James C. Kenny
Former United States Ambassador to Ireland
Ambassador James C. Kenny, United States Ambassador to Ireland, presented his credentials to the President of Ireland, Mary McAleese, at Áras an Uachtaráin, Dublin, on October 31, 2003.
Before his appointment, James C. Kenny was Executive Vice-President of Kenny Construction Company and President of Kenny Management Services. Kenny Construction Company, founded in 1927, is involved in building projects across the United States. Kenny Management Services is a new division that has overseen large, complex construction projects such as the Chicago Midway Airport expansion and the new stadium for the Chicago Bears football team.
In addition to his involvement in the construction industry, Mr. Kenny has found time to devote to public and community service. Illinois Governor Jim Edgar appointed him to the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority Board in 1991. Former President George H. W. Bush appointed Mr. Kenny to the National Corporation for Housing Partnerships. He also served on the transition team for President George W. Bush (2000-2001).
Ambassador Kenny was a member of President Bush’s first overseas delegation in February 2002, traveling to Nicaragua for the inauguration of President Bolanos. He has served on the boards of directors for the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, Bradley University, Children’s Memorial Hospital, and the Illinois Business Roundtable.
Ambassador Kenny received several business and community service awards before his appointment as Ambassador, among them the Hispanic American Construction Association’s Contractor of the Year and a Salvation Army award for the Tree of Lights campaign in 2001. He was also selected as one of Crain’s Chicago Business “40 Under 40” Outstanding Executives.
After his appointment as U.S. Ambassador to Ireland, Mr. Kenny received the Flax Trust Award in 2004. The Flax Trust was formed in Belfast in 1977 and is the largest community regeneration project in the whole of Ireland. Lynn University and the American College Dublin also awarded Ambassador Kenny an honorary “Doctor of Humane Letters” in 2005.
Ambassador Kenny received his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. He and his wife, Margaret, have four children.