Rising Star alumni, Mary Agbesanwa, celebrated in EMpower Ethnic Minority Role Model list

Mary Agbesanwa

Mary Agbesanwa, a management consultant at PwC and a Rising Star alumni, has been celebrated in INvolve’s EMpower Ethnic Minority List.

Agbesanwa came top of the EMpower 50 Ethnic Minority Future Leaders list, which highlights those tipped for future glory. Agbesanwa won a Rising Star Award in 2019 in the Professional Service category.

INvolve’s annual EMpower Ethnic Minority Role Model Lists, supported by Yahoo Finance, launch this year with a much-needed positive message, whilst urging businesses to take immediate action to break down barriers.

Following Boris Johnson’s comments on building a narrative of success for racial equality, Suki Sandhu OBE calls for a balanced approach from business, asking them to recognise that systematic racism does exist, even if they don’t see it, whilst ensuring that positive role models take the argument forward.

The lists celebrate businesspeople playing a central role in breaking down barriers at work for black people and other ethnic minorities; using their positions to keep diversity and inclusion at the top of the agenda.

Four British Women are in the Top Ten of this year’s global EMpower Ethnic Minority Executives Role Model List with the founder and CEO of the MOBO Organisation, Kanya King MBE, leading the charge. King is the top Brit and top woman in the list of the world’s leading 100 ethnic minority executives.

Alongside Kanya King on the 100 Ethnic Minority Executives List are; Bina Mehta, a partner in accounting firm KPMG; and Christine Liciaga, Head of Protection Journeys at HSBC, who take number five and six slots in the top ten; and Dr Paula Franklin, Chief Medical Officer at the BUPA Group, at number ten.

Speaking about current events and the annual list, Sandhu said, “We still need to recognise that systemic racism does exist and until we recognise that, we cannot move the argument forward.”

“At the same time, the more positive stories we can tell, the more we can demonstrate how discrimination and racism can be stamped out and level the playing field.”

“We are not here to blame or shame, but to bring about positive and lasting change in the business world.”

“Our annual role model lists celebrate positive role models that other ethnic minority employees can look up to.”

“They are more relevant now than ever.”

Speaking about her achievements, Agbesanwa said, “One thing I have loved to see is many businesses around the world not being afraid to state and proclaim that they are actively anti-racits, that they do not condone racist behaviour.”

“However, my hope is that behind closed doors, many of them are practising what they preach, by calling out inappropriate behaviour and supporting their black colleagues through difficult times.”


You can join Mary Agbesanwa for a WeAreVirtual webinar on 11 August 2020, where Mary will be looking at promotions and sponsorship in the workplace.

The session will focus on career development and we will be discussing articulating your worth in the workplace and the importance of finding a sponsor!

Alison Simpson
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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