on the international markets and the interconnection of geopolitical, economic and consumer trends. Previously, Brennan was a General Assignment Reporter for CNBC and a contributor to NBC and MSNBC. Brennan graduated with highest distinction from the University of Virginia with a BA in Foreign Affairs and Middle East studies and a minor in Arabic language.  As a Fulbright-Hayes Scholar, Brennan studied Arabic at Yarmouk University in Irbid, Jordan. Brennan is a Whitehead Fellow with the Foreign Policy Association, serves on the Advisory Board of the Smurfit School of Business at the University College Dublin.  She is on the junior board of the Waterside School in Stamford, CT. NewsPro named Brennan one of the ‘10 Most Powerful In TV Financial News’ and she was named to the Irish America Magazine Business Top 100 in December 2010.


Name: Megan Burke 

Biography: Megan Burke serves as the Chief of Staff at the New York City Department of Small Business Services (SBS). Raised in Birdsboro, Pennsylvania, she attended Dickinson College, graduating Phi Beta Kappa with her BA in Law and Policy. She has worked at SBS since 2007 in a variety of roles: Deputy Chief of Staff, Senior Policy Advisor to the Commissioner and Strategic Planning Analyst. Previously, Megan worked for the Scottish Parliament and the Pennsylvania Commission for Women. She also mentors first-generation college students through a program called New York Needs You.


Name: Lauren J. Byrne 

Biography: Lauren Byrne, Executive Director of Lawrenceville United, works to improve the overall quality of life for residents in one of Pittsburgh’s largest and most diverse neighborhoods through community engagement, activism, planning, and community development.  Under Lauren’s leadership, crime has decreased, and millions of dollars have been invested to support residential and commercial development in this post-industrial, riverfront community.  Prior to working in Lawrenceville, Lauren worked with Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl as a project co-ordinator and liaison to community groups throughout Pittsburgh’s 90 neighborhoods upon her graduation from Allegheny College with a BA. in Political Science and English and the completion of her thesis: The Irish Diaspora in America: The Effects of Irish American Identity on American Politics and Literature. Lauren currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group, the City of Pittsburgh’s Disruptive Properties Appeals Board, and the Eastside Neighborhood Employment Center Board.  Lauren has stayed active in the Pittsburgh Irish Community. As a founding member and the first President of the Junior Division 23 LAOH, and after being featured in Irish America Magazine for winning a National Irish History Writing Contest, Lauren was named Miss Smiling Irish Eyes for Pittsburgh’s St Patrick’s Day Parade in 2002. Lauren represented Pittsburgh in the 2002 International Maiden of the Mournes Festival, in Warrenpoint, County Down. Lauren currently serves as a member of the Pittsburgh St Patrick’s Day Parade Planning Committe.


Name: Seamus Carroll 

Biography: Seamus Carroll is Vice President of Emerging Companies at IDA Ireland New York. He is responsible for driving IDA’s emerging company activities on the Eastern half of North America. He has lived in New York with his family for the past six years, successfully building transatlantic investment and trade relationships. In this and other roles he has worked with numerous US emerging and fortune 500 companies across a range of industries in restructuring, expanding and establishing operations in Europe/Ireland. Before joining IDA Seamus worked with one of Ireland’s leading consulting firms in Belfast and in strategic planning at Ireland’s largest electricity company. With roots in County Mayo and Roscommon he graduated with a BA in Applied Economics and an MBA from the University of Ulster. As the father of a daughter with cerebral palsy he is active in promoting awareness of special needs.


Name: Stephen Carty 

Biography: Stephen Carty is the son of John and Nancy Carty of Wilton Ballymackey Nenagh, Co Cork. Stephen began his education at Kilruane National School and furthered it by attending Nenagh Vocational School. Stephen began working for Proctor and Gamble in 1990 and remained working there until he immigrated to New York in 1997. He proudly wore the black and white jersey for the Kilruane McDonaghs GAA Club and loved his time playing soccer with Ballymackey Soccer Club. On arrival in New York Stephen quickly became involved in the Tipperary Hurling Club where he served as both a player and a selector. In 2005 Stephen with his partners opened the now highly successful Mickey Spillane’s Restaurant and Bar in Eastchester New York. Stephen quickly became involved in local community affairs joining the local Chamber of Commerce and the Eastchester Irish Organization. In 2009 they opened their second Restaurant and Bar Molly Spillane’s in Mamaroneck New York. On January 21 2010 the Spillane Group opened their third location Nelly Spillane’s 18 East 33rd in New York City. In mid-March Maggie Spillane’s Fleetwood bar is earmarked to open its doors to the public with rooftop dining for 100 people. In 2010 Stephen was honored to be selected with Mike Hynes as the co-grand marshal of the Eastchester Irish St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Stephen currently sits on the organizing committee for the future Mamaroneck St. Patrick’s Day Parade coming in 2012.


Name: Patrick Clark 

Biography: Patrick Clark was born in Tampa, Florida, the third son of Jerry Clark and Patricia Clark. He has worked in restaurants for the last 14 years and has opened 23 restaurants to date. He attributes all his success in life and buisness to his father, mother, step mother, and five siblings who have supported him through every step.


Name: Mairead Conley 

Biography: Mairead Conley was born on June 26, 1985 to a large Irish-American family outside of Philadelphia, PA. Volunteer work and music have always been fundamental parts of Mairead’s life. She spent summers serving in Appalachia as well as traveling and performing with the Temple University Gifted Young Musicians. After receiving a BA. in Sociology, Mairead lived a year in poverty with Mercy Volunteer Corps as a school social worker in Cincinnati, OH. In 2009 Mairead began serving as Deputy Director of Community Programs at the Irish Immigration Center. She is a founding member and Treasurer of the Board of Irish Network-Philadelphia and is also the 2010 Philadelphia and Mid-Atlantic Rose of Tralee.


Name: Elizabeth Crowley 

Biography: Elizabeth S. Crowley is the first Democrat and first female to represent the communities of Glendale, Maspeth, Middle Village, Richmond Hill, Ridgewood and Woodhaven. Elected in November 2008, Elizabeth serves on the committees of Environmental Protection, Housing and Buildings, Parks and Recreation, State and Federal Legislation, Cultural Affairs and Chairs the Committee on Fire and Criminal Justice Services. As Chair, Elizabeth works closely with both City agencies and the uniform unions to provide oversight and to improve our city’s departments of Fire, Corrections and Probation. Within Council District 30, Elizabeth has been widely published for her leadership in improving public education, public safety and transportation infrastructure and advocating for better access to quality health care.

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