The Board of Directors of the Newport Irish Heritage Association has announced the recipients of the organization’s 2017 CIVITAS and Fenian Awards . The CIVITAS Award is presented to area residents who have, through their charitable and volunteer work, made positive contributions to the local community. This year’s recipient of the CIVITAS Award is Reverend Francis O’Loughlin, pastor of Jesus Saviour Church in Newport.

The Fenian Award, established in 2009, was created to honor an area resident who is of Irish descent and has made significant contributions to the Newport community.  This year the Fenian Award is being presented to Paul Shea of Middletown for his work with many civic organizations including the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Newport’s twinning with Kinsale, Ireland, and the Hillside Charitable Organization.

Both awards will be presented at a dinner at the LaForge Casino Restaurant in Newport at 6:00pm on Thursday,  April 27. Tickets are $35.00 and can be purchased by calling Kathy Creaney at 849-8956 or Jim Mahoney at 924-0284.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What's Up Newp. He was born and raised in Rhode Island and graduated from Coventry High School. He serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League for Animals. Ryan also is currently the Senior Editor - North America for Mountain News, publisher of OnTheSnow. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).