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Samantha Power

Obama staffer Samantha Power leads Ireland's most influential women list

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Samantha Power

The Irish Independent has published a list of 20 remarkable Irish women who are "making their presence felt."

1. Samantha Power
Before this 40-year-old Dublin native became one of Barack Obama's most trusted advisers on foreign policy, she had a career as a journalist and Harvard professor. She is being suggested as a successor to Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State.

2. Catherine Day
As secretary general of the European Commission, Day's job is to ensure that EU government runs smoothly. The 56-year-old from Mount Merrion in Dublin previously oversaw the accession of former Easter Bloc countries to the EU.

3. Orla Kiely
Kiely, 48, has created a design brand that is recognized world-wide. Fourteen years later her company, which is co-owned with husband Dermott Rowan, is estimated at close to €50m.

4. Susan Denham
This mother of four children recently took over as the first female head of the Supreme Court. The 65-year-old is regarded as a staunch liberal.

5. Sinead Duffy
This Monaghan mother has a Twitter following of 800,000 people. She tweets uplifting quotes on her Twitter page Great Minds Quotes (@greatestquotes).

6. Noirin O'Sullivan
This Dublin mother became the first female deputy commissioner of the Irish police. Security Editor Tom Brady says she is seen as a likely candidate to become the first female head of the force.

7. Frances Fitzgerald
This 61-year-old Dublin Mid WEst TD from Croom, Co Limerick was a chairwoman of the Council for the Status of Women in the 1980s. Today she serves as Fine Gael's Children's Minister.

8. Joan Burton
This 62-year-old Jane Austen fan throws herself whole-heartedly into her role as Social Protection Minister.

9. Fionnuala Kenny
The wife of Ireland's prime minister served as a press secretary before marrying Enda Kenny in 1992. She remains his political advisor.

10. Anne Heraty
This 49-year-old former Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year from Co Longford is Ireland's recruitment queen through her company CPL. With her husband Paul Carroll, she has built up a fortune estimated at more than €60m.

11. Marianne Gunn O'Connor
The country's top literary agent grabbed headlines with her million-dollar deal for Cecelia Ahern.

12. Moya  Doherty
With her husband John McColgan, this 53-year-old hit it big with their show Riverdance. The couple also hold a powerful influence in the media through their TV company, Tyrone Productions.

13. Miriam O' Callaghan
The fifty-year-old is RTE's most prominent current affairs broadcaster as anchor of Prime Time.

14. Clare Duigan
The managing director of RTE Radio has been tipped in the past to become the first female director-general of RTE.

15. Mary McAleese
The 60-year-old President of Ireland showed a recent 92 percent approval rating in a recent Irish Independent opinion poll.

16. Mary Robinson
The former UN High Commissioner of Human Rights now runs her own foundation, Climate Justice.

17. Ali Hewson
The wife of Bono has shown to be her own woman. The 50-year-old found EDUN, a fair trade fashion label and is a patron of Chernobyl Children's Project.

18. Anne Looney
This chief executive of the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment sets the agenda in schools, offering advice to successive ministers.

19. Cathy Kearney
Kearney has risen up the ladder to become the senior director of European operations for Apple.

20. Imelda May
This 37-year-old's charismatic singer is turning heads around the world.

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