By Siobhán Cronin
A BRITISH woman, who was recently named Business Woman of the Year, is the daugther of a West Cork couple.
Jacqueline O’Donovan, managing director of O’Donovan Waste Disposal, was recently honoured with the prestigious Business Woman of the Year award at this year’s Women of the Year Luncheon and Awards in Birmingham.
Jacqueline was recognised, not only for her business success, but for her passion and drive to improve her industry and the inspiration she has provided to others. The judges’ decision was unanimous.
Jacqueline is the daughter of Kathleen (nee Sheehan), and the late Joe O’Donovan, both emigrants from Goleen.
Jacqui’s award celebrates the achievements of women by highlighting their successes in business and wider society, in a bid to promote role models and inspire women across the UK to reach their potential. Previous winners of the award include Baroness Karren Brady and Hilary Devey CBE.
The judges were impressed by Jacqueline’s management of O’Donovan since becoming MD at the age of 19, navigating the company through two recessions, while growing staff numbers. ‘Her unwavering determination to succeed is evident from her consistent investment in the health and safety of her staff, the company’s facilities and its fleet. Her influence is felt industry-wide, with her dedication to developing others through mentoring epitomising the Vitalise spirit of supporting and inspiring other women,’ they said.
Under Jacqueline’s dynamic leadership, O’Donovan Waste Disposal has become one of the South East’s leading waste management companies operating within London and the surrounding area. As md, Jacqueline has grown the company to a turnover of more than £19m, with 160 staff and a fleet of 85 HGVs.
The award marks the fourth time this year that Jacqueline has been recognised for her outstanding achievements, having taken home the Outstanding Woman in Construction at the Women in Construction Awards in March, Achiever of the Year at the Constructing Excellence Awards in July and Outstanding Commitment to Innovation Award from the British Irish Trading Alliance in September.
‘The heritage and growth of the family business is incredibly close to my heart and I am delighted to represent them in the acceptance of this award,’ said Jacqueline.
Judy Groves, awards chair, said that Jacqueline was an inspiration for women looking to make their mark in business, and to fulfil their potential.
‘The work Jacqueline has been involved in to improve safety standards and stimulate innovation in the waste disposal industry is fantastic – truly inspiring. It was a unanimous decision among the judges to award Jacqueline.’
Founded in 1959, the family-run O’Donovan Waste Disposal Ltd offers a wide range of services including skip hire, roll on/off bins, waste transfer stations, tipper and grab lorry services, recycled aggregates, road sweepers, wheelie bins and demolition services.