On April 6, Shana Pembroke was selected to represent Chicago at this year’s International Rose of Tralee Festival in August. Shana was among twenty plus Chicago area women who
interviewed in front of a large audience at the Irish American Heritage Center. All of the finalists impressed the audience and judges as they presented their Chicago and Irish heritage, played a tune, performed a song, entertained with an Irish dance or comedy routine and gracefully responded to the interview questions. The Chicago Rose of Tralee Centre was proud to showcase the accomplishments of these amazing women.
The newest Chicago Rose will head to Tralee in August, where Shana will join over thirty women from around the world hoping to be crowned the next International Rose of Tralee. This year marks the sixtieth anniversary of the Festival, Shana will attend various sponsored events, civic receptions, parades, and the Rose Ball, all while wearing her Chicago Rose sash, and proudly representing her beloved hometown. Shana will be featured live on RTE television on the selection nights Rose of Tralee. Be sure to tune in on August 26-27, the program will be live streamed from the Rose of Tralee webpage: https://www.roseoftralee.ie.
Shana graduated from the University of Illinois and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in speech-language pathology at St Mary’s College, where she also runs a support group for individuals with Parkinson’s Disease. Shana plans to work with children on the autism spectrum and individuals who use augmentative and alternative communication, following graduation.
When not pursuing her studies, you will find Shana running the Lakefront, competing in half marathons and volunteering for organizations like Girls on the Run Chicago and Chicago Autism Project. Shana is active in community theater, sings, dances and was member of top ten internationally-ranked collegiate A Cappella group, No Comment A Cappella. She recently sang the National Anthem at the Twelfth annual Papa Hops Softball Tournaments hosted by the Tom Hopkins foundation which has raised thousands of dollars to support local families affected by cancer and a portion of the proceeds is also shared with ten Catholic grade schools.
Shana’s father hails from Currow, Kerry and maternal grandparents come from Knock, Co. Mayo, she is the youngest of two sisters. Her parents and sisters will attend the Festival to cheer her on, family from Chicago, Kerry, Mayo, Dublin, and Toronto also plan to attend the festival and provide a magnitude of support. Her family in Kerry are eagerly waiting for her arrival!
Since becoming the Chicago Rose, Shana represented the Chicago Rose Centre as a volunteer at Gaelic Park Fest, Irish Fest at the Irish American Heritage Center, and she attended the New England Rose Selection night in Boston as well as Women of Concern awards ceremony, celebrating the accomplishments of women and girls around the world. Shana follows a long history of Chicago Roses and will no doubt represent the City of Chicago and the Irish Diaspora with grace, dignity and pride. Congratulations from all of your fellow Chicago Irish Shana!
For more information and follow to Shana’s travels and experiences please visit our Facebook and Instagram pages. (@chicagoroseoftraleecentre)
~Anne Marie (McGarry) McIntyre