Testing, Testing | While working for the attorney general in Illinois, McInerney took a series of tests to qualify as a government official. “I got a letter that said if I changed my specialty to consul that I would get an immediate appointment. So I switched from political to consul work and was assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Dublin.”
Yes or No Man | McInerney’s job is to interview people requesting visas to the United States and decide whether or not they get one. “I ask them questions to determine if they’re coming back to Ireland. Someone came in recently who has only lived here two months and doesn’t have any ties. She didn’t get a visa.”
Out of Africa | For some types of visas, the embassy charges people what their country charges Americans for the same visa. “An African girl came in not too long after I started. I explained that a six-month visa cost $100 and a 24-month visa was $300. She said she did not have the money, and I told her that as soon as the cost in her country went down, ours would go down. Then she said, ‘My father is the president and I’m going to make sure that cost changes.’ ”
Nice Seeing U2 | When Secretary for Health and Human Resources Tommy Thompson came to Dublin, McInerney was assigned as his site officer to handle any contingency that might arise. “Before his meeting, he had an informal meeting with [U2 lead singer] Bono. I didn’t get to say anything to Bono, but I did get to see him.”
Passing the Bar | “My family is from western Ireland, from a town called Liscannor. I’ve been there to see the grave sites. I’ve gone to the town where one of my great-great-grandmothers had a bar next to St. Brigid’s well, which is supposed to have healing qualities. We drank from the well since the bars were closed for a holiday.”
Family Affair | His wife, Jessica Hansberry, earned a Bachelor of Arts in communications at Xavier in 2000.
Small World | “I listen to the Xavier basketball games on the Internet.”
Up Next | He’s stationed in Ireland for two years, after which he’ll be assigned to another two-year post elsewhere.