Richard Maynes
Aer Rianta International

Category: Beauty / Irish Fashion and Accessories Designer 

With 12+ years in senior retail, Richard moved to Ireland from the UK in 2020 to become ARI’s Global Head of Fashion & Accessories. He oversees the global strategy, meets business targets, and manages growth across channels.

Leading a team of 9 buyers, Richard handles 150+ brands and 40,000+ SKUs in a multimillion-euro category. Under his leadership, ARI launched several innovative retail concepts, including the industry’s first pre-loved fashion store in YUL Montréal-Trudeau Airport. Before ARI, he was at Debenhams for 7 years, where he led Accessories to become the UK’s market leader in 2019. 

Richard holds degrees in Fashion and Psychology.

Richard Miley
An Post

Category: Beauty / Irish Fashion and Accessories Designer

Richard Miley is Marketing Communications Lead at An Post. A passionate marketeer with extensive experience and industry knowledge, Richard leads the marketing function across the Mails and Parcels division. His journey within An Post has taken the brand and commercial results to new heights, supporting the business transformation from a letter focused operation to a thriving eCommerce logistics partner. 

He has lead award-winning campaigns including An Post’s ‘Tin Man’ Send Love at Christmas; Digital Stamp, Covid ‘Send Love’ activations and the Advantage Card, which has delivered €10 million in discounted postage to SMEs.

Eddie Shanahan

Category: Beauty / Irish Fashion and Accessories Designer

Eddie Shanahan is Chair of the Council of Irish Fashion Designers. The CIFD is a Founder Member of the European Fashion Alliance that seeks to create a sustainable eco system for the European fashion sector.

He established the CREATE project with Brown Thomas that showcases Irish design at Ireland’s premier luxury store on an annual basis.

In his private consultancy practice Eddie specialises in business and product development for the fashion, craft and retail sectors.

He is a regular commentator on business and lifestyle issues in print and broadcast media.

Shane Cox
Center Parcs

Category: Retail 

Shane joined Center Parcs in November 2018 and currently sits on the Senior Leadership Team as Human Resources Manager. He leads the core HR function within Center Parcs, which also includes the Resourcing and Retention team as well as the Village Medical and First Aid Center. 

Shane has over 16 years of dedicated HR experience with past roles in both the Retail and Construction industries, where he has operated at both operational and strategic level. 

He is extremely passionate about people, business focused and committed to driving high standards of excellence.

Monica O'Byrne
Clayton Hotel

Category: Retail

Monica O’Byrne is a dedicated hospitality industry professional with over 20 years’ experience in the Meetings, Incentive, Conference and Events markets. She heads the Sales & Marketing Team at the Clayton Hotel Burlington Road, Dublin City’s Largest Conference Hotel. 

Previous roles have included Director of Sales & Marketing at Fitzpatrick Hotel Group, Brennan Hotels, Past Chair of Kilkenny Tourism & Director of Sales & Marketing at Carton House Resort. 

Monica has also worked hard to create sustainable alliances across the venues sector, to collaborate and win business for Ireland.

Sam Johnston
Dublin Convention Bureau

Category: Retail                         

Sam has managed Fáilte Ireland’s Dublin Convention Bureau for 8 years, seeing confirmed business double in that period before the effects of the pandemic.  That success and experience has also given him responsibility for the Convention Bureaux in Cork, Kerry, Shannon Region and Galway. Before moving into the business events sector, Sam worked in leisure tourism in rural and urban DMOs.  Sam has a deep understanding of the need for urgent action to address the climate crisis within the tourism industry and leads the charge to more sustainable practices. 

Patrick Farrell

Category: Professional Services / Business Support Solutions 

Patrick has over 25 years’ experience across the banking industry. Patrick joined the Bank in December 2018 as Retail Banking Director. 

Patrick has previously held senior management roles in Strategy, Product and Proposition Development, Marketing, Private Banking and, Retail Sales and Service Distribution. The Retail Banking Division is responsible for all sales and service channels and the Bank’s product management strategy. The Function has multi-channel oversight across sales and service with a focus on improving customer experience, meeting customer needs and wants, enabling income growth and delivery.

John Reade
FBD Insurance

Category: Professional Services / Business Support Solutions 

John has over 30 years of experience in the Insurance industry. John joined FBD in 1999 and over this time has held a number of senior technical and sales management positions.

As Head of Business Insurance, John is particularly passionate about building on FBD’s 50 year history of providing business customers with great value, tailor made insurance solutions from Ireland’s only homegrown insurer while remaining committed to supporting local communities across the country.

Joseph Collum
IDA Ireland

Category: Professional Services / Business Support Solutions 

Joseph Collum is a member of IDA’s new Green Economy Department. The Dept was established to enable the delivery of IDA’s sustainability Strategy and has a specific focus in supporting IDA & its client companies decarbonise their operations and attract FDI in the green economy to Ireland. 

Joe has specific responsibility for attracting green economy investment from the US and Northern Europe and in supporting clients in the Life Sciences, Engineering and Technology sectors. 

Prior to this Joe held senior roles in Chanelle Pharmaceuticals, Glanbia, eir and Mondelez.

Aisling Lee
STP Packaging

Category: Family Run Business

Aisling Lee is the Managing Director of Southern Tapes & Packaging, a family-run packaging solutions business established in 1984. 

Aisling’s focus is on cultivating a healthy work-life balance for her employees and advocating for sustainable packaging solutions. In 2022, she successfully introduced a 32-hour workweek to enhance employee well-being, boost morale, and contribute to a positive impact on the environment. 

Aisling and the team at STP Packaging prioritize sustainability, offering eco-friendly materials, efficient design, and manufacturing to help businesses minimize waste and adopt environmentally friendly practices.

JP Sisk
Sisk Group

Category: Family Run Business

JP Sisk is a main board member of the Sisk Group since 2005. He has been head of their Real Estate business since 2011.   

Alan Mulcahy

Category: Family Run Business

Alan Mulcahy is the Head of Sales for Energia. He has been with Energia for 22 years and is responsible for the overall sales strategy and performance of the Residential and Business sales channels, continuously strategically analysing the market and adapting sales strategies accordingly. Using keen market insights, coupled with the ability to anticipate industry trends, has continuously provided the sales team with a competitive edge. Energia excels in fostering strong relationships with clients. They prioritise understanding their unique requirements and providing tailored solutions, resulting in long lasting partnerships.

Emma Doherty

Category: Pharmaceutical and Healthcare

Emma Doherty is a partner in Matheson’s market-leading Corporate and Commercial Department and is also a member of the firm’s International Business Group. She works with many of Ireland’s leading indigenous and multinational companies across a broad range of sectors. 

She is a member of the Company Law Review Group, the statutory advisory expert body charged with advising the Minister for Business, Enterprise & Innovation on the review and development of company law in Ireland. 

In June 2021, Emma won the Corporate Governance Lawyer of the Year Award at the Women in Business Law Awards Europe 2021.

Gillian Harford
30% Club Ireland

Category: Pharmaceutical and Healthcare

Gillian Harford is a senior HR Executive who works directly with client organisations focusing on diversity and workplace change. 

Sponsored by Matheson LLP she also operates as the Country Executive for the 30% Club, a global campaign supported by Chairs and CEOs driving gender balance on Boards and at cSuite. 

Gillian is the former Head of HR Strategy & Planning with AIB where, with a career spanning almost 40 years, she has been responsible for significant people change with particular focus on Culture, Career, Diversity and Agile Work. 

Matt Moran

Category: Pharmaceutical and Healthcare

Matthew Moran, former Director of BioPharmaChem Ireland, is now an independent consultant specializing in Life Sciences and Biopharma manufacturing. He holds a Chemistry degree from Trinity College Dublin, a Chemical Engineering degree from University College Dublin, and an MBA from University College Dublin’s Smurfit School of Business. With over a decade of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, Matthew has held various management positions in active ingredient and dosage form manufacturing. He was a board member of CEFIC/APIC (European API Industry) and Europabio (European Biotech Sector).

Carmel Biggane
Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland

Category: Food Supplier or Producer / Beverage Supplier or Producer

Food Academy Manager at Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland, Carmel leads out the dedicated Food Academy programme in SuperValu which supports the development and growth of 300 small Irish Food & Drinks producers .  

Carmel has extensive expertise in retail buying and brand design across chill, frozen and ambient retail categories.

Conor O'Flynn
Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland

Category: Food Supplier or Producer / Beverage Supplier or Producer

Conor O’Flynn is the Trading Manager for the Beer & Spirits categories in Musgrave Retail Partners developing the range & consumer offer for SuperValu & Centra stores in Ireland. 

He is a qualified account with over 17 years of Retail experience in Musgrave across both Finance & Trading departments. 

Roann Byrne

Category: Food Supplier or Producer / Beverage Supplier or Producer 

Roann Byrne is a chef, food writer, academic and co-founder of Danu, a company founded in 2023 that focuses on developing technology across the Irish food and drink industry. 

Since building her own cake business at 16, she has worked all across Irish food. She pairs her practical food knowledge with forever learning, obtaining two degrees an MA Gastronomy by age 23. Passionate about the possibilities for growth and innovation in Irish food, the unrecognized potential of social enterprises and their engagement with young people and food security. Her engagement in Irish food has been recognized as one of The Irish Time’s ’50 to Watch for 2023′ list, and as a Taste the Atlantic Young Chef Ambassador. 

She is on the board of advisors for Chef Network and a judge for Blas na hÉireann.

Sinead McLoughlin
O'Briain Beary Architects

Category: Construction, Engineering and Manufacturing / GI House Champion

Sinead studied architecture in TUD, has a Professional Diploma in Architectural Practice and gained RIAI conservation accreditation.

Sinead’s range of work has included housing, healthcare, schools, commercial, conservation and urban planning. She has worked for architectural practices in NYC, London and Dublin, as well as in the Professional Technical Unit of the Department of Education and Skills.

She is currently deputy Vice-President of the RIAI and sits on the Education Taskforce and the Board of Directors.

Dr. Aidan Kenny
TU Dublin

Category: Construction, Engineering and Manufacturing / GI House Champion

Dr Kenny is a Head of Apprenticeship in the School of Mechanical Engineering in TU Dublin. 

He commenced his academic career in DIT, Bolton St. in 1996. He also taught in Trinity College Dublin and is currently an external examiner for the school of education PHD candidates. 

In sabe, he works with colleagues in the apprenticeship skills area, convenor of the teaching and learning committee, organiser for the apprenticeship research studies and lead researcher for EU Project Green skills pathways-micro-credentials. 

John Bradly
Etex Ireland

Category: Construction, Engineering and Manufacturing / GI House Champion

 John is the Country Manager of Etex Ireland (formerly Tegral), which is a company comprising the four brands, Cedral, Equitone, Euronit and Viriform, which make up Ireland’s leading manufacturers of roofing and cladding materials in the construction sector. John has been in the company for over 28 years, and has vast experience in all areas of the business, from technical, commercial to supply chain and brings indepth knowledge of the value of innovation and strategy to ensure profitable growth of a business. He is a member of the Octabuild board, whose objective is to promote the benefits of high quality, Irish manufactured products for the building, construction and DIY sectors.

Lauren Kehoe
Viatel Technology Group

Category: Technology / E-Commerce

Lauren Kehoe is Head of Group Product Strategy with Viatel Technology Group. With an engineering background and extensive experience with Ericsson and Vodafone Ireland, Lauren empowers Viatel’s customers and partners.

She spearheads Viatel’s membership of CWiT (Connecting Women in Technology), advocating for gender diversity and inclusivity in the tech industry.

Richard Brennan

Category: Technology / E-Commerce

Senior Manager with 20 years’ experience building up and managing large teams of experienced professionals working across a wide range of disciplines including Product Management, Business Analysis and various Online Marketing specialties. A proven track record of strategising, architecting and delivering innovative large scale technology product offerings, comfortably marrying functional & business requirements with technological solutions.

Charlie Taylor
Business Post

Category: Technology / E-Commerce

Charlie is the Technology and Innovation Editor at the Business Post, where his duties include editing Connected, a tech-focused monthly magazine.

Rosemary Steen
Design & Crafts Council Ireland

Category: Home and Lifestyle / Guaranteed Irish Gift Champion

Rosemary plays a key role in delivering DCCI’s strategy of embedding design as a strategic enabler for the future development of Ireland’s competitiveness, economy and society. Supporting Irish businesses and communities, and using innovation to solve business and social issues, has been a constant theme throughout her career. She Champions Irish designers and craft makers globally but also encourages the growth of the sector in Ireland. Rosemary has a strong leadership track record and over 20 years experience of working with organisations such as Vodafone, Enterprise Energy Ireland and IBEC.

Susan McGowan
Ashen & Cloud

Category: Home and Lifestyle / Guaranteed Irish Gift Champion

Susan studied Interior Architecture at Griffith College Dublin. She was awarded Best Overall Design Project and won the national accolade for Interior Architect of the Year as awarded by the Institute of Designers in Ireland. In the 5 years since Susan founded the studio, she has become a recognisable voice within the Interior Design community in Ireland, UK and Northern Europe. She regularly features in the media, acting as guest Interior editor of RSVP Magazine, as well as contributing The Irish Times, The Sunday Business Post, The Irish Independent and The Sunday Tribune.

Karen Deignan
Sustainability Works

Category: Sustainability Champion

Karen is a Co-Founder of SustainabilityWorks, a consulting firm on a mission to accelerate Ireland’s transition to a sustainable future. She helps organisations develop and communicate sustainability and ESG strategies. Over her 20-year career, Karen has advised multinationals and SMEs from many different sectors across the UK, Ireland, USA and Europe. She loves making the complex world of sustainability simple, so that people feel empowered to take action. Prior to this, Karen worked in London for sustainability consultancies Salterbaxter, Corporate Culture, and the Carbon Trust.

Karen Coyle
Bord Bia

Category: Food Supplier or Producer / Beverage Supplier or Producer

As Bord Bia’s Head of Global Relationships, Karen leads a team of Specialists who manage Bord Bia’s engagement with global customers of Irish food and beverage products across the retail, food service and manufacturing channels; plus key customers in the Irish market. Previously, Karen spent 10 years in New York, responsible for the execution of Bord Bia’s North America strategy. Before joining Bord Bia, Karen’s brand marketing career spanned a range of market-leading Irish food and drink brands selling in the Irish and international markets.