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Wednesday 21 August 2019

Women in Media conference dedicated to Lyra McKee

Lyra McKee: The young journalist was laid to rest on Wednesday. Picture: PA
Lyra McKee: The young journalist was laid to rest on Wednesday. Picture: PA
RTE Prime Time Political Correspondent Katie Hannon, Vodafone CEO Anne O'Leary and RTE broadcaster and journalist Miriam O'Callaghan at the launch of the Women in Media conference that will be held in Ballybunion, County Kerry from April 26th to 28th
Jane Last

Jane Last

This year's Women in Media conference has been dedicated to the memory of murdered journalist Lyra McKee.

The event - now in it's seventh year and sponsored by Vodafone - got underway this evening, with founder Joan O'Connor leading those attending the conference into a moment's silence for Ms McKee.

Ms O'Connor said "conversation is the essence" of the event this weekend, saying Lyra McKee highlighted the "importance of conversation in driving social change".

"Through conversation, we may not solve all of the problems facing us, but it's a starting point. It should encourage us to continue trying to bring about change and it most certainly should encourage us to engage in this weekend of good gritty conversation," Ms O'Connor said.

Vodafone CEO Anne O'Leary told the conference that an increase in the amount of women in leadership roles is very important, stressing "we need female voices present in all debates, including media".

Best-selling authors Sinead Moriarty, Felicity Hayes-McCoy and Claudia Carroll joined host Barbara Scully for the first panel discussion this evening on 'Telling Our Stories'.

The event - which is taking place in Kilcooly's hotel in Ballybunion - will see other panel discussions over the weekend, including 'Women in STEM' and Ireland's future post-Brexit.

Former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern, broadcasters Miriam O'Callaghan and Keelin Shanley, MEP Mairead McGuinness and Vodafone CEO Anne O'Leary are just some of the names who will feature in the discussions over the weekend.

A gala event will take place tomorrow night, during which the recipients of the Mary Cummins Award for Women of Outstanding Achievement in the Media, the Joan Kennelly Special Award and the Social Media Award will be announced.

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