Gbenga Oyebode is the founder and Of Counsel at Aluko & Oyebode (Barristers & Solicitors), one of the largest integrated law firms in Nigeria. He is a philanthropist who is passionate about education and the arts and holds several key positions within the social sector. Gbenga is the Chairman of Teach for All and is a trustee of the Ford Foundation. He is a member of the Board of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art (NMAFA) and Cleveland Museum of Arts International Collectors Council.
Gbenga holds a Bachelor of Law Degree from the University of Ife and a Master of Law Degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the Nigerian Bar Association, the American Bar Association, and the International Bar Association (IBA). He is also a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) (FCIArb). He holds one of Nigeria’s highest honors, as a member of the Order of the Federal Republic and is a recipient of the Belgian Royal Honor of Knight of the Order of Leopold.
Nyimpini Mabunda is the CEO for Southern Africa at General Electric. He has 25+ years background leading major consumer goods, food franchise, and telecoms businesses across Africa and the United Kingdom. Prior to joining GE, he fulfilled roles at the Country/Divisional CEO level for two major multinational businesses – Vodafone/ Vodacom and Diageo.
His expertise in strategy, marketing, sales, digital transformation, data analytics, business turnaround, private equity, stakeholder management, and market development define him as a well-rounded leader who has an impressive track record of driving results and talent development.
Nyimpini is a recognized industry leader who sits on a few external boards as non-executive director and chairman. He is also a former senior advisor for Boston Consulting Group (BCG) where he assisted the partners to build the business in Technology, Media, and Telecom (TMT) and Consumer Good Practices across sub-Saharan Africa. Nyimpini who holds an MBA from the University of Cape Town is a regular speaker and panelist at industry events, some highlights include his role as a judge and panelist at the Stanford University’s Africa Business Forum start up initiative, emcee at the official Nelson Mandela Memorial in Uganda, and moderator at the ILLA Africa lawmakers conference.
More recently Nyimpini was appointed Chair of U.S. Chamber’s U.S.-South Africa Business Council, the premier Washington-based business organization dedicated to the economic relationship between the United States and South Africa. The Council represents America’s leading companies doing business with South Africa, and it is comprised of senior executives of U.S. companies from every sector investing in South Africa.
Phuthi Mahanyele-Dabengwa joined Naspers as South Africa CEO, in July 2019. Before joining Naspers, she was the cofounder and Executive Chairperson of Sigma Capital, an investment holding company formed in 2015. She held the position of CEO at Shanduka Group, an investment holding company from 2004 to 2015. Prior, she was the Head of the Project Finance South Africa business unit at the Development Bank of Southern Africa. Early in her career, Phuthi worked in New York at Fieldstone, an international firm specialising in the financing of infrastructure assets. She later transferred to the South African office, where she served as a Vice President. In 2020, Phuthi ranked number 42 in Fortune’s Most Powerful Women International list.
In May 2016 Phuthi became a member of the Rutgers University Hall of Distinguished Alumni. She has been awarded several accolades such as CNBC Africa’s All Africa Business Leaders “Woman of the Year Award” in 2019 and the Forbes Woman Africa “Businesswoman of the Year” Award in 2014. In 2013, she was awarded a “Distinguished Achievement” Award by The Douglass Society, and the Africa Investors recognised her as a “Leading Africa Woman in Business of the Year” in 2012.
In 2011, Rutgers University conferred on her the “Rutgers Vision of Excellence Award”. In 2009, she was awarded the “Most Influential Woman in Government and Business” by Financial Services. The Wall Street Journal counted her among the “Top 50 women in the world to watch”. Phuthi was also selected as a Global Young Leader in 2007 by the World Economic Forum. She was awarded “Top in Project Finance, 2003” by the Association of Black Securities & Investment Professionals. Phuthi completed a BA Economics from Rutgers University, USA in 1993, and an MBA from De Montfort University in the UK in 1996. She also completed the Kennedy School of Government Executive Education programme “Global Leadership and Public Policy for the 21st Century” at Harvard University in 2008.
She is the Vice Chairperson of the
Cyril Ramaphosa Foundation and is an independent director of Vodacom Group. She serves on the advisory board of Stellenbosch University’s business school. Phuthi also serves on the board of the United Nation’s Global Compact Network SA. She is also a council member of the BRICS Business Council in South Africa.
Vanessa Moungar is Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer at LVMH, where she supervises the global coordination of the Group’s actions on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
She previously served as Director for Gender, Women and Civil Society at the African Development Bank, where she led the Bank’s action on gender equality, women’s empowerment and civil society engagement. In particular, she led the development, resource mobilization and roll out of the Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) program, to unlock $5 billion in access to finance for women entrepreneurs across Africa’s 54 countries. As Senior Manager for Africa at the World Economic Forum between 2013 and 2017, she led large-scale publicprivate collaboration efforts across multiple industries to drive investment into the continent. There, she also led the Demographic Dividend agenda with a multi stakeholder group of global experts, with the aim of accelerating investments for women and youth. Between 2006 and 2013, she held various positions including Director of Sales and Marketing at Terrafina, an American company operating in the agri-business industry. As a student, she co-founded a consulting company, AV Consulting, to support young entrepreneurs in Africa and the Middle East through specific consulting missions.
A citizen of Chad and France, she sat on French President Emmanuel Macron’s Presidential Council for Africa between 2017 and 2022, was a member of the G7 Gender Equality Advisory Council in 2019 and is a visiting lecturer at Sciences Po Paris.Vanessa holds degrees from INSEEC Paris and Harvard University, and was a WEF Global Leadership Fellow (in partnership with Columbia University, Wharton School of Business, China Europe International Business School, London Business School, and INSEAD).
Swithin J. Munyantwali is an international development lawyer with close to thirty years’ experience leading law reform efforts in Africa, and globally. He is Vice Chairman and co founder of the International Law Institute African Centre for Legal Excellence, and the ILI South African Centre for Excellence, all affiliates of the International Law Institute, in Washington, DC.
Munyantwali is Senior Advisor to Appleton Luff, a boutique international law firm. Munyantwali has served as a party-appointed arbitrator under the auspices of the International Chamber of Commerce (power and telecoms disputes), and the World Bank International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (energy dispute) – with seats in Tanzania, and London, UK. The matters in these cases exceeded $1 billion.
Munyantwali has served as a Guest Professor at the Macau University of Science and Technology, as well as the City University of Hong Kong Law School. He has lectured at Case Western Reserve Law School, University of Pacific McGeorge, the World Affairs Council in Sacramento, California, and Peking University (School of Transnational Law) in Shenzhen. He is an adjunct lecturer at the Loyola Law School Masters in Law (LLM) Pro Law Program in Rome; he has spoken at the Maine and Kreisky Forums in Camden Maine, and Vienna respectively. Munyantwali has published broadly and been cited on the subject of legal and judicial reform.
Munyantwali has extensive banking experience as a director with major international banks; he is currently a Non-Executive Director of the Absa Group (JSE listed), serving on the Audit and Compliance, and Social and Ethics Committees. He previously served as Chairman of Barclays Bank, and Absa Bank in Uganda, where he served as the Chairman of Human Resources and Compensation, and the Board Audit Committees. Munyantwali serves on the Board of Directors of the International Law Institute in Washington, DC, and the African Philanthropy Forum.
Munyantwali has served on Special Advisory Boards including Interpol and UN Habitat. Munyantwali is a Judge (Vice-Chairman) on the Staff Appeals Tribunal at the East African Development Bank. He is a member of the Visiting Committee, at the Center for International Affairs, Case Western Reserve University. Munyantwali also serves on the Advisory Boards of the Emerging and Frontier Markets Association, and The New Markets Lab. He also serves on the Dean’s Cabinet For Global Legal Studies at Case Western Reserve University School of Law. He was recently elected to membership in the American Law Institute.
Munyantwali was educated in the United States and holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice from St. Joseph’s University, a Juris Doctor from Case Western Reserve University School of Law, and Masters in International and Comparative Law, from Georgetown University Law Center. He is licensed to practice (inactive) in Pennsylvania.
Munyantwali is a Member of the Cosmos Club (Washington, DC), and has been honored by International Bar Association (Innovation).
Munyantwali is a dual national of Uganda and the United Kingdom, and US Permanent Resident. Munyantwali is married to Lyvia Kakonge, a Canadian Barrister and Solicitor; they have 3 children – a son, Uwe (22), and twin girls, Teti and Nkunzi (11). They currently live in Johannesburg.
Pioneer Board Chair
Tsitsi Masiyiwa is an African philanthropist and social entrepreneur. She is the Executive Chair and Co-Founder of Delta Philanthropies and Higherlife Foundation, whose primary goal is to invest in human capital development to build thriving individuals, communities, and sustainable livelihoods. As a result of her work and experience establishing and growing the Higherlife Foundation over the last twenty-five years, Tsitsi serves on various social impact boards and has become an advisor and thought partner to universities, national leaders, and social entrepreneurs on issues of education, health, leadership, development, gender, and youth empowerment.