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Meet the Co-Founders  

of WomanUp

Clodagh Hughes

CEO and Co-Founder

woman up - Team

Clodagh is a Leadership Advisor and Senior Executive Coach retained by business leaders to enhance individual and team performance, through programmes and coaching assignments. 


She specialises in brain-based coaching, underpinned by neuroscientific principles. This provides a unique perspective on understanding both personal and professional performance which can then lead to changes in behaviours and team dynamics.

Her work in advising organisations on women in leadership as well as coaching talented women led to the creation of WomanUp and to Clodagh devising tailored programmes to tackle the known barriers to career advancement. She holds several coaching, facilitation and professional accreditations, including the Marshall Goldsmith coaching certification, which is proven globally to improve leadership effectiveness. Previously, Clodagh spent 18 years in senior roles in the financial services sector. 

Clodagh holds a Masters in Business and Marketing from UCD as well as several recognised leadership and executive coaching qualifications.  She is a board member of SOAR, the social enterprise which delivers early intervention, character development programmes for young people

Carol Bolger 


woman up - Team

Carol Bolger is a Chartered Director, a Certified Bank Director, a tutor on the Institute of Directors’ Chartered Director Programme and an Assessor for its Board Evaluation Service. 


She is the Chair of An Post and Chair of Utexam Solutions Ltd, a subsidiary of BNP Paribas.  She also chairs the Audit Committee of the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine. 

She has broad banking experience gained in corporate and business banking in Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank where she held senior roles including Chief Operating Officer and Director of Strategy and Planning.

A Fellow and a former Council Member of the Institute of Banking, Carol held the position of Vice President in 2005. 


She holds qualifications in finance, strategy and innovation.  She is an also an Executive Coach accredited by the European Mentoring and Coaching Council. 


Aileen O'Toole


woman up - Team

Aileen O’Toole is a Chartered Director and a Digital Strategist who combines board roles with strategic consulting assignments on digital transformation, eCommerce and social media.  


She is a member of the Governing Body of Technological University Dublin, Ireland’s largest third level and of the Audit and Risk Committee.  Also, she has served as a Director of a family-owned holding company whose best-known business is the retailer Carraig Donn.

Aileen was the Ireland’s first female Business Editor and is a Co-Founder of The Sunday Business Post newspaper. She was part of the team responsible for developing one of Ireland’s leading media brands and creating shareholder value through its sale to a PLC.  


She is a former Non-Executive Director of the Road Safety Authority, Business in the Community, Chambers Ireland and ASH Ireland, which championed the workplace smoking ban. She is a Fellow of the Marketing Institute of Ireland.

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