DAN ROONEY, the American Ambassador to Ireland, celebrates his 79th birthday under scattered clouds in Ireland today. He spent most of yesterday in County Tipperary, visiting places and people as part of the outreach programme he has promoted so effectively as the United States Ambassador. Anyone who has spoken to Dan Rooney knows he is a man of action. Many of his traits are similar to Alex Ferguson's on the Manchester United training grounds. Like Ferguson, Rooney is used to working shoulder to shoulder with professional athletes. And like Sir Alex, Dan Rooney knows a chancer. I'm happy to have listened to Ambassador Rooney explain to Irish audiences how to leverage the special relationship Ireland has with America. But I'm more grateful to know he promotes a bootstrap attitude in the minds of those he greets. That's more in the style of my family line and it's fair to say that I hear a lot of what my grandfather would have preached to his 10 grandchildren while I was growing up as a Pittsburgh Steelers fan in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.
Listen to my Audioboo on Dan Rooney