Merseyside Women of the Year winners revealed

Organisers of the Merseyside Women of the Year Awards announce winners at a ceremony in Liverpool city centre in front of hundreds of guests. Tony McDonough reports

MWOTY 2024
Finalists of the Merseyside Women of the Year Awards 2024 at the Crowne Plaza. Picture by Ray Farley


Hundreds of guests attended the Merseyside Women of the Year (MWOTY) Awards at the Crowne Plaza Liverpool to see the winners revealed.

Donna Scully, director and joint owner of legal and insurance services firm Carpenters Group was named overall Woman of the Year 2024. She was also the winner of the Business Leader category.

Donna was one of 12 winners revealed at this year’s MWOTY awards, who were celebrated across a range of categories for supporting and improving the lives of people in Merseyside and beyond.

This is through business leadership, voluntary work, activism, charitable organisations tackling some of Merseyside’s most pressing challenges, and entrepreneurial and creative endeavours.

BBC journalist, broadcaster, community leader and founder of iWoman Academy, Ngunan Adamu, was awarded the 2024 Fellowship award.

Dublin-born Donna Scully has been based in Liverpool for more than 25 years. Carpenters Group has offices in Liverpool, Wirral, Leeds, West Sussex and Glasgow.

It provides legal services to insurance companies and brokers and handles personal injury claims. In its last annual accounts the business saw revenues of just under £50m.

Donna’s professional career as a lawyer, experienced public speaker and podcaster has seen her work closely with the Ministry of Justice in relation to motor claims and civil justice reform.


Donna Scully, MWOTY
Donna Scully, overall Merseyside Woman of the Year 2024. Picture by Ray Farley
Amanda Unsworth
Amanda Unsworth,  winner of the Entrepreneur Award. Picture by Ray Farley


She also runs a homeless breakfast club every Sunday which she personally attends and prepares food, is an ambassador for Fans Supporting Foodbanks, a Football for Change Champion and a mentor for the Girls Network and The Insurance Breakfast Club.

Her Woman of the Year award was presented by headline sponsors, Financial Planning Corporation at the ceremony which was attended by more than 400 people.

“Yesterday was my 27th anniversary of coming to Liverpool. As a scally from Dublin inner city, I really feel like an honorary Scouser now,” said Donna. “I’m really shocked, humbled and privileged. To be among the best women that Merseyside has to offer, I’m delighted.”

READ MORE: Mersey Maritime extends awards deadline

MWOTY founding director, Ellie Kerr, added: “Donna epitomises the spirit of MWOTY. She is an incredibly successful woman in business, whose vision, leadership and compassion has driven Carpenters Group’s success.”

MWOTY was hosted by comedian, singer, actress and long-standing event commère Pauline Daniels. Full list of winners:

Arts, Culture & Media Award, sponsored by Morecrofts

Winner: Jacqui McAssey, a designer and image maker, senior lecturer at Liverpool School of Art and Design, and founder of the fanzine GIRLFANS.

Runner-up: Kate Martinez, Sefton Park Palm House


Business Leader Award, sponsored by IoD Liverpool

Winner: Donna Scully, director and joint owner of Carpenters Group.

Runner-up: Serena Silcock-Prince, Silcock Leisure Group


Community Leader Award, sponsored by Neo Community and ADDvanced Solutions

Joint winners: Claire Morgans, chief executive of YKids and Jo Henney, chief executive of Nugent.


Entrepreneur Award, sponsored by Investec Wealth & Investment (UK)

Winner: Amanda Unsworth, managing director of Trinity Logistics.

Runner-up: Kiera Vogel, Senate Group


Inspirational Women Award, sponsored by the Community Foundation for Merseyside

Winner: Katie Gordon-Orr, chair of Fighting to be Heard, a charity campaigning for individuals with secondary breast cancer

Runner-up: Leanne Hobin, Merseyside Police & St Helens Bees Netball Club


Social Impact Award, sponsored by Rise Construction Framework

Winner: Lynne Akwei-Howe, founder and chief executive of Crea8ing Community, a youth employability service.

Runner-up: Tracey Roberts, The Jade L Roberts Project


Women of Courage Award, sponsored by Auteur Media

Winner: Jayne Hughes, chief executive of Amy and Friends, a charity supporting children suffering from DNA repair disorders in childhood, and their families/carers,

Runner-up: Adele Connah, Cancer survivor and creator of ‘healing baskets’


Women Making a Difference Award, sponsored by the Crowne Plaza Liverpool City Centre

Winner: Ema Quinn, choir manager for the Choir with No Name Liverpool, which involves people who are affected by homelessness or otherwise marginalised.

Runner-up: Paula Thompson, Spectrum Connect CIO


Women in Health and Wellbeing award, sponsored by itsabouttimeme / Lawmed

Winner: Abby Younis of Women Conquering Cancer.

Runner-up: Jen Deeney, Liverpool Women’s Neonatal Partnership


Women to Watch award, sponsored by MWOTY

Winner: Emily McChrystal, a young leader and changemaker empowering marginalised young people who was pivotal in the establishment and development of Comic Youth’s Marginal Publishing House, the first youth-led publisher of its kind in the UK.

Runner-Up: Merfat Musleh, Savera UK

The 2024 Fellowship award was presented to Ngunan Adamu, a BBC journalist, broadcaster, community leader and founder and chief executive of iWoman Media and iWoman Academy CIC,

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