The Kerry Association is delighted to announce Professor Michael Mythen as Kerry Person of the Year 2019.
Speaking following the announcement, KAL Chairperson Tom O’Sullivan said, “We’re delighted to have such an accomplished winner in Prof. Mythen this year. Not only distinguished and renowned worldwide in his own field of medicine, but his contribution to Kerry over the decades has been invaluable – be it from his early investments in Kerry Airport through to launching a leading medical conference in Dingle – and truly underscoring the values of the association and it’s membership across Kerry born and further London born generation of Kerry associated people.
Monty will be presented with the award at the KAL’s annual gala dinner on October 18th in what will be a fantastic evening of craic and Kerry connections with Daithí Ó Sé as MC and appearances from Portmagee comedian Bernard Casey, the Local Gossip and many more. last remaining tickets are available on the KAL website, kerryassociationlondon.co.uk”
Bio: Professor Michael (Monty) Mythen MB BS MD FRCA FFICM FCAI (Hon)
Michael (or Monty as he’s been known since medical school days) is the son of Johanna (Joan) Fitzgerald of Lispole and son of the late Nick Mythen of Curracloe. Joan’s parents were Tom Fitzgerald of Lispole and Nel O’Brien originally of Dúnquin. Joan left Lispole for London in 1948 to join the first wave of Irish nurses to work in the new NHS.
As a child Monty used to spend his summer holidays in Dingle each year and remembers with fondness helping his Uncle, the late Senator Tomás Fitzgerald, pull lobster pots and working for his Uncle Pat (Paudie Fitzgerald) in his store, Fitzgerald’s on Main Street. His mother’s brothers, Paudie and Tomas Fitzgerald, have both been instrumental in developing Dingle into the thriving community it is today. Inspired by the competitive cycling success of his older sister & Monty’s mum, his Uncle Pat became famous for winning the Ras Tailteann and then being removed from the starting line of the men’s team road race whilst trying to represent Ireland at the Melbourne Olympics in 1956! Aside from his long term service to Seanad Eireann his Uncle Tomas was used as Robert Mitchum‘s double on more than one occasion during the production of the 1970 film that really put Dingle on the tourist map, Ryan’s Daughter!
Whilst training at the Middlesex Hospital Medical School 1979-1984, Monty organised a memorable medics rugby tour to Kerry and when his own sons, Patrick and Tom were playing mini and youth rugby for Ealing RFC he organised three rugby tours to Kerry playing teams in Tralee and An Gaeltacht.
Back in the 1980s Monty became an early investor in Kerry Airport and more recently with his sisters, became a “Founding Father” of Dingle’s Distillery.
In 1998 Monty had the idea of organising a medical conference at the Dingle Skelligs Hotel bringing anaesthetists from all over the world to Kerry. With fellow anaesthetists from University College Hospital London and the organisational expertise of his late and much loved sister, Siobhan Mythen, the Dingle Medical Conference was born and became so successful and proved enormously popular that it became an annual event. It is now in its 21st year and has attracted more than 3,000 delegates. Over the years delegates have got a real flavour of the Gaeltacht with a reception each year at the Blasket Centre, dinners at Dingle’s restaurants, entertainment by local Irish dancers, yacht racing in the bay, golf at Ceann Sibéal at Ballyferriter and walks to the South Pole Inn in Annascaul.
Recently the conference has run collaboratively with The South of Ireland Association of Anaesthetists and attracts more than 200 delegates each year, many of whom come back to the peninsula with their families for holidays.
Following the success of the Annual Dingle Conference, Monty, Siobhan and colleagues have organised similar meetings in London, Newcastle, Exeter, Chicago, Dallas, Hong Kong, Melbourne and Singapore – always flying the Dingle flag.
In addition to attracting business to Kerry for the past twenty-one years, Monty was also one of the founders of Xtreme Everest, which has taken volunteer trekkers to Everest Base Camp in 2007, 2013 and 2017 to study the effects of hypoxia. The 2007 expedition saw doctors and scientists reach the summit performing invasive tests on themselves up to 8,400m. Data collected has shaped how we look after patients in intensive care. Following the 2007 expedition the team gathered with the majority of the surviving all time Everest summiteers from Ireland and presented the expedition results at the Annual Dingle Conference.
Monty is the Smiths Medical Professor of Anaesthesia and Critical Care at University College London and Director of The UCL Discovery Lab at The London 2012 Olympic legacy Institute of Sport Exercise and Health (ISEH). He worked in North Carolina from 1995-1997 as an Assistant Professor at Duke University Medical Center and acting Chief of Critical Care in the Department of Anesthesiology. He is the founding Editor-in-Chief of the Journal Perioperative Medicine; on the Editorial Board of the British Journal of Anaesthesia; Founding Editor-in-Chief TopMedTalk; Founding Board Member Perioperative Quality Initiative (POQI); Founding President of the International Board of Perioperative Medicine.
Fellowships, Elections & Appointments
Monty was an Elected Council Member of the Royal College of Anaesthetists (2013-2016) and led their Perioperative Medicine Programme. He was Chair of The Board of the National Institute of Academic Anaesthesia, is a Director of Xtreme-Everest, Co-Chairman of Evidence Based Peri-operative Medicine (EBPOM) and Founding Board member and Chair of the advisory board of the American Society of Enhanced Recovery (ASER). Monty was National Clinical Lead at the UK Department of Health for the Enhanced Recovery Partnership in the English NHS from May 2009 – March 2013. He co-authored a review of Adult Critical Care Services in the Republic of Ireland, submitted to the Health Service Executive in September 2009. Monty is an Honorary Member if the Irish College of Anaesthesiologists and has given the Prestigious Magill Plenary Lecture at their Annual Congress in Dublin.
He is married to Kate and they have four children, Patrick, Charlotte, Alice and Tom.
He is honoured and absolutely delighted to receive The Kerry Association’s Award of Kerry Person of the Year 2019.