Gender Diversity in Ireland’s Whiskey Industry

21st February 2024

Posted In: IWD2024

The diverse career journeys of women working in Ireland’s flourishing whiskey industry and the variety of opportunities open to women in the sector will be the focus of an event being hosted by Women in Irish Whiskey on International Women’s Day on Friday, 8th March in Roe & Co Distillery in Dublin’s Liberties. 

The networking event for women working across all functions of the industry — distillation, production, sales, marketing, logistics and mixology — will feature a keynote panel discussion on the topic of ‘Encouraging Career Development’.

The panel will comprise of influential women from the industry who will share their career experiences and perspectives, offering valuable insights into their roles and the future of the industry.

Women in Irish Whiskey was set up by industry professionals and lifelong friends Heather Clancy and Anne-Marie Kelly, both from Co Kildare, to support women and gender diversity within the Irish whiskey industry through networking opportunities, encouraging career development and driving change in the sector.

Women in Irish Whiskey’s new status as a not-for-profit representative organisation will be celebrated at the event, and its new website — — will also be officially unveiled. Among the features of the website is a membership sign-up section with access to a jobs board to encourage career progression.

Announcing the second Women in Irish Whiskey International Women’s Day networking event, Heather Clancy and Anne-Marie Kelly said: “We can’t wait to welcome the talented women and gender diverse people who we work alongside through the doors of Roe & Co Distillery on 8th March.

“We are thrilled that this year’s event is all about encouraging career development, which is one of our core values. Attendees will get the opportunity to meet and hear from trailblazing women in Irish whiskey, whose career stories will resonate with them, make them laugh, roll their eyes and be inspired to take the next step on their career journeys.

“We’ll have a professional photographer on site offering everyone there the chance to have a new, glossy complimentary headshot taken that will be perfect for their LinkedIn profile. We’ll also be encouraging people to sign up to the membership section of the new Women In Irish Whiskey website for career tips, news about future networking events and job opportunities.”

Also commenting, director of the Irish Whiskey Association, which is a sponsor of the Women in Irish Whiskey networking event, Eoin Ó Catháin said: “Irish whiskey was once a male-dominated industry, however as our premium product is enjoyed by a broader and more diverse consumer base, the talent across all levels of our industry has too diversified.

“The Irish Whiskey Association’s Sustainability Roadmap published in 2022 indicates that the gender split across the industry is now 63% male, 37% female. Our ambition is for increased gender parity in the years to come – to better reflect those who enjoy Irish whiskey today.

“We are very proud to support Women in Irish Whiskey, whose values we share in seeking to build on the positive growth in the industry. By encouraging inclusion, we can foster creativity, drive business success and build on our already vibrant and dynamic industry.”

Pictured: Attendees at Women in Irish Whiskey’s inaugural International Women’s Day (IWD) networking event last year (pictured). This year’s event will be hosted on IWD, 8th March in Roe & Co Distillery in Dublin’s Liberties.