A creative young Donegal woman has been honoured with a prestigious award following years of contributions to the New York Irish community.

Jane McCarter O’Dowd from Buncrana is the first honoree of the New York Irish Center’s ‘Women of Ireland’ celebration.

The event honours women who bridge the transatlantic divide between America and Ireland through culture, social care, business, and community involvement.

Jane was the first Arts and Cultural Director at the New York Irish Center for eight years, before embarking on a new adventure with The Ireland Funds team.

A past pupil of Scoil Iosagain and and Scoil Mhuire in Buncrana, Jane studied Drama with Psychology at University of Ulster Magee before making the move to NYC in 2011 with her husband Robert.

Her work building an Arts & Cultural programme at the NYIC has touched many lives, from the young children who attend annual Tír na nÓg summer camps to the Senior Moments choir for seniors.

She is also a keen Gaelic footballer with the Manhattan Gaels.

Jane was honoured at an online celebration on 13th January.

In praise of her community endeavours, the NYIC said: “Jane cultivated a robust cultural program at the New York Irish Center, bringing together children, adults, and senior citizens through various cultural programs, from theatre to arts & crafts to film and more.

“She brought her enormous talent to the Ireland Funds, continuing in the mission of displaying the inclusivity of Irish culture.

“Congratulations, Jane, and thank you for your continued efforts in the Irish community.”