The Powerhouse Picnic – Free Women in Business Event with Lucy Kennedy

By Steven Galvin - Last update

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Powerhouse Picnic – Women in Business invite businesswomen across the Country to attend their first summer BBQ event being held in the Woodford Dolmen Hotel, Kilkenny Road, Carlow on Wednesday, 29th June 2022,

The Powerhouse Picnic is a summer BBQ event designed to encourage professional female business connections in an informal setting. Open to businesses all over Ireland, the Picnic aims to encourage future business development, not just in Carlow, but nationally. Hosted by Lucy Kennedy, with ‘Ploughing Queen’ Anna May McHugh joined by a panel of 4 successful female entrepreneurs, business executives and professionals.

The Powerhouse Picnic – Free Women in Business Event with Lucy Kennedy

Melissa Doyle , Business Advisor with the Local Enterprise Office in Carlow County Council said “we hope that this event will encourage the building of meaningful business connections that will drive future business not just in County Carlow but nationally” , Melissa continued to say “Carlow is an ideal location for businesses to start , develop and grow given its location just off the motorway proves just how accessible County Carlow is to the National Marketplace”.

Attendees will have the chance to meet, ask questions, make connections and exchange ideas with successful Irish businesswomen on the evening. Among the panellists there to share learning and business insights includes Anna May Mc Hugh , Kim McKenzie Doyle, Liz Morrissey , Catriona Cullen & Sandra Nolan.

Kieran Comerford , Head of Economic Development & Enterprise said “We are delighted to be hosting this free event which is designed to create connections and inspire and to be working with Lucy Kennedy who will discuss with our powerhouse panel their stories in business”.

Please register  online at or call 059 9129783


• 5.45pm Registration Area Opens (All Clients are asked to arrive at 5.45pm Sharp)
• 6.00pm Networking, Refreshments & BBQ
• 7.00pm The Powerhouse Panel with Lucy Kennedy
• 8.00pm Closing Words by Melissa Doyle, Business Advisor, Local Enterprise Office, Carlow County Council


Lucy Kennedy, TV and radio presenter and number one bestselling children’s author of ‘The Friendship Fairies’ and ‘The Friendship Fairies Go To School’.


Anna May McHughThe Ploughing Queen; Anna May McHugh lives close to the village of Ballylynan, Co Laois and has lived in this area all her life. She was married to John McHugh (RIP), has one son, one daughter and 4 grandchildren. Anna May was educated in St Patrick’s National School, Ballylynan, St Brigids Secondary School in Athy, Co Kildare where she also completed a commercial course. Her journey through the ploughing started in 1951 when she took a job as secretary to the founder of the National Ploughing Association, she was appointed Secretary in 1956 when the NPA became a limited company and elected Managing Director in 1973. Anna May has been at the helm of the Ploughing Championships as it has evolved from a small ploughing match and agricultural trade exhibition to what is now widely recognised as the biggest agricultural event in Europe with 240,700 attendees last year, over 1,700 trade exhibitors and 350 ploughing competitors. Anna May is a Board Member of the World Ploughing Organisation, Chairperson of the Diocesan Finance Committee, and a Director and Chairman of KFM Radio, she served on the board of Teagasc for 5 years, Laois Enterprise Board for 15 years and she is actively involved in a number of community organisations. Some of the awards that Anna May has received include: Laois Person of the Year, Millennium Laois Person of the Year, Rehab People of the Year Award – outstanding contribution to society 1998, Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2011, Irish Tatler woman of the Year – Hall of Farm Category 2013, Irish Independent – Event Industry Award 2009, Lions Club – Melvin Jones Fellow 2013/14, FBD Women and Agriculture Awards – Lifetime Achievement Award, Veuve Cliquot Business woman of the Year Award, Irish Security Premier Award, Ireland’s Women Executives Award – WXN – Irish Times Trailblazers Award 2014 and honorary doctorate degrees from universities.

Kim McKenzie Doyle, internationally recognised product designer and Founder of The B!G Idea; an internationally recognised product designer and winner of multiple worldwide design awards. Former President and current Director of the Institute of Designers Ireland, she was involved in the inception of Design Skillnet and a signatory. She has been project evaluator for Enterprise Ireland, specialising in reviewing creative focused industry and academia collaborations. An honours degree from IT Carlow in Industrial Design provided the foundations for an expansive career through multidisciplinary roles.

Liz Morrissey of ELM Beauty and Morrissey’s Pharmacy Carlow, Managing Director of Morrissey’s Pharmacy, a second-generation Pharmacy business and Owner of ELM Beauty a 5* Beauty salon. Liz has run the family business for over a decade now and opened her second business in 2016. She has a background in Marketing and Banking which are areas that play a big part of her success as a businesswoman.

Catriona Cullen of Cullen Nurseries
After 10 years as a Quality Manager in the food industry, Caitriona stepped back from her career to help out in the family business and create a work life balance.
Instead, she found herself in the driving seat guiding their growing (pun intended) family run tree nursery through a global pandemic.
Cullen Nurseries are now an award-winning nursery focused on growing and supplying native trees and hedging plants to a nationwide customer base.

Sandra Nolan of
The owner of PRETTYMESS.IE. She started her retail career in Ireland over 30 years ago. From there she moved to America and join her husband in his very successful Wholesale/Retail Business where they supplied all over the USA and Canada. She did all the Biggest Trade Fairs NY, Las Vegas, Chicago, Montreal, even P Diddy or Sean John as he was known back then showed his merchandise alongside her. From a very early age, she realised that if you have passion for what you do it, it shows and customer responds to that. People buy people. Sandra and her husband would spend 8 months a year in the states and 4 in Turkey where they owned Hotels. Being in the Hotel Business was a great learning opportunity for her to hone her Customer Service Skills. But it was going from a Go-getter Businesswomen, Jet Set lifestyle, having everything you ever wanted, and being in a very controlling abusive marriage that left her a shell of a person to where after her daughter was born, she wanted to end it all. But she knew she could never leave my daughter and that’s where she slowly took control back and the steps to rebuild her life.
Sandra divorced, walked away from millions, and planned her escape from Turkey with her daughter to start all over again at 49. She worked on herself swimming up and down the pool every day repeating positive affirmations until they did not seem so foreign to her anymore and she did this when the negative learned thoughts arise. For the last 5 years she has battled in Turkish Courts against her ex-husband on Kidnapping Charges, which thankfully she has won all of them, but they keep coming. She has 3 passions in Life: her daughter, Fashion and empowering girls and women. is not just about selling clothing for her it is about helping all girls and women to feel pretty and beautiful again, helping them to start investing in themselves. She hopes that, will give her that opportunity to do it on a much bigger scale. At 49 she is starting all over again and hopes that it will be a spark in women who have suffered total devastation from Abuse to see that they too can rebuild, restart their lives again no matter what age you are.


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