Finalist for the 2021 Black British Business Awards announced

BBBAwards Finalists 2021

The finalists of the 2021 Black British Business Awards (BBBAwards) have been announced.

Shortlisted are 39 remarkable Black professionals from across the United Kingdom who have not only been selected for their outstanding professional achievements, but for the personal work they are doing to defy stereotypes and reshape the business world around them.

Winners for each category, as well as the Black British Business Person of the Year, will be revealed at the Black British Business Awards Virtual Ceremony taking place on 7 October 2021. 

The Black British Business Awards (BBBAwards) are the only premium awards programme of its kind in the UK. Established in 2014, it has been endorsed by three Prime Ministers, the Mayor of London and global business leaders.

The BBBAwards have also revealed that the theme of the 2021 Virtual Ceremony is ‘Amplify’. After a turbulent eighteen months of the Covid-19 pandemic; it’s disproportionate impact on Black communities; the revival of the Black Lives Matter movement and the recent racist incidents that surfaced after the Euros football final, it is vital that we stand together to celebrate the economic and cultural contributions Black people make to the UK economy. The BBBAwards will ‘Amplify Black voices, careers and stories from a range of industries, highlighting their diverse and dynamic work. 

Sophie Chandauka, Executive Founder and Chair of the Black British Business AwardsSpeaking about the awards, Sophie Chandauka, Executive Founder and Chair of the Black British Business Awards said, “After an extraordinarily challenging year, I am thrilled that for the eighth year running we are highlighting the resilience and abundance of brilliant, Black talent in Britain.”

“Our finalists have delivered tremendous commercial value across sectors in volatile markets where entrepreneurs, in particular, have been decimated.”

“They have been strategic advisors to their companies and boards as global corporations are challenged by investors to address systemic racism.”

“Despite the pandemic and social unrest, they are fiercely competitive and remarkably ambitious, creative and commercially savvy, leveraging technology as their differentiator.”

“They are global in their outlook and ambition and represent the very best of being British in a post-pandemic, post-Brexit Europe.”

The 2021 BBBAwards will distinguish exceptional business talent into six industry categories, which celebrate both Rising Stars and Senior Leaders.

The finalists for this year’s awards are as follows:

Arts & Media Rising Star

  • Ahava-Shaffra Gray-Read, Senior Reputation Manager at KFC UK, and Ireland
  • Chanelle Harrigan, Data Strategy Associate Director at Essence
  • Hannah Chukwu, Assistant Editor at Penguin Random House

Arts & Media Senior Leader of the Year  

  • Liara Barussi, Artistic Director/Founder at Jukebox Collective
  • Miya Knights, Global Content Strategist at Poq Commerce
  • Taponeswa Mavunga, Director of Africa at Sony Music UK

Consumer & Luxury Rising Star  

  • Samantha Newell and Alesha Bailey, Co-Founders at YARD + PARISH
  • Simone Sargeant, Commercial Director, EMEA at McCormick
  • Vese Aghoghovbia, Founder & Creator-in – Chief at Philly & Friends

Consumer & Luxury Senior Leader of the Year  

  • Alexandria Dauley, Creative Director at Dauley Designs
  • Salome Ahenkora, CEO at Chigwell Tours & Visits and Concept Consulting RMT
  • Silika Shellie, Head of Future Brands at Sainsbury’s

Entrepreneur Rising Star  

  • Alessandra Madubunyi, Director at COCONAUTICAL, WE are COCO
  • Dr Ewoma Ukeleghe, Doctor & Company Director at SKNDOCTOR C/O The Skin GP LTD
  • Dr Opemiposi Adegbulu & Taiwo Adegbulu, Co-Founder’s at Omolola Jewellery

Entrepreneur Senior Leader of the Year  

  • Claudine Reid MBE, Director at PJs Community Services Ltd
  • Edgar Chibaka & Jamal Tahlil, Co-Founder’s and Directors at First Response Group Ltd
  • Michael Kouri-Bent, Managing Director at Metropolitan Care Solutions

Financial Services Rising Star

  • Ash-Lee James, Managing Director at Weystone Financial
  • Janet Onyia, Project & Programme Manager at Accenture
  • Jordon Clarke, IBD Global Ops Project Lead and Blockchain Lead at Morgan Stanley 

Financial Services Senior Leader of the Year

  • Alwin E. Swales, Partner at PwC
  • Kyle Williams, Managing Director & Senior Counsel – Legal Department at Goldman Sachs International
  • Lara Oyesanya, General Counsel and Chief Risk Officer at Contis

Professional Services Rising Star

  • Jason Raeburn, Partner at Baker McKenzie
  • Josh Olomolaiye, Senior Manager, Banking Audit at KPMG LLP 
  • Samuel Lawrence, Director at CBRE

Professional Services Senior Leader of the Year

  • Akima Paul-Lambert, Litigation Partner at Hogan Lovells
  • David Frederick, Managing Director and Founder at Marcus Bishop Associates
  • Lindsey N. Stewart, Deputy Chair, Audit Evolution Board and Senior Investor Engagement Manager at KPMG LLP 

STEM Rising Star

  • Esther Odekunle, Senior Scientist Antibody Engineer at GlaxoSmithKline
  • Nina Nduwayo, Data Scientist at Ravelin Technology
  • Nnamdi Emelifeonwu, CEO at Define

STEM Senior Leader of the Year 

  • Gareth Dauley, Executive Vice President at Pacific Green Technologies
  • Gnilane Gueye-Turpin, Executive Director at J.P. Morgan
  • Uzoamaka Nwamarah, Adviser, Climate Change at The Commonwealth Secretariat, UK

Inspirational Woman: Debbie Tembo | Managing Director, The Black British Business Awards

Debbie Tembo joined the BBBAwards in January 2021. Since 2016, she has worked with FTSE100 clients, Top 100 Law Firms and one of the Big Four as Client Relationship Director & Board Member at Obelisk Legal Support Solutions.

During her tenure, she was a key driving force behind the successful running and operations of the business, in particular the client and sales function, with critical input into long-term strategic development and goals. Debbie has always had a very strong interest in diversity and inclusion (D&I) having extensively advised FTSE100 and professional services firms about the strategic importance of D&I and its position as a critical enabler of long-term sustainability, from a people and profit perspective. Additionally, she provides key involvement in the procurement and RFP processes of large institutions, with D&I as a critical component. Consistently recognised as a stand-out performer, she was the youngest member of the first international innovations approach in a global HQ and first female manager appointed to a previously male-dominated Africa and Middle East team. Debbie is the Managing Director of the BBBAwards, a Non-Executive Director at Obelisk legal Support Solutions and a member of the 30% Club Race Equity Group Steering Committee.

Debbie Tembo featured
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About the author

Alison is the Digital Content Editor for WeAreTheCity. She has a BA Honours degree in Journalism and History from the University of Portsmouth. She has previously worked in the marketing sector and in a copywriting role. Alison’s other passions and hobbies include writing, blogging and travelling.

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