New Faces New Voices Trust in Kenya (NFNV), a Graça Machel Trust women in finance network organization that advocates for the economic empowerment of women through access to finance, leadership and capacity building has elected 25-year banking veteran Caroline Armstrong-Ogwapit as the incoming chairperson of the NFNV Kenya Board of Trustees. NFNV Trustees also appointed International development consultant and market systems development expert Wangeci Gitata-Kiriga as Vice Chairperson, media professional, producer and women rights advocate Valentine Njoroge as Treasurer, and corporate governance specialist Muthoni Kamere as Secretary.
NFNV was founded in 2010 and launched in Kenya by South Africa’s former first lady Dame Graça Machel, DBE, an internationally-celebrated thought leader on the advancement of women and girls everywhere and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Advocate. NFNV Kenya has played an instrumental role in policy-based engagements including supporting diversity initiatives at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) and publishing research in conjunction with Kenya Institute of Management and Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA).
In 2020, NFNV Kenya partnered with NSE and Equileap to publish the Kenya Gender Equality Scorecard©. Recently NFNV Kenya partnered with Dutch based Women Win on a virtual Knowledge Exchange series on Women’s Health, Access to Markets, Governance, Finance, Climate Change and has also worked with FSD Kenya to support young women entrepreneurs to access capital.
“It has been an honour to serve as NFNV Kenya inaugural and founding chairperson for the last 10 years which has been impactful. During this period we have worked with both local, regional and global partners to increase women’s representation in leadership within the financial sector, contributed to the body of evidence through research to address the funding challenges faced by women entrepreneurs, worked with women networks to increase and improve their agency as well as collaborated with various financial institutions to develop suitable inclusive products for women” said Andia Chakava, NFNV Kenya Founding Chairperson and GMT Investment Director. Ms. Chakava is the chair of the investment advisory council of Canada’s Equality Fund and an advisory board member of Kenya’s women enterprise fund .
Mrs Chakava stepped down at the end of 2020 and during that period NFNV Kenya nominated Makena Mworia a career gender finance professional to act as interim chairperson whilst a substantive chair was being sought. Ms. Chakava and Ms. Mworia will continue to serve on the NFNV Kenya Board of Trustees.
“It has been a real honor serving in a role that promotes the importance of African women representation in the financial sector. I am excited with the new leadership who I know will take NFNV Kenya to new heights” said Makena Mworia, outgoing NFNV Kenya interim Chairperson and CDC Group Manager, Gender and Diversity Finance. Ms. Mworia also serves as the Chair of Standard and Mutual, a corporate advisory boutique firm and previously was the General Manager, Operations and Development at Echo Network Africa (formerly Kenya Women Holding).
New Faces New Voices Kenya welcomes the appointment of Caroline Armstrong-Ogwapit to strengthen ties both with the banking sector and the public sector, to chart a new strategy to elevate women economic empowerment and to promote women’s leadership.
In addition to serving on the NFNV Kenya Board of Trustees, Caroline Armstrong-Ogwapit also serves on the boards of National Housing Corporation, Kenya Airways (KQ), JamboJet and stock brokerage AIB Axys Africa. In addition, Caroline Armstrong-Ogwapit is an Advisory Board member of The Room, a newly-formed member network of the African Leadership Group. She will be supported by Wangeci Gitata-Kiriga who has over the last 10 years focused her energy on rural livelihoods and improvement through certified trade across Africa. A former representative on the Fair Trade Advocacy Organization board based in Brussels and a board representative of Common Cause Georgia. Wangeci is an Advisory Board member of Peperuka Foundation and serves as a mentor with Girls 4 Girls, a non-profit organization that was started by the Harvard graduates from Women in the Kennedy School of Government. Public Policy Program.
Other elected office bearers include:
NFNV Kenya Founding Trustee and feminist commentator, Valentine Njoroge is the executive producer and co-presenter of current affairs show The Loop on K24 (a national TV station in Kenya). A gifted storyteller and communicator, Valentine has worked in all forms of media throughout her 17 year career. Valentine is also a founding member of Graça Machel Trust’s Women in Media Network and is the founder and CEO of dadasphere Media, a media company that creates platforms for African women to share their stories.
NFNV Kenya Founding Trustee Muthoni Kamere is a Principal Consultant at Soari Associates, a professional services firm providing corporate governance, legal and regulatory compliance, risk management and company secretarial support and advisory services. She also serves as a Technical Team Member of the Kenya Capital Markets Securities Sector Working Group (National Taskforce on Risk Assessment for Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorism Financing) and as a non-executive director of a FinTech currency trading platform provider.
Other members of the Board of Trustees are:- Sustainable Finance and Responsible Investment in Africa policy expert Nuru Mugambi, FKIB; Kamuzu Banda, Chief Operations Officer and Team Leader at Tim-Sky Media Services Ltd.; Pooja Bhatt, Co-founder of QuantaInsure, an end-to-end digital insurance platform and Co-founder of QuantaRisk, an insurance advisory firm; and Dr. Njeri Gitau, Award- Winning Public Health specialist, Rockefeller fellow and Senior Director with the Office of the President, Kenya, Presidents’ Delivery Unit.