Gabrielle, who hails from Nenagh, is studying at Shannon College of Hotel Management for a Bachelor of Commerce and Hotel Management Degree. A daughter of VFI member Bob Reidy who owns the Sky Farmer pub in Nenagh, Gabrielle was presented with a cheque for €1,000 by VFI President Gerry Mellett in Charlie Stewart’s pub in Ennis.
The Scholarship initiative aims to help children and/or siblings of VFI members through Third Level education. In particular the initiative hopes to help those attending a course relevant to the business with a view to continuing in the trade thereafter.
Michael Howard was VFI President in 1976/77 and as a Senator represented the organisation in Seanad Éireann for many decades. He passed away in 2009 after a lengthy illness.
“He also played a huge part in formulating policies and in putting in place the structures that we have today,” commented VFI President Gerry Mellett, “As a politician, even though a Fine Gael man, he was well-regarded by all in Seanad Éireann and had an uncanny ability to open doors with everyone and anyone.
“But most of all he was a family man who is sorely missed not only by those who knew him best but also by fellow publicans, colleagues and friends. We in the VFI hope that this Scholarship is a fitting tribute to a great man and we wish Gabrielle the very best of luck with her studies.”
The Scholarship process involved an application from each entrant and a subsequent interview in front of a panel.