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Clan MacNeil in Canada Board of Directors

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Vince MacNeil


Vincent “Vince” MacNeil, originally from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, is the son of Edward MacNeil s/o Hector Raymond “Raymond” s/o Hector Raymond s/o Hector s/o James s/o Malcolm s/o John s/o Rory “The Piper” MacNeil (legendary hereditary piper for the Laird of Barra) and the son of Patsy MacNeil d/o Hector Joseph MacNeil s/o Francis Hector (noted genealogist and local historian from Iona, Cape Breton) s/o Hector Rory s/o Rory Mor s/o Donald s/o Ruairi MacNeil.  Rory Mor and his father Donald (of Sandray, Parish of Barra) were two of the four MacNeils who founded Iona, Cape Breton about 1802. Vince is an educator in Halifax, Nova Scotia, a student of Gaelic and currently serves as Clan MacNeil’s genealogist and Newsletter editor.  He also administers / co-administers three MacNeil related Facebook groups: Clan MacNeil in Canada, Clan MacNeil of Barra and Barra's People - A Genealogical Interest Page. Vince studies the genealogy of Barra MacNeils no matter where they emigrated in the world and studies all MacNeil families who lived in Nova Scotia.  He is co-administrator of the MacNeil DNA project at Family Tree DNA.  In addition to the genealogy and genetics of the Clan MacNeil, Vince has studied the language and culture of Barra emigrants in Cape Breton through completion of a thesis entitled A study of Gaelic language and culture in Cape Breton's Barra Gaidhealtachd


Terry Myles

Vice President

I live in Grafton Ontario I am the Vice president along with being the Highland games Co- ordinator  . I attend about six highland games a season in southern Ontario . I have been a member of the clan for 13 years and also belong to Clan MacNeil in the US . We have 2 Westie dogs , Jordie MacNeil and wee Roddy plus a poodle mix called Brody . I really embrace my Scottish heritage and attend Robbie burns dinners , Tartan day celebrations and also am on the CASSOC board. My grandmother ‘s name was Margaret McNeill and she instilled my interest in Scotland; She was born in Ayr , Scotland, and she always told us growing up that we were MacNeil’s from Barra


Debby Stevenson


Debby has always been interested in her culture and heritage. Although she has been involved with other dance disciplines, Highland has been her passion as a dancer, teacher and judge. With more free time, Debby has brought the chanter out of storage and is attempting to learn Gaelic.She looks forward to making that return trip to Barra..

Kathy Benzi

Secretary and Director

Kathy lives outside Boston, Massachusetts and has been active in Cape Breton genealogy for 25+years.  In 2016, Kathy and 9 other members of her family traveled to Barra, Scotland for a memorable visit.  Kathy's great-grandfather, Michael MacNeil was born on Boularderie Island, Cape Breton and Kathy has other MacNeil ancestors from the Beaver Cove/Glasgow area and Shenacadie/Washabuck area.  Kathy has been a member of the Clan MacNeil of Canada for several years.

Suzanne McNeill


Suzanne got involved with Clan MacNeil founder because her grandfather Andrew McNeill was the founder. He immigrated to Canada in the 1950's. She works as an Optometrist in Hamilton and is interested in Aerial Silks and violin.


Fr Paul MacNeil


My name is Fr. Paul MacNeil, my Mom is Teresa O’Flaherty of River Ryan Nova Scotia, and my Dad is Don MacNeil from Reserve mines in Cape Breton, son of Joe and Anne MacNeil. I was born in St. Catharines, my brother Don was born in Nova Scotia. In 1984 I entered St. Peter’s seminary to be a Roman Catholic Priest and I left the seminary in 1989 to pursue further studies in philosophy. I have a Master’s degree in philosophy from McMaster University in Hamilton and the University of Louvain in Belgium.  I did extensive volunteer work with St. Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity in Kolkata in 1992 (Calcutta) and after that I spent 2 years teaching English in South Korea. I returned to Canada in 1996 and entered the Christ the King seminary in Buffalo that same fall. I was ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood in June of 1999 and served in several parishes throughout the diocese of St. Catharines. I am currently pastor of Our Lady of the Scapular parish in Niagara Falls and Episcopal Vicar for Education for the diocese of St. Catharines. I’m also working part time on my PhD in postmodern religious thought.

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