Peter McKenna: Outstanding Contribution to Sponsorship 2019

While shortlisted candidates across 18 categories will have to wait until the night of The Irish Sponsorship Awards to be held on Thursday, December 5th, to find out if they are successful, one recipient has already been named.


We are delighted to announce that Peter McKenna will be the recipient of the Outstanding Contribution Award.



This award recognises the significant contribution he has made throughout his career, which you can read about below.


Peter hails from, Newtown Cashel, a small village on the shores of Lough Ree, in Co. Longford. He studied Chemical Engineering in UCD, based in Earlsfort Terrace and from college joined the Smurfit graduate training programme.


He was appointed Chief Executive Officer of the Smurfit Communications group in 1994 and held that position until he joined the GAA in 2001.


During his tenure as CEO of the Smurfit Communications group, Peter was instrumental in the turnaround of a loss-making publishing company, to a highly profitable, industry leading, communications company. He was responsible for the launch of a new media division, as well as an award-winning direct marketing joint venture. Over this time the publishing group emerged as Ireland’s leading consumer-publishing house and was ranked in the top 10 contract publishers in Ireland and the UK.



In 2001, Peter was appointed as the Stadium Director of Ireland’s most iconic venue, Croke Park. The core business of Croke Park is venue management. Under his leadership the company manages the major asset of the Gaelic Athletic Association on a day to day basis. This involves the key services, facilities, security, safety, personnel and customer service in order to ensure that the stadium is both maintained and utilised in an appropriate manner to secure the best possible return on investment for the GAA.



In 2012, Peter’s role was expanded to include responsibilities under the umbrella title, Commercial Director of the GAA. In this capacity, he is responsible for the management of national sponsorships, media rights and the overall marketing direction for the promotion of Gaelic games. Commercial revenues under his remit account for over 45% of the GAA’s annual revenues.



In addition to his work with the GAA, Peter is a Director of Fire Station Artists Studio, a Director of the GAA Museum and on the advisory board of the national Anti-Bullying Council.


Peter McKenna will receive the Outstanding Contribution to Sponsorship 2019 award at The Irish Sponsorship Awards 2019. The gala awards ceremony and dinner will take place on Thursday, December 5th, at Croke Park, Dublin. To book your seats to attend this event, click here.

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