Network Ireland Business Women of the Year Awards celebrate the excellence, professionalism, vision and leadership of our members. In Kildare, we encourage all our members to avail of this wonderful opportunity and prestigious award - benefitting both your own self development as well as promoting your brand / business.
Putting yourself forward for an award is a valuable experience, in the words of our 2017 winner, Karen Leigh of Sensational Kids:
"I would encourage everyone to apply for the Network Ireland Awards. It's really a very useful process to participate in as it will assist you with future business planning whilst taking the time to tell your story. Knowing that judging panel were of high calibre and specially chosen to understand our business sector was very reassuring too - we found them to be very supportive and understanding. It was a great boost for all of our team at Sensational Kids to win the local and national awards, providing us with valuable validation of our work. Winning has given us increased exposure of the work that we do too. I would highly recommend applying for this years awards. Go for it. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain!"
2016 Regional & National winner Emma Murphy sharing her thoughts on the Network Awards.
“Just Go For it - No one knows your business like you. Share your story. Celebrate your successes. It can be daunting to enter but feel the fear & do it anyway! Trust me it's an amazing experience that you won't regret. I have memories that will last a lifetime plus I created Network connections that are always there to support. Network also offers endless business opportunities”
So get out those application forms- you have until April 13th! If you have any questions on the application or process feel free to get in touch - Happy to help, that's what Network is about; working together to help each other achieve greater things.
Good Luck, Emma x
To summarise, and in the words of our 2018 Awards Co-ordinator Stella Johnson:
Network Ireland Kildare is one of sixteen Network Ireland’s branches nationwide. Each year, every branch hosts local business awards for a variety of categories. All categories have been set by Network Ireland and are all run under the same rules and regulations. By having six categories, this enablesALL members eligible to enter the awards in a category relevant to their business/status. This year, all members will be able to enter their business in the new separate technology category - ‘ Best Use of Digital in your Business ‘
Whether you are a members for 10 years or 10 days, every member is invited and encouraged to enter the awards. You must be a Member at the time of entry and continue your Membership throughout all of 2018.
Once the entries have closed on April 13th and we in Network Kildare have filled the criteria on the minimum number of entrants received, you will be invited to an interview on Thursday May 3rd where three judges from different Business Sectors will Interview you and choose our Kildare Winners. Our winners will be announced at our Awards Gala Dinner in the Cliff at Lyons on May 25th where you will receive extensive Social Media and PR for your participation.
The Winner of each category will then go forward to the National Awards where they will compete for the “Network Ireland Business Women of the Year” in their chosen category. The Interviews for this stage will take place on August 20th and 21st in the AIB Bank Centre, Ballsbridge, where once again you will be interviewed by a select and diverse panel of National judges across your business sector. The national “Network Ireland Business Women of the Year” will the then be chosen from each category and announced at the National Business Awards and Conference that will take place in Galway on September 14th at the Gala dinner that evening.
To each and every one of you I ask you to seriously consider becoming an award entrant. This may initially appear daunting but it is important for us all to challenge ourselves to succeed in our businesses. The awards application may take a couple of hours out of one of your working days but the mere task of taking time to stop and put on paper your business plans and how and where you have come from to how and where you are going to is time in itself well spent. I was lucky enough to be the Network Ireland national Awards Co- Ordinator for 2017 and having met all of the 34 national finalists before and after their interviews, each of them remarked that it was the best experience and best decision that they made to go forward for the awards as felt they had achieved so much from the process. The PR exposure that they got both locally and nationally was extremely valuable to their business.
Important Dates to remembers:
Applications open date – 13th March 2018
Applications closing Date – 13th April 2018
Network Kildare Interview Dates – May 3rd
Network Kildare Awards Gala Dinner – The Cliff at Lyons – May 25th
National Interview Dates, for all Branch winners in AIB Bank Centre Dublin – August 20th
National Awards Gala Dinner and conference – September 14th – Galway.
All applications must be done on line and a headshot photo uploaded. Please read all of the rules and criteria before filling out the application
The categories are
Emerging New Business (For Businesses less than 3 Years Established, you must own at least 15% of the business)
Large SME – Over 10 Employees (Applicant must own at least 15% of the business)
Small SME – Less than 10 Employees (Applicant must own at least 15% of the business)
Employee – Applicant must be an Employee for at least 12 months with the company at the 31/12/2017.
Arts Category – (Applicant must be the owner of their business)
Social Enterprise – (Applicant must be the founder or in a leading role)
Best use of Digital - (This category can be entered on its own or along with another category and opened to all Business Owners and Employees,)
I do hope that you give this serious consideration and take the opportunity to showcase both yourself and your business by entering our awards.
Please feel free to contact me for any advice or help that you may need for submitting your application.
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Our 2017 Kildare Branch winners were:
Employee Category : Lee-Ann McCarthy, Kildare Village
Social Enterprise Category : Karen Leigh, Sensational Kids
Emerging New Business Category : Dr. Deirdre Kelly, Kelly Scientific
Small Business Category : Karolynn MacHale, Aria Boutique Naas
Special commendation was awarded (in the Small Business Category) to Grainne Slattery, Optiweb
We are delighted that Karen Leigh of Sensational Kids was awarded the National Businesswoman of the Year Award 2017 in the Social Enterprise Category.
In 2016, our Kildare Branch winners were:
Emerging New Business : Shirley Kavanagh-Hallion, Secret Kloset Boutique Kilcullen
Employee : Sonya Moran, Punctual Print
SME <5 employees : Ciara Mooney, Freedom Travel
SME 6-20 employees : Emma Murphy, Party Mad
In addition, Emma Murphy, PartyMad, was awarded “SME (6-20 employee’s) Business Woman of the Year” and Sonia Moran, Punctual Print, was Highly Commended in the Employee Business Woman of the Year category.
In 2015, Kildare branch winners were:
Elaine Madigan, Elaine Madigan Cashmere
Paula Egan, Comprehensive Business Services
In addition, Paula Egan won - for the second time - the national Business Woman of the Year award - a truly remarkable achievement.
In 2014, Kildare branch winners were:
Rebecca Harrisson, Fishers of Newtownmountkennedy
Lorraine Duane, Duane Learning
In 2013, Kildare branch winners were:
Natalie Collins, The Silver Restaurant, Newbridge Silverware
Alison Bough, The Mindfulness Centre
Karen Geraghty, The Osprey Hotel
In 2012, Kildare branch winners were:
Renee McGinn, Tir na nOg Creche
Edel McCabe, Naas Racecourse
Pauline Forde, Heirloom Bridal Bouquets
Our 2011 Kildare branch winners were: