PITTSBURGH – County Executive Rich Fitzgerald today crowned Maggie Marie Donaldson of West Deer Township as Miss Smiling Irish Eyes 2013. Fitzgerald’s participation in the ceremony also included recognition of Miss Smiling Irish Eyes’ court maidens, Shea Shovlin and Erin Marie McMahon.
“There are a lot of things I love about this job, but having the honor of crowning Miss Smiling Irish Eyes is definitely one of the highlights,” said Fitzgerald. “Obviously, I have a special fondness for the Irish and the traditions that we honor through Miss Smiling Irish Eyes and our annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Maggie, Shea and Erin are outstanding examples of the amazing young people that call Pittsburgh and Allegheny County home. Contrary to the perception of young people that many have, these three young women are engaged and accomplished students who are volunteers in the community that actively promote their Irish heritage.”
The crowning of Miss Smiling Irish Eyes is a tradition that dates back to the late 1960s when the Allegheny County Commissioners crowned the queen in session. The County Executive now has the honor and privilege of crowning her.
Maggie Marie Donaldson, the daughter of Tom and Lilli Donaldson, resides in West Deer Township. A student at Deer Lakes High School and the Western Pennsylvania School for the Deaf (WPSD), she is an honor roll student and member of the National Honor Society. She is the Class of 2013 Vice President, the 2013 Student Body Government Vice President and the Valedictorian of the Class of 2013. She lettered in track, volleyball, cheerleading and softball, and serves as president of the junior Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians – Division 23. Of her many volunteer efforts, Maggie organized volunteers to do the hair, make-up and nails for attendees of the WPSD Prom in 2012 and 2013. She also arranged a drive to collect Prom gowns for the students at the school. After graduation, she plans to attend a four-year university, majoring in biology, to pursue a career in marine biology, specializing in environmental issues and the impact on marine life.
Court maiden Shea Shovlin resides in Edgewood and is a Senior honors student at Oakland Catholic High School. She plans on attending Rutgers University in the fall.
Court maiden Erin Marie McMahon is from South Park. She is a senior at South Park High School, and an honors student, who intends to attend the University of Pittsburgh in the fall.
Miss Smiling Irish Eyes must be a single woman between the ages of 17 and 22, of Irish birth or descent, of good moral character, and an active promoter of her Irish ancestry. As part of her duties, Miss Smiling Irish Eyes participates in ceremonial functions leading up to and including the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.