The Republic of Ireland Women’s National Football Team has been unveiled as the Grand Marshal for the 2023 St Patrick’s Day Parade. Representing the squad at the highly anticipated event on Friday, March 17, will be Team Manager Vera Pauw, former international Paula Gorham and experienced defender and LGBTQ+ role model Diane Caldwell.
To date, Caldwell has represented her country at senior level on 93 occasions and has also enjoyed an illustrious club career with teams like North Carolina Courage, Manchester United and Reading, where she currently plays. She is engaged to Mona Lohmann, a footballer with German side Hegauer FV.
The team, which features an array of queer athletes, including captain and Arsenal star Katie McCabe, made history last year when it secured qualification for the Women’s World Cup for the first time ever. Both as a group and as individuals, they have been praised as inspirations for fans, young and old, across the country.
Speaking about the news, Pauw said, “It is a huge honour for the team to be named as Grand Marshal for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade before we fly to Australia this summer to do the nation proud at the FIFA Women’s World Cup. I feel extremely lucky to represent the squad and will be especially looking forward to seeing all the smiling faces on March 17th.”
Lord Mayor of Dublin, Caroline Conroy, also weighed in, stating: “I think it’s particularly fitting that this year’s Grand Marshal is the Republic of Ireland Women’s National Football Team… They have been an inspiration to us all and we’ll be following their progress closely at the World Cup later this year.”
Echoing this sentiment was St Patrick’s Festival CEO Richard Tierney, who expressed that organisers are “honoured” to have the Irish team as Grand Marshall this year.
“Their hard work and dedication to their game is reflective of the efforts of people up and down the country and beyond as they put the final touches to their performances and get ready to showcase their talents for us all to enjoy on March 17th,” he said.
The 2023 St Patrick’s Day Parade will kick off at 12pm on Friday, March 17, winding down the streets of Dublin from Parnell Square to Kevin St Junction.
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