March 10, 2018 7:10 pm
Updated: March 11, 2018 3:09 pm

41st annual Irishman of the year breakfast honours Paul Doyle

Paul Doyle, Montreal's Irishman of 2018. Saturday March 10, 2018.

Francois Joly / Global News

The week to celebrate all things Irish has kicked off in Montreal with one of its first events: the 41st annual Irishman of the year breakfast.

The Erin Sports Association honoured Paul Doyle.

“Every year we honour a deserving Montreal man who does things in the community of Montreal for the Irish and beyond,” said Tim Furlong, president of the Erin Sports Association.

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Doyle has been lending his leadership skills to the community for decades, most notably as a chairman of the Saint Patrick’s golf tournament, a position he’s held for 22 years.

READ MORE: Queen selected to preside over Montreal’s St. Patrick’s Day parade

“We’ve raised over a quarter-million dollars for the charitable works of the society,” Doyle told Gobal News.

Doyle is also a chairman of the financial committee looking after the St. Patrick’s Society’s assets.

In his youth,  the Irishman of the year was a football player, once drafted by the Saskatchewan Roughriders, as recounted by Furlong.

READ MORE: Montreal’s annual St. Patrick’s Parade changes routes

Nowadays, you can find Doyle on the ice, curling. Doyle has also served as president of the Montreal-West Curling Club.

“I attended many luncheons and see all my friends hop on stage and all of a sudden pow, I’m up there! Big surprise!” Doyle told Global News with a smile.

Amateur athletes were also honoured and awarded scholarships during the luncheon.

This year’s recipients are James Tyrrel, a football player at Concordia University and Shaylyn Wilkie, a rugby and softball player at Concordia University.

“It’s a great honour and privilege to be nominated. Knowing that there were many other female athletes that are known and named and for me to be able to win it… it’s pretty awesome,”  Wilkie said.

For the first time, this year, the association is honouring a special athlete and will be donating to the special Olympics on their behalf.

The event was attended by a who’s who of Montreal, including Global’s Kim Sullivan who sat at the head table.

Celebrations will continue throughout the week and culminate with St. Patrick’s Parade, Sunday March 18.


© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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