This interview is so close to my heart because I finally got the chance to speak with one of the people who have made my 2015 a year to remember. Thanks to Prof Klaus Schwab’s undying support for the Global Shapers Community and Elsie’s constant push to increase the number of young people allowed to participate at World Economic Forum meetings, I was lucky to be selected as one of the 80 young Africans and Global shapers who got the opportunity to “rub shoulders” with continental and global leaders at the 25th Anniversary of the World Economic Forum on Africa, as we discussed Africa—then and now—we took a sneak peek into the future and considered what we have to do to get there from the present. At 22, it was my first time traveling out of Nigeria, my second time ever to fly in an airplane, and it’s an experience I’ll never forget.
Let me tell you a bit about Elsie… Born to Tanzanian parents, she has completed, between 1997-2006, a BSc (Hons) in International Business Administration, United States International University - Africa; MSc in Finance, University of Strathclyde, UK; and MA in Development Economics, Center for Development Economics, Williams College, USA. She has served in various capacities with the Ministry of Finance and central Bank of Tanzania.
From 2006-2011, she was Personal Assistant to Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, President of the United Republic of Tanzania, responsible for Economic Affairs. She joined the World Economic Forum in 2011 and in 2014 she became Senior Director and Head of Africa of the World Economic Forum. Her other accolades include, Archbishop Desmond Tutu Leadership Fellow (2008); Young Global Leader nominee, World Economic Forum (2011); Rising Talents nominee Program of the Women's Forum for the Economy and Society (2011).
Elsie and I discussed everything. From Africa to her journey so far, and even her bucket list.
(Image Credit: World Economic Forum/ Jakob Polacsek)
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