Day 2 – Meet The Keynote Speakers
Keynote Speakers Biography
Founder/CEO, Career Masterclass
Bukola is the Founder/CEO of Career Masterclass which is a leading online career development platform focused on enabling the career growth of ambitious professionals by teaching the practical skills that they can use to build and enjoy a successful career.
Bukola is also a Risk and Controls executive who has held senior roles at some of the world’s largest financial services organisations such as HSBC, JP Morgan, NatWest and Deloitte. In her last role, she was a Managing Director and Head of Framework, Design and Execution within the Barclays Chief Controls Office. In this role, Bukola was responsible for the enterprise wide design and execution of the Risk and Controls Assessment process, ensuring that Barclays operates a very robust controls environment.
To date, Career Masterclass has positively impacted the lives of 1000s of professionals, by providing access to career development content, Masterclasses, coaches and mentors on the dynamic Career Masterclass platform. Career Masterclass also hosts an annual career development conference called STRETCH Conference to inspire and provide career development opportunities for aspirational professionals with a focus on those from a black or ethnic minority background.
Bukola is passionate about the progression of women and BAME professionals in the workplace. At each organisation Bukola has worked at, she has been an active member of the Women’s network as well as the Multicultural or BAME networks. She actively mentors BAME professionals and dedicates many hours monthly to providing career advice and encouragement to them. She also actively sponsors the careers of a number of high potential BAME professionals and has created and provided promotion opportunities for them when that would not have otherwise been possible
She was recently listed in the 2018, 2019 and 2020 PowerList which celebrates the achievements of senior professionals from an African and Caribbean background. She was also listed in the 2017 Empower Financial Times List of the top 100 Ethnic Minorities in the United Kingdom and was named in the Financial Times HERoes list of the executives who have made a substantial difference to women’s careers.
Bukola was also the 2016 winner of the PRECIOUS Awards Outstanding woman in banking and finance and was listed in Brummells magazine as one of the 30 most inspirational women working in the city of London.
Global Head of Colleague Engagement at Barclays Bank
Hannah Awonuga is the Global Head of Colleague Engagement within the Group D&I function at Barclays Bank.
She was working as part of the Global Diversity, Equity and inclusion leadership team reporting directly to the Chief Diversity Officer partly responsible for designing and delivering the Global DEI Strategy covering approx.
90,000 employees across the UK, Europe, Middle East, Americas and APAC. Hannah is responsible for global DEI projects, campaigns and communications design and delivery.
Hannah is responsible for the global DEI colleague engagement strategy, which includes global strategic oversight of the Group's global Employee resource group strategy. The implementation and execution of DEI campaigns and initiatives and partnering with HR functions to deliver the global DEI strategy.
Through her experience as a DEI thought leader, she sits on the UK government socio-economic task force and manages the new membership with 'progress together.' Hannah has led senior executive DEI roundtables with organisations such as Scotland police, Close Brothers insurance and Accenture – REPL.
Hannah has been working in banking since she was 17yrs old, and for the past 12yrs has spent time leading remote teams in the retail bank, business and corporate bank before transitioning into Diversity,Equity and Inclusion.
Hannah Awonuga is the Founder of Rarity London inclusion and development services; Rarity was founded in 2017 to actively support diverse professional women to excel in their careers. As the company has evolved, Hannah Awonuga now actively uses her voice as a thought leader to speak on panels, events and workshops around Diversity, Equity & Inclusion topics..
Over the past three years, she has delivered female empowerment workshops, keynote addresses, holds senior executive safe space conversations and joined many panel discussions with industry leaders. Hannah confidently speaks about Diversity, equity and Inclusion, socio-economic inclusion, Race and Ethnicity and Gender Equality.
Hannah is a multi-award winning DEI thought leader and speaker; over the past two years, she won the 2012 WeAreTheCity rising star award, was named amongst the 2021/2022 most inspirational D&I (Diversity and Inclusion) professionals by D&I leaders and was listed in the Top 25 most influential DEI practitioners by HR Magazine.
Founder & DEI Director of The Diversity Partnership (TDP)
Abi Adamson, Founder & DEI Director of The Diversity Partnership (TDP). Quoted in the New York Times as one of the “Stars of Black LinkedIn”, Abi Adamson is also often described as the future of diversity and inclusion (D&I) thought leaders. As a consultant, Abi has a sterling record of delivering positive global diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) culture strategies and facilitating DEI sessions for some of the world’s best-known companies, including, Spotify, TotallyMoney, KFC and Wise. Abi focuses on being an advocate for equity in the workplace and helping people overcome the silver elephant in the room when it comes to having uncomfortable conversations about diversity, specifically around race, as well as other intersectional identities. Abi has recently been featured discussing D&I issues across multiple mainstream media including, The Metro, D&I Leaders, Training Journal, The Chartered Management Institute and HR Zone, to name but a few.
Global Head of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Harbour Energy
Mavis is the Global Head of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Harbour Energy, the largest London-listed independent oil & gas company.
Her career began over two decades ago with the UK Civil Service. She worked in various Economics leadership roles to support UK Macroeconomic policy at its highest level, supporting senior stakeholders in the Bank of England, Ministry of Defence, and Her Majesty’s Treasury (HMT). She subsequently progressed to Oil & Gas, working in various professional disciplines, including Supply Chain, Client Relations, and HR.
Mavis is a passionate advocate of Diversity and Inclusion and frequently writes on the subject. Mavis lives in Aberdeenshire with her family, and outside work is a keen hill walker and amateur sailor.
Group Chief People & Communications Officer at Virgin Money UK PLC
Syreeta Brown is currently Group Chief People & Communications Officer at Virgin Money UK PLC reporting directly to the CEO and is a member of the Executive Leadership Team.
She was appointed to the role November 2021. Prior to joining Virgin Money Syreeta was a Managing Director at the US Global bank, Citi, and led the HR function for the Global Functions and Operations and Technology business in Europe, Middle East and Africa region. In this role Syreeta was responsible for the People Strategy and HR practices regionally for 20,000 employees (Global Functions covers Risk, Finance, Legal, Compliance, HR, Internal Audit, Public Affairs, Government Affairs, Security Investigative Services, AML).
Syreeta joined Citi in November 2010 as EMEA Regional Head of Talent Acquisition, a role she held for three years before assuming the Global Head of Talent Acquisition (TA) Strategy role in 2013 responsible for Citi’s enterprise-wide TA operating infrastructure and strategy covering on average 60,000 hires annually. This remit covered TA recruitment processes and systems / technical infrastructure, global attraction and engagement strategies to help define Citi’s strategy for sourcing talent and developing the Citi Employee Value Proposition.
In this role Syreeta led the creation of Citigroup’s first ever Global Talent Acquisition function which managed over 2.5 million applications annually.
Prior to joining Citi Syreeta was a HR Director at British Telecom Group PLC having joined as a graduate in 1998. She worked across various businesses in her 12 years there in a number of roles across the HR generalist and Centre of Excellence space (Performance Management, Resourcing and Talent Management)
Syreeta holds a BA (hons) in English Literature from Goldsmiths College, University of London, Masters in Human Resources from University of Westminster and an Executive Masters in HR Leadership from Rutgers (joint program with Bocconi Business School, Milan).
Syreeta has been a Board Trustee for the Access All Areas Theatre – a theatre company for learning disabled artists based in Hackney (2016-2019) and sits on the ‘Panel of Influential Women’ run by the Advanced Boardroom Excellence Group led by Helen Pitcher OBE, based in London which is focused on the development of senior executives. Syreeta was recently recognised for 20 years of service to Human Resources by CIPD and was named Financial Services Leader of the year at 2018 Black British Business Awards. Syreeta actively advocates for and supports Parents who have children with Special Needs focusing on Autism.
Syreeta is a proud working parent and is currently writing her first book based on her experience as a parent of a child with Autism.
Founder & CEO – Diversity Marketplace
Gamiel is more than an engaging, passionate, seasoned Diversity & Inclusion expert. He was the proud recipient of the Global Diversity Leadership Award presented by the Global HRD Congress and the author of ‘Demystifying Diversity’ and Yemen Proud.
Gamiel’s first foray into the world of Diversity was in 2000 when was in publishing, collaborating with the then Commission for Racial Equality to promote the Amendments to the Race Relations act which require public bodies to take action on Race Equality. Now more than two decades later, Gamiel has built a award winning Global Diversity and Inclusion Consultancy working with companies that include: Publicis Group, BAE System, Siemens, Rolls Royce, Eon, Channel 4, Zalando, South Pole, BNP Paribas, the Welsh Assembly Government, Local Authorities, the NHS, Charities, Schools, Colleges and Universities and more…
Gamiel works with employers to design and implement Change Leadership/Positive Action initiatives to attract new talent from diverse backgrounds, support existing talent to reach their potential through leading themselves as well as role modelling inclusive behaviours for others to follow and ensure that the culture of the organisation is conductive to the needs of diverse talent through audits, benchmarks (GDEIB), research, training, coaching and leadership behaviours. Gamiel has been called a subject matter expert in the area of Inclusion and Diversity and talks at many conferences as the key note speaker. Gamiel also supports the development of new and existing heads/managers of DEI through a partnership with ‘d&I Leaders’ working with 245 participants.
Gamiel spent 15 years in business magazine publishing where he revitalised failing magazines. This is where he developed an interest in Diversity as a means attracting new audiences and giving fresh content to readers and advertisers. Gamiel was head hunted by Havas to head up their Diversity and Inclusion practice before moving to Barkers (now Penna) where he accumulated a wealth of knowledge and experience in the areas of diversity and inclusive leadership.
Gamiel is also a founding member of the MK Ethnic Business Community, a Trustee for The Parks Trust, Women Leaders UK and a member of the Employability Advisory Group for Bath University.
Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging ISS
As ISS’s Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging, Kat Parsons leads a company diversity strategy that harmonises gender balance, pride, abilities, generations, culture, race and ethnicity.
With experience in HSEQ, education and sustainability, Kat’s portfolio demonstrates a dedication to people, the planet and personal wellbeing. In 2020, Kat’s Menopause Awareness Project helped to change workplace discussion and understanding around a subject affecting everyone from women and their partners, to the trans community and even men undergoing treatment for prostate cancer.
Her efforts saw her receiving the ROSPA Initiative of the Year award, Highly Commended status at the SHP Trailblazer awards, a global award at the ISS Inspire Awards.
Founder of Kelvin Inspires Ltd and An Independent Certified Coach, Teacher, Trainer and Speaker with The John Maxwell Team
Kelvin Uchemefune is the founder of Kelvin Inspires and an independent certified Coach, Speaker & Trainer with the John Maxwell Team.
He works closely with leaders and those who understand the power of
commitment to enhance their leadership capabilities, to increase their influence, to improve their teams, and ultimately their productivity without compromising value.
As a John Maxwell Certified Coach, Teacher and Speaker, he also runs workshops, seminars, keynote speaking, and coaching, aiding personal and professional growth through study and practical application of Dr Maxwell’s proven leadership methods.
With over 10 years’ experience working in the corporate sector combined with Dr Maxwell’s over 40 years in the personal and leadership development industry, he has gained a wide experience needed to engage the individual in a higher level of consciousness to be able to grow and do more. He is the author of the book – Revive – Six steps to Rebooting your life.
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