New York Rose Róisín Wiley answers ten questions with I Love Limerick.
New York Rose, Róisín Wiley, with a Limerick connection is excited to represent her state at this August’s Rose of Tralee Festival
Róisín Wiley, VP & National Sales Representative of a consumer marketing company, will represent New York at the 2023 International Rose of Tralee Festival, this August in Tralee, Co Kerry.
Born to Majella O’Reilly and Eddie Wiley, both hailing from Limerick, Róisín’s family history is deeply intertwined with the beautiful communities of Templeglantine and Kilmallock, she told I Love Limerick, “I’m very excited to represent New York, but my parents may name me an honorary Limerick Rose given our strong roots.”
The New York Rose Selection brunch was held at the Kerry Hall in Yonkers on Sunday, June 25.
What was your childhood like and where did you grow up?
I had an amazing childhood. My mom, Majella, and dad, Eddie, raised my younger brother, John, and me in Tuckahoe, New York. We moved to Tuckahoe, from Woodlawn in the Bronx when we were 5 and 6. John and I were both very involved in sports, music, dance, and clubs at school – I specifically loved Irish Dancing & soccer. We have been lucky to travel back to Ireland every year to visit our family in Limerick, and that’s a tradition I hope to keep with my family one day as well. I graduated from Fairfield University located in Connecticut, in 2017, and studied Marketing and Public Relations. In my time there I was lucky enough to spend a semester abroad in Florence, Italy and travelled all around Europe. I now live in downtown Manhattan working in Sales & Marketing.
Why did you want to take part in the Rose of Tralee contest?
I applied to the New York Rose of Tralee because I felt motivated by the opportunity to be a leader in a community that felt like home. If anything, I was hoping to meet a group of inspiring young Irish woman in New York, and to celebrate our Irish heritage together. The Rose organization has given me the confidence to embrace what makes me beautiful and what makes me different, and has also inspired me to give back to my community and to leave a legacy that I am proud of.
Tell us about your Irish roots in County Limerick
Both my mom and dad were born & grew up in Limerick. My mom, Majella O’Reilly, grew up in Templeglantine, and my dad, Eddie Wiley, grew up in Kilmallock. My parents moved to New York in their 20s – they’re the only ones of their siblings to move over, so all of extended family are still in Ireland (mostly Limerick). When I was 4 years old, my parents built a house in Patrickswell, and moved my brother and I over. We ended up moving back to New York about a year later. We’ve been very lucky to travel back to Ireland yearly, with my parents traveling back multiple times a year. I was Christened in Adare, and it is my dream to get married in the church in Adare and at Adare Manor.
What social issues are you most passionate about?
I am passionate about mental health awareness and support. I see the pressure that is put on us every day through unrealistic expectations of who we should be, what we should look like, or what life should be like, and it is debilitating. I encourage continuing the open dialogue on the importance of mental health, and I would like to focus on actionable items for those suffering to take, to help themselves.
Have you faced any struggles getting to where you are now?
I am very lucky to say that I’ve lived a wonderfully blessed life. The struggles that I’ve faced are probably very similar to ones that we have all faced growing up, and finding ourself and what makes us feel fulfilled and happy. Specifically during the pandemic, when everyone’s life was turned upside down, I had a bit of a harder time finding my way back to the life that I was hoping to be living at 26/27. I was finding it hard to regain my control with so many changes in my life, and felt lost with no direction. What helped me the most in regaining my happiness was taking small steps, and focusing on what I could control. I had to learn to give myself grace, and to trust the process.
What is your proudest achievement so far?
My proudest achievement so far is being named the New York Rose. The reason I am so proud of this is because the title feels so much bigger than me – I am the NY Rose because of my family and friends, and the people that have supported and encouraged me to get to this point. I feel so proud to represent everyone that has supported me, and it truly feels like a “win” for so many, because I would not be here without them. I am proud to represent the people that gave me the support, courage, and confidence to be named the NY Rose.
Do you have any advice for your younger self, or young people who may want to be like you?
The biggest piece of advice I would give myself is to trust that everything will work out, and that everything happens for a reason. I know that it can be very hard to trust that in certain moments, but some of our toughest moments shape us in the most important ways. We are continuously learning and becoming stronger, so let yourself experience the good and the bad and try to stay present through it all.
Do you have any upcoming projects that you’re working on?
At the moment, no! I recently move into NYC so I’m focused on settling down in the city. There’s so much to explore, and I love getting the chance to learn something new about the city every week.
Where do you see yourself in five years time?
Great question haha…I’d love to think in 5 years that I would be starting a family. Between now and then I hope to continue focusing on growing and learning in my career. I also hope to spend a lot of time traveling – I would love to see more of the world (particularly Europe), and take advantage of the independence I have as a young adult. In 5 years, I will be 32, so I hope by then I’m settling a bit and starting to build a family.
Lastly, what do you love most about Limerick?
The thing I love most about Limerick is the passion. My mom and dad are two of the most proud Limerick supporters I know. My parents founded Club Limerick New York in 2018 with a few others from Limerick. Growing this community has become a major part of our lives, and it’s been so amazing to see how passionate and proud my parents and their friends are of their home county, that they moved away from 30+ years ago. The passion and love is always there, and that’s what I love the most.