Two Clare women scoop top business awards

Two Clare women scoop top business awards


A self-published children’s author, a child sleep consultant and a business that helps schools and businesses reduce plastic waste are among the winners of Network Ireland’s Businesswoman of the Year Awards 2021.  

The results were announced during the business organisation’s annual conference at Waterford’s Theatre Royal today. A 300-strong audience attended the gala event in person and online. Among the speakers were a number of  global experts in their fields – immunologist Professor Kate Fitzgerald, conductor and composer Eimear Noone; and coaching expert and World Rugby representative, Su Carty.

A total of 435 applicants put their names forward for this year’s awards through 14 regional branches of Network Ireland. A hectic season of selection events across the country in recent months resulted in the selection of 72 finalists to go forward to today’s event.

The Clare winners are:

Established Business – Ber Collins, Crystal Clear Springs Enterprises Ltd, Co Clare 

Employee Rising Star – Aisling Finn, Jaguar Land Rover, Co Clare  

National President of Network Ireland Aisling O’Neill paid tribute to Rebecca and the award winners: “Rebecca has been a source of inspiration and guidance to hundreds of members of Network Ireland, including myself over the years and she is without doubt an integral part of our organisation – she’s a truly worthy winner of the Trish Murphy Memorial Award”.

“I want to congratulate every applicant, finalist and winner of today’s awards, for shining a light on the fantastic work being done by women around Ireland every day, particularly over the past 20 months. I’m so proud of all our members who provide support and encouragement to each other every day, embodying the spirit of Network Ireland as the progressive, dynamic organisation we aim to be”.

AIB is the official partner of Network Ireland and Head of Business Banking, Catherine Moroney was a judge in the Power Within Champion category this year.

She said: “The power of Network Ireland shone through every stage of this year’s awards once again. Members have demonstrated an inspirational level of creativity, resilience and teamwork throughout the past 20 months and it’s always a privilege to witness the impact they make – particularly at the annual awards ceremony. I would like to congratulate all the applicants, finalists and winners as well as the organisers. Aisling and her team have done a great job of preparing a wonderful event ”

Enterprise Ireland was the official partner for the Awards and National Conference. Entrepreneurship Manager Sheelagh Daly highlighted the importance of organisations like Network Ireland. “The winners of this year’s awards are exceptional role models. We know that acknowledging and recognising the talent and expertise demonstrated daily by women business leaders contributes significantly to increasing women’s entrepreneurship. Network Ireland is a vital part of that process for this country and Enterprise Ireland is proud to support them in their activities”.

All proceeds from streaming ticket sales for today’s event will go to Network Ireland’s charity partner for 2021, Focus Ireland.

Erica Hargaden, Emma-Jane Leeson, National President of Network Ireland Aisling O’Neill, Ber Collins and Aisling Finn – Photo: Patrick Browne”


Ber Collins, Crystal Clear Springs Enterprises Ltd

The tagline “Say Goodbye to Bottled Water” says it all. Working with schools, colleges, SMEs and multinationals, Crystal Clear Springs Enterprises Ltd. helps its clients reduce waste from single-use plastic bottles through the installation of mains fed water dispensers.

Aisling Finn, Jaguar Land Rover

A social and driven person, Aisling believes in facing challenges head-on and living her best life every day. Previously an entrepreneur in the Ed Tech sector, she successfully pivoted her career during the pandemic, while also being a mum of four. Aisling is passionate about continuous learning and an Agile approach to life.