There was a palpable energy in the room when we hosted the 2023 Sport for Business Women in Sport Conference this morning.

Supported by Lidl, the event attracted over 100 to be inspired by a lineup of top-class speakers and to enjoy some of the finest recent content promoting Women in Sport on the big screen at the Irish Film Institute.

We started with a look back over some of the moments that have driven the push towards a more equal future over the ten years since our first conference in this space.



We opened the show with Nora Stapleton taking us through the logic and the ambition of the updated Sport Ireland Women in Sport Policy, touching on coaching, visibility, participation and leadership. The latest figures are showing that the key metrics of the gender gap and leadership balance are moving well in the right direction and we will have more on them in the coming days and weeks.

Kelli O’Keeffe and Annette Ní Dhathlaoi reflected on the ten years since the first conference, touching on how sponsorship has changed and how the media has come part of the way at least towards giving genuine equality.

We reflected on sessions with Clare Balding and Emma Hayes across the years.

Ann Marie Hughes from the IRFU spoke about the impact of leadership programmes on nurturing and enabling talent all the way from grassroots clubs to the World Rugby Council.

After a short break to network and spark new partnerships, we returned with Anne McCormack of Hockey Ireland, Michelle Carpenter at Rowing Ireland, and Suzanne Eade of Horse Racing Ireland in our CEO Forum.

Lots of honest insight into the opportunities and challenges of leadership and how to overcome them.

The morning finished with the trailblazing Liz Howard, from Sunday Game analyst in the 1980s to County Board PRO with Tipperary GAA and President of the Camogie Association.



We will have more images from the morning updating later and will first two in a series of podcast recordings of the conversations next week.

We also peppered the morning with video content that we will also share tomorrow but which included this piece from Columbia that is a class example of how partnership between sport and business can make a material difference.