The daughter of a Wexford town woman has beaten off competition from top business directors from RTE and the ESB to win a national award.
Claudia Goucol won the Graham Norton Most Inspiring Managing Director, Inspiring Gin Award at the Silver Springs Hotel in Cork.
Originally from Bristol, Claudia's mother Susan Casserly hails from Co Wexford and her father, Leon is from Jamaica.
She attended secondary school in Wexford Vocational College, completing a degree in Journalism afterwards at DCU.
Straight out of college Claudia started working for Xposé and was appointed fashion editor. She subsequently did freelance work and got a job with Melissa Carter, owner of Ireland's number one selling false tan brand Coco Brown.
Claudia was offered a job as head of creative director and worked on creating new products and branding. Today Coco Brown products are selling in Penny's and in Boots and Superdrug in the UK and at numerous outlets in Ireland.
Claudia said: 'Melissa and I then worked on Carter Beauty which launched in November of last year. The company has 130 products some of which are stocked in outlets in Co Wexford including McAuley's and Grants Pharmacy.'
Claudia was named managing director and has been expanding the Carter brand into several European markets including Sweden and this week, Spain.
At only 26 her star is on the rise and she was overwhelmed to hear she had been nominated for the Inspiring Businesswoman award.
Claudia was bowled over to be presented the award from Miriam O'Callaghan, saying: 'I was so convinced I wasn't going to win. It was such an honour.'