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O’Donovan Waste Disposal MD scoops top business award

Jacqueline O'Donovan

Jacqueline O’Donovan honoured as Vitalise Business Woman of the Year 2016

JACQUELINE O’Donovan, managing director of O’Donovan Waste Disposal, has been honoured with the prestigious Business Woman of the Year award at this year’s Women of the Year Luncheon and Awards in Birmingham. 

Jacqueline O’Donovan was recognized not only for her business success, but also for her passion and drive to improve the waste industry and the inspiration she has provided to others. The award programme is one of the longest established in the UK and the largest event of its kind to take place outside London. 


The 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 Waste Disposal since becoming managing director at the age of 19, navigating the company through two recessions whilst growing staff numbers. Her unwavering determination to succeed is evident from the company’s consistent investment in health and safety, the company’s facilities and vehicle fleet. 

Under her dynamic leadership, O’Donovan Waste Disposal have become one of the South East’s leading waste-management companies, with a turnover of more than £19 million, 160 employees and 85-strong HGV fleet. 

The business award marks the fourth time this year that Jacqueline has been recognized 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.

Jacqueline O’Donovan said: ‘It is an enormous honour to be awarded the Business Woman of the Year award and I am humbled by the recognition. 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.’

Judy Groves, Vitalise awards chair, added: ‘Jacqueline is 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 as Business Woman of the Year 2016.’

Jacqueline O'Donovan has also been appointed to The South East Centre for The Built Environment (SECBE) non-executive board, in recognition of her continued commitment to the construction industry. 

She joins Ian Lyon, director of Oxford Properties and Jonathan Rickard, head of land and planning at Radian, as one of three new appointees to the non-executive Board.

The new appointments will bring fresh ideas and strategic insights, which will directly influence the actions of the SECBE, as an industry-led catalyst for change, supporting business growth in London and the South East.

The SECBE engages and supports leaders in construction to improve performance and win more work, by supporting companies to adopt new processes for sustainability, building performance and digital construction.  


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