Ireland's Ambassador to the U.S. Anne Anderson joined a who’s who of top Irish female leaders at a Dublin gathering last week to celebrate “Ireland’s Most Powerful Women: Top 25 Awards.”

The awards were presented by the Women’s Executive Network (WXN), which hosted a leadership summit and awards gala to celebrate the winners and allow attendees to learn from the experience and knowledge of the women on the list.

Anderson, who was named Ireland’s first female ambassador to the U.S in 2013, was named as a leader in WXN’s public sector category, which recognized “women who hold senior positions and are making an impact on the public sector in Ireland and/or Europe. Winners cannot currently be elected by the voting public and must be Irish but do not have to be based in Ireland.”

Other awardees in the category included Noirin O’Sullivan, commissioner of the Irish Garda (police); Louise Richardson, principal and vice chancellor at the University of St. Andrews and soon to be the first ever female vice chancellor at Oxford; and Enterprise Ireland Chief Executive Julie Sinnamon.

WXN inducted two honorees into its Hall of Fame – Cathriona Hallahan, the managing director of Microsoft Ireland, and Ann Keenan, head of Group Human Resources at DCC.

“The gender pay gap in Ireland is 14.4 percent and getting worse according to EU statistics. The stats also show that women with children tend to fare worse in the pay scale against male counterparts,” said Pamela Jeffery, founder of WXN.

“Women need to be facilitated in their career progression and confident in their own value in the system. This is why we identify, promote and celebrate successful and influential women in Ireland,” she added.

Ambassador Anne Anderson receives her award from broadcast journalist Roisin O’Hara.Maxwells