Former Galway City and County Manager, Mr. Seamus Keating has been presented with the inaugural Innovator of the West Award by Galway Technology Centre (GTC).

The presentation was made by GTC Chairman, Frank Greene in the run up to the centre’s Scaling Our Legacy event, celebrating 25+ years of the facility.

The award was made in recognition of the immense contribution made by Mr. Keating towards the establishment of the centre. Following the closure of Digital Equipment Corporation’s Galway facility in 1994, the then Government formed a special Task Force, which they asked Mr. Keating to lead.

Mr. Keating and the Task Force were the driving force behind the establishment of the Galway Technology Centre. No Task Force of this nature had ever been used before, but such was their impact that the Government went on to copy that model on many subsequent occasions.

Mr. Keating and the Task Force were also responsible for raising the necessary funds, which facilitated the official opening to take place under the stewardship of Galway Chamber, WestBIC and An Forbairt, with Joe Higgins serving as first Chairman of Galway Technology Centre.

“It would be fair to say that Seamus Keating was pivotal to the creation of Galway Technology Centre,” said Frank Greene, GTC Chairman. “Without his immense contribution during those very difficult times for Galway and the West it would not have been possible to establish the centre – a facility which has gone on to support more than 300 companies, over 3,000 jobs and contributed €1.3 billion gross added value to the west region.

“During the course of our preparations for Galway Technology Centre’s anniversary celebrations, we have been taking a close look the centre’s history. While the success of this facility undoubtedly has had many mothers and fathers, we felt we simply had to thank Seamus for all he did. No celebration of the centre would be complete without acknowledging his involvement, his influence and his impact.

“Seamus and the Task Force were innovators. They looked to the future and had a vision of what was possible. It should be remembered that the facility they created was the first tech innovation centre in Ireland. What Seamus and the Task Force put in place has made a massive contribution to Galway and the West ever since.

“Over time we hope to see a number of CEOs, important business figures and key political leaders who have played key roles in supporting the growth of technology and enterprise in the West region presented with the Innovator of the West Award. We are immensely proud that list of recipients will begin with the name of Mr. Seamus Keating. We thank him for all he has done for Galway Technology Centre and we are deeply honoured he agreed to accept this award as part of our Scaling Our Legacy anniversary celebrations,” Mr. Greene concluded.