Northern Ireland's top business women short-listed for prestigious awards
AND the winners are . . . . .
Well, the envelopes in this year's seventh annual Women in Business Awards won't actually be opened until the gala finals night at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Thursday November 9.
But the judges have met and drawn up a short-list of around 40 individuals and companies in the running for the much sought-after gongs, following another record-breaking entry.
"There was an incredibly high-calibre entry this year, and we believe we've compiled an absolutely fantastic short-list of finalists," said Women in Business chief executive Roseann Kelly.
She also chaired the judging panel, which comprised Evelyn Collins, chief executive of the NI Equality Commission; Gary McDonald, business editor of the Irish News; Ellvena Graham, president of Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce & Trade; Avril Robson, owner and director of Corick House Hotel & Spa; and Nicola McCleary, head of marketing at Danske Bank.
All those short-listed candidates are invited to an exclusive finalists' retreat at Corick House, where they will hear from inspirational speakers and network with other leading business women.
Early booking for the awards night is highly recommended (more details at www.womeninbusinessni.com).
The full list of finalists for this year's Women in Business Awards is:
:: Advancing diversity in the workplace (sponsored by First Trust Bank) - Allstate, Deloitte, Sensata Technologies.
:: Best corporate marketing campaign (sponsored by Kaizen Print) - Visit Belfast, Electric Ireland, Danske Bank
:: Best small business marketing campaign (sponsored by Kaizen Print) - Kerry Nevins of Kerrikids Limited (trading as Babocush), Victoria Scott (The Transfer Tutor), Loraa White (Budget Music Videos).
:: Best new start-up (sponsored by Go For It) - Laura Briggs (Jack Straws Ltd), Nuala Campbell (Titanic FX), Vivian McKinnon (Hydro-ease).
:: Best small business (sponsored by Danske Bank) - Nuala Campbell (Titanic Creative Management), Lisa Duffy & Aisling Bremner (Bright Young Things), Irene McAleese (See.Sense), Amanda McGall (Jump Jiggle and Jive).
:: Best customer service (sponsored by RSA Insurance) - Cathy Coomber (axial3D), Maria McDonagh (Adventures Day Nursery), Sara Torrens (Larchfield Estate).
:: Best exporter (sponsored by Aer Lingus) - Nuala Curran (Heavenly Tasty Organics), Celine Grant (Re-Gen Waste), Jacqui Walsh (Kitchenmaster-NI).
:: Award for excellence in IT (sponsored by Citi) - Susan Fitzsimmons (AuditComply Ltd), Leah White (The Secret Day Spa), Joanne Kearney (GlowMetrics).
:: Outstanding innovation (sponsored by The Innovation Factory) - Vikki Bustard (Plant & Play Wildlife Garden), Becca Hume (TapSOS Ltd), Katie McKinley (axial3D).
:: Outstanding management/leadership (sponsored by Fleet Financial) - Jaclyn Coulter (Belfast International Airport), Paula Kennedy Garcia (Convergys), Carmel McKinney OBE (Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service).
:: Best in professional services (sponsored by O’Reilly Stewart Solicitors) - Áine Glackin (White Ink Architects), Maria Glover (Napier & Sons), Maurica Mackle (Mackle Communications).
:: Young business woman of the year (sponsored by Ulster Bank) - Sheree Atcheson (Deloitte), Rachel Cully (BTY Cosmetics), Gillian Lowe (Beyond Skin), Katie Matthews (Excel In Education Tutoring School Ltd).