Top businesswomen recognised at Network Mayo awards luncheon

From left is Businesswoman of the Year Caroline Joyce (best established business) with RTÉ newscaster Sharon Ní Bheoláin, and Network Mayo president Toni Bourke. Photo: Michael McLaughlin.

From left is Businesswoman of the Year Caroline Joyce (best established business) with RTÉ newscaster Sharon Ní Bheoláin, and Network Mayo president Toni Bourke. Photo: Michael McLaughlin.

A entrepreneur with the Travel Bug, a skin care expert and a Westport GP were named as Mayo's Businesswomen of the Year at a recent awards luncheon by the women in business networking group, Network Mayo.

RTÉ news anchor Sharon Ní Bheoláin was the guest of honour at the awards in the Mulranny Park Hotel, which are designed to showcase Mayo's most impressive businesswomen.

There are three categories for Businesswoman of the Year in an established business; Businesswoman of the Year in a new business; and Businesswoman of the Year as an employee.

Caroline Joyce, the founder of Travel Bug Ltd. was named the overall winner in the established business category.

Ms Joyce has grown two successful businesses, Cara International being the other one, which focus on cultural exchance and international placements.

Her companies have placed in excess of 4,000 people on cultural exchange programmes around the world.

In the new business category, Sinead Scahill of the Skin Deep Institute was the overall winner.

Ms Scahill, a skin care expert and lecturer, set-up the Skin Deep Institute in 2012 to offer recognised and accredited courses in the beauty therapy industry for beauty therapists across the west of Ireland.

Ailíse Loftus GP, from Westport Medical Centre, won out in the employee category. Dr Loftus offers a broad range of services to patients, including general medical assessments, family planning, occupational health assessments, and lifestyle and wellness checks within an innovative and holistic family practice.

Toni Bourke, president of Network Mayo, said the high calibre of applicants for this year's awards is "testament to the calibre of members who are part of our great organisation".

She thanked all the applicants and wished the three winners every success as they go forward to represent Mayo in Network Ireland National Award finals in September.

Runners-up in the three categories were Anne Conlon, All About Sales (established business ); Susan Heffernan, tourism and marketing consultant (new business ); and Maria Kelly, Arcon Recruitment (employee ).

The sponsors for this year’s awards were AIB, Mayo LEO, BNI, Caroline Gordon Accountants, Beverly Hills, Arcon Recruitment, All In Design and Print, and Irish TV.

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