Broadcaster Olivia O'Leary said women still face obstacles when it comes to combining career with children, as she was awarded the Mary Cummins Award for Women of Outstanding Achievement in the Media.
"I was never lonelier as a journalist than the day that I had a child, because we still live in a world where women are left to bear that weight alone. The ensuring of the survival of the race should be central to all economic models but the people who actually do that job are rarely put at the centre of that consideration," she said.
The award was presented in Ballybunion, Co Kerry, at the third 'Women in Media' conference, established to acknowledge two women with strong links to the town - Mary Cummins and Maeve Binchy.
Ms O'Leary joined RTÉ in 1972 and has presented a host of current affairs shows.
The event, which was opened by former Tánaiste Mary Harney, featured talks with leading female media figures, including Irish Independent Legal Affairs Editor Dearbhail McDonald, RTÉ's Miriam O'Callaghan, former editor of the 'Irish Times' Geraldine Kennedy, and publisher Norah Casey.