Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney nominated to be U.S. ambassador to Ireland

Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney was nominated to be the U.S. ambassador to Ireland by President Barack Obama on Tuesday.

Rooney, 76, is a lifelong Republican, but he endorsed Obama in Pennsylvania's Democratic primary and later campaigned for him in western Pennsylvania during the general election.

"I am honored and grateful that such a dedicated and accomplished individual has agreed to serve as the representative of the United States to the Irish people," said Obama. "Dan Rooney is an unwavering supporter of Irish peace, culture, and education, and I have every confidence that he and Secretary Clinton will ensure America's continued close and unique partnership with Ireland in the years ahead."

Rooney has been president of the Steelers since 1975 and this past season his team won its sixth Super Bowl.

He is in the NFL Hall of Fame and has also received the American Ireland Fund's lifetime achievement award.

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