Claire recognised at award ceremony


WOMEN in Business recognised outstanding business women from across Northern Ireland at the 8th Annual Women in Business Awards.

The prestigious gala awards celebrate the dedication, achievements and talent of female business women and this year the awards received an impressive number of submissions from a diverse cross-section of high calibre women and organisations.

Fourteen inspirational women and one organisation were acknowledged for their outstanding contribution to business in Northern Ireland with Claire Hunter from the Marine Hotel Ballycastle winning the award for Best Small Business.

The Marine Hotel in Ballycastle now has 34 bedrooms, banqueting facilities, bistro and Proud to Serve Costa coffee shop. It lay derelict for 4 years until Claire Hunter and Colum McLornan took the reins and reopened the property 5 years ago. They have spent the last 5 years adding and refurbishing bedrooms, renovating public areas, ballroom and kitchens whilst building the business to a successful three-star property on the Causeway Coastal Route.

Chief Executive of Women in Business Roseann Kelly commented, “We are thrilled to honour all our finalists and winners through this awards ceremony and I am delighted that their amazing achievements are being acknowledged. All the women who entered have proven themselves to be highly skilled in their field and demonstrated tremendous determination and passion for what they do.

“Women are often reluctant to put themselves forward for acknowledgement and are humble about their abilities and talents. This is why celebrating and highlighting the inspirational women at these awards is so important. It promotes positive recognition of women in our society and in turn, encourages others to strive to achieve their goals.”

Tamara McMillen, Executive Sales Director, Virgin Media Business continued, “There is no greater recognition than that which comes from colleagues and peers, and all the Woman In Business Awards 2018 winners should be incredibly proud of what they have achieved.”

As well as rewarding excellence, the evening also sought to inspire women to continue to challenge stereotypes and continue to strive for success. Finalists and guests were addressed by keynote speaker U.S. Consul General and former Department of State’s Director for Press Operations, Elizabeth Kennedy Trudeau.

Commenting on the level of accomplishment, U.S. Consul General Elizabeth Kennedy Trudeau said, “I am honoured to be attending the awards event tonight, along with so many dedicated, successful and inspirational women.”

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