Who are Ireland’s most powerful women?
Country’s top 25 females celebrated at leadership summit
Up to 600 business people gathered at the Four Seasons Hotel today to celebrate the accomplishments of the most influential and powerful women in Ireland.
The sold out Women’s Executive Network (WXN) Leadership Summit and Awards Gala also offered advice to women in business and discussed the need for more women in more senior positions.
“In Europe, the most senior positions are still predominantly held by men, whether in business, politics or other fields," said WXN Founder Pamela Jeffery.
"In March this year, the European Commission noted that women only account for an average of 18pc of the members of boards of directors in the largest publicly-listed companies and 3pc of the CEOs. They recognise that, despite a concerted effort in many companies, progress is too slow to deliver the Commission’s target of 40pc by 2020.”
Some of the inspirational ladies who were at the event included European Ombudsman Emily O’Reilly, Microsoft Ireland MD, Cathriona Hallahan and the Most Reverend Pat Storey, Bishop of Meath and Kildare.
“Our members want to celebrate, highlight and aspire to the success of Top 25 Award Winners and WXN speakers. More than anything, WXN members want to see how successful women have managed their career and life-journey and see if they can replicate that success,” said Ms Jeffery.
“Women network differently to men, and WXN provides them an opportunity to create new networks, while educating themselves professionally.”
The categories and full list of winners can be seen below.
HSBC Corporate Executives Award - Ten women who hold the most senior positions in Ireland’s largest companies by annual turnover and Ireland’s largest companies by number of employees.
• Sharon Buckley, Group Commercial and Supply Chain Director, Musgrave Group
• Rosaleen Burke, Vice President, Quality Assurance, Supply Chain and International, Boston Scientific
• Maeve Coffey, Head of HR, Noonan
• Sarah Gallagher, Legal Affairs Director, Tesco Ireland
• Cathriona Hallahan, Managing Director, Microsoft Ireland
• Orla Hunt, Group HR Director, AIB
• Aisling Keegan, Executive Director and General Manager, Private Large Commercial Business, Dell UK
• Ann Keenan, Head of Group Human Resources, DCC Plc
• Jennifer Kelly, Global Director, Real Estate and Facilities, Google
• Maria Smith, Vice President & Assistant Corporate Controller, Oracle Corporation
Entrepreneurs Award - Three women who own and operate Ireland’s largest companies defined in terms of turnover.
• Judy Byrne, HR Director & Co-Founder, Crewlink Ireland
• Ramona Nicholas, Joint Managing Director & Co-Founder, Cara Group
• Marian O’Gorman, CEO, Kilkenny Group
Public Sector Leaders Award - Four women who hold senior positions and are making an impact on the public sector in Ireland and/or in Europe.
• Catherine Day, Secretary-General, European Commission
• Ann Doherty, CEO, UL Hospitals
• Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, European Commission
• Laverne McGuinness, Chief Operations Officer & Deputy Director General, HSE
Trailblazers Award - Five women who have ignored boundaries and burst through barriers. Each winner is the first Irish woman to achieve such a notable accomplishment.
• Anna May McHugh, Managing Director, National Ploughing Association
• Emily O’Reilly, European Ombudsman
• Orla O’Sullivan, Musician
• Samantha Power, United States Ambassador to the United Nations
• Most Reverend Pat Storey, Bishop of Meath and Kildare, Church of Ireland
Arts & Culture - Three women who have added to and continued Irish cultural discussion through art, music, literature, broadcasting, journalism, film or the performing arts.
• Kitty Holland, Journalist, The Irish Times
• Orla Kiely, Founder, Kiely Rowan Plc
• Dearbhla Walsh, Film & Television Director
Hall of Fame
For the first time this year, three additional women will be inducted into the Hall of Fame. These women have won the Top 25 Award two times and have been selected for recognition of their noteworthy achievements.
• Maeve Carton, Finance Director, CRH
• Anne Heraty, Chief Executive, Cpl Resources Plc
• Brid Horan, Deputy Chief Executive, ESB