THE chairman of the newly independent Shannon Airport Rose Hynes took the Limerick Chamber President’s Award.
She follows in the footsteps of Denis Brosnan and Paddy O’Sullivan in picking up the prize, awarded by the Chamber president of the day for outstanding success in their field.
Dr Fergal Barry picked Ms Hynes for the work she has done in growing Shannon Airport’s passenger numbers.
Since moving from Bord Gais to the newly independent airport in January last, Ms Hynes has overseen an increase in passenger numbers at the airport in recent months.
Deals have also been done with Ryanair to increase its service from April next, as well as with Flybe, while Aer Lingus is also adding new routes at the base. But speaking to reporters after her win, Ms Hynes said it is crucial that people in Limerick support these new routes.
Upon receiving the prize – to a standing ovation from the room – Ms Hynes admitted she was “overwhelmed”.
“We are making lots of progress. But we must do an awful lot more, and we will. People have to use Shannon, and to see Shannon as their airport. This is my message. The one way to get more flights and more routes, is to fill the ones we have,” she said.
Announcing Ms Hynes as the recipient of the award – Limerick Chamber President Dr. Fergal Barry, vice-president of Research, Development and Enterprise at Limerick Institute of Technology, paid tribute to her leadership and vision on the Shannon project.
“Though the newly independent Shannon Group plc. is still very much in its infancy, it is fair to say that all of us in the room here tonight are imbued with a confidence that under the astute and firm leadership of Rose Hynes, the group not only has a strong vision but is already making significant definite strides and significant gains on the way to achieving that vision,” he told people at the dinner.
Upon receiving her award – the last to be given out of the evening – Ms Hynes captured the mood of the room when she promised not to speak at length in return for their support for Shannon Airport.
With guests by now very keen to tuck into dinner, her extremely brief speech was widely deemed to be the best of the night!