FORMER high-ranking referee Mick McGrath is the new Chairman of Donegal GAA.
The Aodh Ruadh clubman replaces Sean Dunnion, Four Masters, who had to vacate the position having come to the end of his five-year term. McGrath was elected to the chair unopposed.
Meanwhile, it is understood that Donegal will receive approximately €250,000 in grant aid towards developing dressing rooms at the new Training Centre in Convoy.
This year to date there has been 408 bookings for the four pitches in Convoy across football, hurling and camogie as well as schools’ games.
In his final address as County Chairman, Mr Dunnion said he was delighted to be able to deliver a further grant towards the Training Centre.
It follows a meeting with the Director of Finance in Croke Park, attended by Mr Dunnion, Ciaren Kelly, Treasurer and David McLoone, Development Officer, on Thursday evening.
Mr Dunnion is going back to his roots, back to where it all started forty years ago as an U10 footballer. He is expected to become the Children’s Officer at the Four Masters AGM tomorrow evening.
It was a case of third time lucky for the former PRO and Development Officer as he had previously ran unsuccessfully against former chairman Sean Kelly and, more recently, current incumbent Sean Dunnion five years ago.
All of the other candidates that included ex Tanaiste Mary Coughlan, Frankie Doherty, Niall Erskine, Grace Boyle, Aodh Mairtin O’Fearraigh and Cieran Kelly all pulled out.
McGrath is also a former Child Protection Officer and has also served on Referee’ Committees in Croke Park.
He was a key part of Declan Bonner’s backroom team at minor and U-21 level this year.
McGrath is a former county minor goalkeeper spent several years in London where he was deeply involved with Tir Conaill Gaels in the 1970s and 1980s.
One of his biggest challenges will be the on-going development of a Centre of Excellence at Convoy.
And a possibly even more pressing problem could be the vexed question of the availability or not of county players to their clubs in the month of April.
2018 Donegal GAA Executive
Chairman – Mick McGrath
Vice Chairman – Frankie Doherty
Secretary – Aideen Gillen
Assistant Secretary – Declan Martin
Treasurer – Cieran Kelly
Assistant Treasurer – Paddy Tinney
PRO – Ed Byrne
Development Officer – David McLoone
Oifigeach Gaeilge agus Cultúir – Fergus McGee
Coaching Officer – Conor McDermott
Central Council Representative – Seamus Ó Domhnaill
Ulster Council Representatives – PJ McGowan and Liam McElhinney