THE winners of the Network Ireland Limerick Businesswoman of the Year Awards were announced during a special virtual awards ceremony (on Wednesday 19 May).
Chloe Markham, Chloe Markham Stylist, won the Creative Professional Award and Ber Collins, Crystal Clear, won the Established Business Owner. There were two different employee award categories: Lyndsey Hall, Piquant Hall won the Shining Star Award and Aisling Finn, Jaguar Land Rover, won the Rising Star Award. Lynda Sheehan, Rockbarton Garden Centre, won two awards – Solo Businesswoman and the Power Within Champion award.
The awards, which were sponsored by LEO Limerick, AIB, Ingenium and Sales Dynamics celebrate the excellence and professionalism, vision and leadership of its members. In all, 22 finalists were competing across the various categories.
President of Network Ireland Limerick, Caragh O’Shea, along with Awards Co-ordinators Emma Wilson and Karen Brosnahan, announced the winners from a glamorous professional studio set while committee members roamed across the city and county to present trophies to the winners at their homes. Bringing the awards ceremony to the winners’ homes added to the joy and excitement of the virtual awards which was watched by over 100 from Limerick and across the globe.
The winners of each award category will go on to compete at the Network Ireland National Businesswoman of the Year Awards which will be announced on 8th October from the WIT Arena, Waterford. Several Limerick branch members have been successful in the past and include Hannah Wrixon, Get the Shifts, who took home a national award in 2019 and Caroline Dunlea of Core Optimisation in 2018.
Special guest speaker at the Limerick awards night was Maria Walsh MEP. Joining via zoom from her base in Brussels, Maria talked about her unusual journey into politics driven by her passion for diversity and social inclusion. Adding to the occasion, Singer Emma Langford opened and closed the ceremony along with musicians Ann Blake and Ruth Smith.
Speaking at the Awards, Caragh O’Shea, President of Network Ireland Limerick and owner of COS Events, said, “We were thrilled to have 22 finalists for this year’s awards, especially after such an extremely challenging year. Network Ireland is all about encouraging each other to be the best we can be. Our awards are a way to highlight everyone’s potential and recognise those who are passionate about their career or business and show determination to succeed no matter what life throws at them. I would like to congratulate them all and wish our 6 award winners the very best of luck at the nationals.”
“I would like to especially thank the support of our sponsors, LEO Limerick, AIB, Ingenium and Sales Dynamics who enabled us to put on such a professional event. A massive thank you also goes to judges Mary Killeen, LEO Limerick, Shona Keane, AIB and Patrick O’Sullivan, all the suppliers and of course our amazing committee who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes voluntarily,” she continued.
Despite not being able to attend in person, the finalists still got dressed up for the awards and were joined by their family and friends at home as they watched the ceremony via zoom. People tuned in from right across the world for the awards including Spain, US, Amsterdam, London and Brussels.
Over €500 was raised for charity partner Cliona’s on the night through a raffle and donations.