A Killeeshil accountant has turned every young Irish girl’s dream into reality by landing the title of Scottish Rose in this year’s Rose of Tralee competition.
Talented singer Michelle Kelly will now be whisked away from her accounting job at PwC’s Edinburgh offices to a busy schedule of interviews, photo shoots and more singing as the Scottish ambassador to Ireland’s most famous beauty pageant.
It is hoped that Michelle will do the country and her home parish proud when the regional finals take place in Portlaoise later this month.
Michelle was initially selected as the Edinburgh Rose, and then went on to win the Scottish Rose nomination after an award ceremony last weekend.
She sang and underwent two interviews to secure the nomination from a field of approximately twenty contestants.
“I’m not surprised that Michelle is the Scottish Rose”, said her father, Damian Kelly, who is headmaster of St Mary’s Primary School, Cabra.
“She looks well, talks well, and is very talented musically, and is very hard working at her profession”, he said.
“In all respects she is the perfect candidate for the competition. She is a great conversationalist, and I can honestly say that you’ll never be bored listening to Michelle.”
Michelle is a gifted violin player and has sung at weddings and church ceremonies. Until she broke her collar bone, she was a rising GAA star, captaining the Tyrone Minors and winning an All-Star award.
She has also worked extensively for Dromantine charity Friends of Africa.
After studying at Newcastle University, Michelle was fast-tracked through her accountancy training by her employers PWC and became a chartered accountant at 22.
“Michelle loves Scotland and the out-doors and is enjoying her life there in what is a wonderful and very picturesque city”, added her father.
“I always wanted her to pursue education as a career as I thought she would make a dream teacher. It’s wonderful to see her great interpersonal skills being recognised in this way, and it’s lovely to see how all the former and current Northern Ireland and Scottish Roses are supporting each other materially and emotionally.”