Two lists appeared over the past weekend that revealed the wealth and influence of Irish people. And quite a few had links to Kildare.
The Sunday Times released its 2012 Richlist for Britain and Ireland and featured, for the first time, Jedward.
The 20 year old Rathangan-natives, John and Edward Grimes, have made it to the list for the first time. They are listed in a special category of ‘Ireland’s Young Rich’ at number 14, with an estimated value of €2 million.
And at number 65 with a reported value of €110 million is Tommy and Geraldine Tougher. Their wealth comes from oil distribution, a hotel, restaurant and property development.
At number five is the Guinness family who have ancestral links to Leixlip. They are said to be worth €1.024 billion.
The Ryans, the family of the late Ryanair founder Tony Ryan, have links to the Lyons Estate near Celbridge and are at number 12, said to be worth €492 million.
At number 17 is Michael, Nigel and Stephen O’Flaherty and their family. Nigel is based in Kildare and with his brother Michael own O’Flaherty holdings which owns Ireland’s Mercedes Benz franchise.
The next generation, their sons Stephen and Michael C are also involved. They’re said to be valued at €478 million.
With a reported value of €405 million Michael Smurfit is at number 21. Between him and his family, they own the K-club in Straffan and Forenaughts estate near Naas.
At number 23 is Tony O’Reilly or Sir Anthony as he likes to be called these days. They occasionally live at their Castlemartin estate near Kilcullen. He and his wife are said to be worth €388 million.
Denis and Caroline Desmond aren’t based in, or from Kildare, but through their involvement in the Oxegen Festival, Abrakebabra, O’Brien’s Sandwich Bars, the Bagel Factory and Gourmet Burger chains, they are well represented across Kildare.
Meanwhile the Sunday Independent published a list called the 60 Most Influential People and included just two Kildare-based people.
The former attorney general David Byrne is a Monasterevan native. He was educated in Newbridge College and became a barrister.
He was appointed by the FF/PD Government as Attorney General in 1997.
In 1999 he was appointed the EU commissioner for Health and Consumer Protection until 2004 when he was replaced by another Kildare man, Charlie McCreevy.
Since then he has been appointed to the boards of Kingspan and Irish Life.
He is also the chairman of an advisory committee to the National Treasury Management Agency and on the board of the National Concert Hall.
He is the current Chancellor of DCU.
Alan Dukes lives in Kildare town and is husband of former Kildare County Councillor Fionnuala Dukes.
He is a former Fine Gale Minister for Transport and former Fine Gael party leader.
Since leaving politics he has worked as a consultant for public relations firm Wilson Hartnell and was Director General of the Institute of European Affairs from 2003 to 2007.
He was appointed to the board of Anglo Irish Bank when the bank was taken over by the state and became its chairman in 2008.