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Avance Media announces 2023 Most Influential African Women list

Avance Media, a pan-African Public Relations and Rating firm, has announced the release of its fifth annual edition of the 100 Most Influential African Women list for 2023 honouring Africa’s foremost women leaders from 31 countries.

Chosen for their exceptional contributions to various sectors on the continent, the 2023 publication features 20 business leaders, 24 diplomats, 6 climate change leaders, 21 leaders in CSO & Philanthropy and other notable categories such as governance, media, sports and entertainment.

Prince Akpah, the Founder of Avance Media, emphasized that the compilation aims to spotlight women spearheading impactful initiatives across Africa, serving as inspiring role models for the next generation. 

He underscored their selection as a tribute to their extraordinary accomplishments, positioning them as exemplary trailblazers among Africa's female leaders.

Criteria for selection included: Excellence in Leadership & Performance, Personal accomplishments, Commitment to sharing knowledge, Breaking the Status Quo and being an accomplished African Woman.

The 2023 list features female presidents and vice presidents, H.E Sahle-Work Zewde (Ethiopia), H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan (Tanzania), H.E Mariam Chabi Talata (Benin), H.E Mutale Nalumango (Zambia) and H.E. Rebecca Nyandeng De Mabior (South Sudan)

The comprehensive profiles of the 2023 100 Most Influential African Women can be accessed at 100women.avancemedia.org.

Below is the list of Avance Media’s 2023 100 Most Influential African Women arranged in alphabetical order

1. Abir Ibrahim || Associate Director of Africa, World Economic Forum

2. Ahunna Eziakonwa || Regional Director for Africa, UNDP

3. Alice Wairimu Nderitu || Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, UN

4. Amani Abou-Zeid (H.E.) ||  Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, AU

5. Amina J Mohammed (H.E.) || Deputy Secretary-General , United Nations

6. Angela Kyerematen-Jimoh || Strategic Partnership Lead for Africa, Microsoft

7. Angélique Kidjo || Musician    

8. Antoinette Sayeh || Deputy Managing Director, IMF

9. Arunma Oteh || Chairperson, Royal African Society

10. Aya Chebbi || Founder, Nala Feminist Collective

11. Beatrice Agyeman Abbey || Group CEO, Media General

12. Bimbo Ademoye || Actress    

13. Bintou Keita  || Special Representative of the Secretary-General in the DRC, UN

14. Caroline Wanga || CEO, Essence

15. Charlene Ruto || Founder, Smachs Foundation

16. Chido Cleopatra Mpemba || Youth Envoy, African Union

17. Chileshe Kapwepwe || General Secretary, COMESA

18. Clementine Nkweta-Salami || Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, UN

19. Coumba Sow || Representative and Country Director in Rwanda & Djinouti, FAO

20. Dagmawit Girmay Berhane || Member, International Olympic Committee 

21. Damilola Ogunbiyi || Co-Chair, UN-Energy

22. Danai Nhando    || Country Director, Change.org South Africa

23. Déborah Mutund || TV Host, CANAL+ Group

24. Degan Ali || Executive Director, Adeso

25. Diariétou Gaye   || Vice President People and Culture, World Bank

26. Diene Keita || Deputy Executive Director, United Nations Population Fund

27. Elizabeth Maruma Mrema (H.E) || Deputy Executive Director, UNEP

28. Elizabeth Wathuti || Founder, Green Generation Initiative

29. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (H.E.) || Founder, EJS Center

30. Fatim Cissé || CEO, IHS Towers CI

31. Fatima Kyari Mohammed (H.E) || Permanent Observer to the United Nations, AU

32. Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura || Secretary General, FIFA

33. Folasade Alli (Dr.) || Chief Medical Director, Lagos Executive Cardiovascular Centre

34. Françoise Moudouthe || CEO, African Women's Development Fund

35. Françoise Remarck || Minister of Culture, Ivory Coast

36. Graça Machel || Founder, Graça Machel Trust

37. Hanan Morsy || Chief Economist, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

38. Hanna Serwaa Tetteh (H.E.) || Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa, United Nations

39. Hilda Bassey || Chef, Myfood By Hilda Baci

40. Ibukun Awosika (Dr.)    || CEO, The Chair Centre Group

41. Ineza Umuhoza Grace    || CEO, The Green Protector

42. Irene Koki Mutungi || Captain, Kenya Airways

43. Jacqueline Asiimwe || CEO, CivSource Africa

44. Jessica Dewhurst || CEO, Justice Desk Africa

45. Libianca || Musician    

46. Leila Bouamatou (Dr.) || Managing Director, Générale de Banque de Mauritanie

47. Louise Mushikiwabo (H.E.) || SG, Organisation internationale de la Francophonie

48. Lydia Nsekera || Member, International Olympic Committee 

49. Mariam Chabi Talata (H.E) || Vice President, Republic of Benin

50. Martha Ama A. Pobee (H.E.) || Assistant Secretary-General for Africa, UN

51. Martha Koome || Chief Justice, Kenya

52. Matshidiso Moeti (Dr.) || Regional Director, World Health Organisation Africa

53. Mavis Owusu-Gyamfi    || Executive Vice President, African Center for Economic Transformation

54. Mimi Kalinda || CEO, Africa Communications Media Group

55. Monique Nsanzabaganwa (H.E. Dr.) || Deputy Chairperson, African Union

56. Mukwandi Chibesakunda || CEO, Zambia National Commercial Bank

57. Mutale Nalumango (H.E.) || Vice President, Zambia

58. Nangula Nelulu Uaandja || CEO, Namibia Investment Promotion and Development Board

59. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala || Director General, World Trade Organisation

60. Noluthando Gosa || CEO, Akhona Group

61. Nonkululeko Nyembezi-Heita || Chairperson, Standard Bank Group 

62. Nozipho Tshabalala || CEO, The Conversation Strategists

63. Ojoma Ochai || Managing Director, Co-Creation Hub

64. Olori Atuwatse III (HRH) || Queen Consort, Warri Kingdom 

65. Oulie Keita (Dr.) || Executive Director, Greenpeace Africa

66. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka (Dr.) || Board Chair, Women Deliver

67. Precious Moloi-Motsepe (Dr.) || CEO, Motsepe Foundation

68. Proscovia Nabbanja || CEO, Uganda National Oil Company

69. Prudence Ngwenya || Director of Women, Gender and Youth, African Union

70. Racey Muchilwa || PRESIDENT & HEAD, Novartis Sub-Saharan Africa

71. Rasha Kelej (Senator Dr.) || CEO, Merck Foundation

72. Rebecca Nyandeng De Mabior (H.E.) || Vice President, South Sudan

73. Roselinda Tuya || Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Forestry, 

74. Ruth Kadiri || Actress    

75. Ruvheneko Parirenyatwa || TV & Radio Host    

76. Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila (Rt. Hon) || Prime Minister, Namibia

77. Sahle-Work Zewde (H.E) || President    , Ethiopia


78. Salima Mukansanga || Referee, FIFA

79. Samia Suluhu Hassan (H.E) || President, Tanzania

80. Samira Bawumia (H.E.) || Second Lady & Founder, AFRIWOCC

81. Samukeliso Dube (Dr.) || Executive Director, FP2030

82. Sanda Ojiambo || Assistant Secretary-General, United Nations Global Compact

83. Sara Menker || CEO, Gro Intelligence

84. Simi Nwogugu || CEO, Junior Achievement Africa

85. Solange Amichia || CEO, CEPICI

86. Somachi Chris-Asoluka || CEO, The Tony Elumelu Foundation

87. Stigmata Tenga (Dr.) || Executive Director, Africa Philanthropy Network

88. Thembi Seete || Actress    

89. Theo Sowa || Co-Chair, The Equality Fund

90. Theresa Ayoade || CEO, Charterhouse

91. Tulia Ackson (Hon Dr.) || Speaker, National Assembly of Tanzania

92. Tusaiwe Munkhondya  || Founder, YANA

93. Valentine Rugwabiza || Special Representative of the SG for the CAR, United Nations

94. Vanessa Nakate || Climate Activist & Goodwill Ambassador, Unicef

95. Vera Songwe (Dr.) || Founder & Chairwoman, Liquidity and Sustainability Facility

96. Victoria Kwakwa || Regional Vice President for Eastern and Southern Africa, World Bank

97. Wendy Lucas-Bull || Chairperson, Shoprite Holdings Ltd

98. Winnie Byanyima || Executive Director, UNAIDS

99. Zainab Hawa Bangura (H.E.) || Director General, United Nations Office at Nairobi

100. Zouera Youssoufou || CEO, Aliko Dangote Foundation



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