27 Nov 2021

Longford female entrepreneurs take part in local Enterprise Day

Women in Business

Aine Farrell, Margaret McEntee, Jenevieve Butler, Pauline Rogers and Niamh Donlon pictured at the National Women's Enterprise Day event in Backstage Theatre, Longford last Thursday.

Female entrepreneurs from across Laois, Longford, Offaly and Westmeath took part in Ireland’s largest National Women’s Enterprise Day on Thursday, October 18, when they attended their local event at the Backstage Theatre, Longford.

Over 100 local entrepreneurs were in attendance to hear the thoughts of Event Ambassador - Louise Lovett, CEO, Longford Women’s Link, along with a line up of very successful business women from the four Counties.

ALSO READ: Leitrim, Longford and Westmeath Women in Business Networking Event

The Keynote Speaker was Ciara Donlon, CEO THEYA Healthcare, born in Dublin but with strong family roots in Longford.

Her grandparents Rose and Tommy had the very successful Donlon’s newsagents on Dublin Street and her two grandaunts had a very popular teashop on Ballymahon Street.

Alison Ritchie of MD Polar Ice, based in Laois and Dr Anne Cusack of Critical Healthcare based in Kilbeggan, discussed many of the challenges they faced developing such successful businesses that are now succeeding in the international market.

All operating in very different fields, they shared many of the same experiences along the way.
MC on the day was Sinead Hussey and Dr Ciara Kelly was on hand to give some tips and advice on maintaining your physical well being and maximising your potential.

The entrepreneurs were joined by Marcella Corcoran Kennedy TD who officially opened the event and Barbara Heslin, Director of Services with Longford County Council.

In 2017, the Local Enterprise Offices played a key role in supporting female entrepreneurs across the country to start, and grow, their business.

Over 18,500 female entrepreneurs took part in training, mentoring and networking programmes with their Local Enterprise Office in 2017.

The Local Enterprise Offices also supported over 280 female-run businesses with funding last year to help them start and grow their business.

Catherine Kane, Senior Enterprise Development Officer with the Local Enterprise Office Longford, said; “National Women’s Enterprise Day is a key milestone for Local Enterprise Offices around the country. Since it started twelve years ago, the popularity of NWED has grown and every year we have more female success stories in business to highlight.

“The events are as important as ever, as they connect female entrepreneurs and give them the opportunity to learn from each other and share business challenges and solutions.

“For any female entrepreneurs in business or starting one up, our advice is to come and talk to the team at the Local Enterprise Office and we will quickly put you on a path to the right enterprise supports. Just start conversation with your Local Enterprise office and we can guide you from there.”

Michael Nevin, Head of Enterprise, Local Enterprise Office Longford said; “It is fantastic to see the level of interest National Women’s Enterprise Day attracts each year.

"The event is not only a great opportunity to hear from inspirational women in business, and to showcase what they have achieved, but also provides important networking opportunities for women throughout the country.

“In the context of Brexit, I am very pleased to see this year’s theme, From Local to Global and I would like to highlight to businesses that their local LEO is on hand to support them in maximising market growth opportunities.”

Further details on the supports available to female entrepreneurs in Longford are available from or by contacting Local Enterprise Office Longford at 043-3343346 or by email to

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