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Spotlight - Angela Ochumba

"The program offered me an exclusive platform to engage my potential, enhance my leadership capabilities, build lifelong networks, and become an agent for change."

Who are you?

I am Angela Ochumba.

I am a finance lawyer by profession and in my free time a fine artist, master swimmer and certified lifeguard.

I am generally adventurous and my current goal in life is to live fully – so I try to be happy, actively seek to multi-skill, develop a growth mindset, take more risks, and learn from failure when it happens.

I am also trying to learn French.

I think the one thing I will be happy to look back and appreciate about my life is the fact that I really did outdo myself!


What do you do?

I am currently Senior Legal Counsel, Global and Commercial Banking, Africa and Middle East at Standard Chartered Bank.

In this capacity I support the bank’s corporate finance business and participates in advising on, structuring, and aiding executing of transactions across Africa. I also support the sustainable finance business.

I have been with the bank for about 7 years now.

Before joining the bank, I used to work at a law firm and was on a 2-year sabbatical during which I travelled the world and studied for my Master of Laws degrees at the National University of Singapore and at New York University.

What is your upcoming news?

This year I am hoping to acquire the next level of the PADI Scuba Diving Certification. Competitive swimming led me to train as a lifeguard. After my training as a lifeguard in 2019, I developed an interest in open water diving. I have a passion for water sports, and I am always seeking opportunities for adventure, to challenge myself and to learn something new in water.

Why did you apply to the Young Leaders program of the French African Foundation, and does it mean to you to be a Young Leader?

Being a Young Leader has been a transformative experience for me. It has opened my eyes to a whole new world of possibilities, including the fact that I can actually be a change-maker and challenge the narrative around what leadership means.

I applied to the Young Leaders program of the French African Foundation as part of my lifetime goal to seek and access opportunities to lead in an inclusive manner and make impactful change.

The program offered me an exclusive platform to engage my potential, enhance my leadership capabilities, build lifelong networks, and become an agent for change.

I also thought I could add actual value based on my professional and life experiences. For example, my expertise as a finance lawyer enabled me to appreciate the resilience of companies in a market environment impacted by the COVID 19 pandemic. Also, my skill as a competitive swimmer and trained lifeguard afforded me the opportunity to witness first-hand the contribution that sporting activity can have on poverty alleviation and socio-economic development. These are specific experiences and attributes which I thought would enable me not just directly contribute to but drive positive impact on strategic issues for the program thereby contributing to socio-economic development in both France and Africa.

On a personal level, do you have an important moment in your life to share with us?

I recently was afforded an opportunity to drive my own self development by being career-coached. You do not really realise the beneficial effects of coaching until you maximise your personal and professional potential and also develop a greater sense of self awareness and increased clarity on where you want to get to.

What is your dream for your country and the African continent? How do you intend to act to achieve it?

My vision is for there to exist greater cooperation between not just my country – but Africa and the rest of the world, build relationships that are less dependent on aid, champion policies aimed at building resilience and fast-tracking recovery for those that have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic while also affirming the positive contribution that Africa can make to and enhancing Africa’s capacity to participate actively in the global economy.

This obviously necessitates the need to develop leadership potential of the youth which will equip them to take on some of these challenges.

2022 has just started. If you had one word to share with the younger generations, what would it be?

To be brave enough not to be a follower – it will cause you to compromise in areas you otherwise would not.


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