Gerard Fitzgerald is the president of the Uniformed Firefighters Association of Greater New York (UFA), the civil servants union that represents the over 8,000 firefighters that make up the FDNY.
He has been married to his wife, Eileen, for almost 24 years and is the proud father of two girls, Casey, 20, attending St. Joseph’s College, and Melissa, 18, a student at Quinnipiac University.
He is a proud first-generation Irish American, who has an appreciation for his Irish heritage. His father, Gerard Fitzgerald Sr., was from Crossboyne Co. Mayo, and his mother, Mary Fitzgerald, nee Forde, was born in Rathlacken Co. Mayo.
Throughout his life, he has maintained strong ties to Irish traditions and his family, visiting his family in Ireland frequently.
He has a long history with The Great Irish Fair, working alongside his father at The Ashford Arms tent each year from 1989 to 2004, which has been a very proud participant and a great place for the Irish community to congregate and celebrate their heritage.
Eighteen years ago, Gerard followed his father, a retired NYPD detective, into civil service, when he joined the FDNY. For the past five years, he has worked in the union as an advocate for its members, recently winning election as UFA president.
Whether it is through work as civil servants in the FDNY and NYPD, or throughout the City’s business, religious and non-profit sectors, he believes that Irish-Americans have played an oversized role in the growth and transformation of New York over the last 100-plus years and is honored to receive an award named after one of its greatest heroes, Captain Timothy M. Stackpole.