An innovation and solutions focused discussion answering the question: How might we partner and collaborate to build inclusive economies that center on African principles.
How might this approach lead to a more just, equitable and regenerative world?
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Benjamin MakaiLeague Global Fellow
Benjamin Makai is the current Senior Manager- Technology for Development (T4D) at Safaricom Ltd
where he leads a team of innovators responsible for leveraging on technology to create, develop,
adopt and integrate new concepts, products and practices for public good. These innovations
address social, cultural, economic and environmental needs. Formerly, he lead the social innovation
unit at, which works with like-minded organizations to form partnerships aimed at identifying issues
and finding solutions in areas such as health, agriculture, education, and disaster management. He is
responsible for building and maintaining winning partnerships with ecosystem industry stakeholders.
Mr. Makai has a B.Sc. in computer science from Egerton University, various developing leadership
capabilities training from Strathmore Business School, and was recently awarded a certificate of
completion for the Rethinking Financial Inclusion Program from Harvard Business School.
Jackie Cureton is co-founder and Principal Consultant at Bright Insights Global (B.I.G), a boutique
women-owned consultancy formed out of a passion to partner with purpose driven organizations to
optimize business performance through the prism of inclusion, innovation and impact. B.I.G services
include, talent and inclusion strategies, innovation initiatives, organizational effectiveness and
business leadership and executive training and coaching as well as special projects. She has a
background in Human Capital Management, Organizational Effectiveness and Business Operations.
Prior to Bright Insights Global she worked at Thomson Reuters, for 20+ years where she enjoyed an
extensive corporate career and held leadership roles in Human resources as well as Business
Operations. Before leaving she was the Global Heard of HR, Go to Market Transformation for the
Global Growth Organization where she focused on Sales Effectiveness and Enablement for the
emerging markets and prior to that she was the Directory of People Strategy and Planning reporting
to the Chief People Officer where she worked closely with the People Leadership team and members
of the Executive Committee to ensure the talent strategy and annual goals were aligned with overall
company strategy. She has deep expertise in talent and inclusion Strategy, organizational
effectiveness, business strategy as well as program and project management. She is passionate
about Diversity Equity and Inclusion and served as Global Co-Chair for the company’s Black
Ms. Cureton was born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya and started her working career at Barclays Bank
of Kenya before migrating to the US in the mid 90’s and speaks fluent Swahili. She is passionate
about Africa and maintains a strong network and connection to the continent. She believes that
Africa’s time is now and is passionate about being an enabler, partnering with forward thinking
progressive organizations in doing better business in Africa. She believes that culture, equity and
business are levers for profit and progress in business and in society.
Jackie is a board member of the Valhalla United Methodist Church serving on the Staff Parish
Committee. She also served on the national board of Generation Citizen an organization that works
to ensure that every student in the United States receives an effective action civics education, and
Twana Twitu a non-profit whose mission is to provide support and empowerment to Orphaned and
Vulnerable children in rural Kenya.
She lives in Westchester County, NY with her daughter, Tyra and holds an Executive MBA from
Njeri Mwagiru is a Senior Futurist at the Institute for Futures Research (IFR), Stellenbosch University.
She leads the African Futures portfolio, and is editor of the IFR monthly, quarterly and annual
subscription publications on African Business Futures. She is also co-founder of a research and
business development organisation SCEZONS that has facilitated long-term institutional partnership
building between United Nations (UN) bodies and universities in South Africa.
Njeri Mwagiru has a Masters in International Relations from the University of the Witswatersand and
holds a PhD in Business Administration from the University of Cape Town Graduate School of
Business. Her research and professional interests include leadership, organisational performance,
knowledge, gender and diversity, inclusivity and transformation.
Dr. Mwagiru has worked with a range of organisations in several capacities and contexts including
research; higher education teaching and skills building; executive management training; policy,
strategy and programme development; short course design, planning and delivery; project
coordination; evaluation of initiatives for valued business, public sector, and international partners.
Her professional work and research contributions focus on capabilities of individuals, organisations
and countries in Africa to realise sustainable growth and collectively beneficial development. Her
vocation is to support knowledge sharing and exchange, facilitate integrated strategic planning, and
enhance decision-making and performance to achieve desired futures.
Saidah Nash CarterLeague Global Fellow
Saidah Nash Carter is a digital business native with a passion for value creation and the use of
technology to create new opportunity for business and for humanity. She began her career with
Reuters NewMedia during a period of profound digital transformation and went on to build and
launch some of the first online news services for early internet sensations like Yahoo! and AOL.
She thrives pushing the boundaries of corporate thinking and business development through
emerging technology, co-creation, and a focus on sustainability. She has an eye for identifying
opportunities to stretch businesses to new frontiers while remaining connected the company’s core
DNA and value proposition. This strength led her to design one of the first customer co-creation
programs in Thomson Reuters resulting in a new way of approaching partnership and IP ownership
and creating a pathway for richer collaboration with both customer and partner ecosystems.
As SVP- Africa Innovation, she launched Thomson Reuters data science and innovation lab in Cape
Town, one of seven innovation Labs globally and the only one in an emerging market. She is
particularly proud of her team’s work delivering Thomson Reuters successful Africa Startup
Challenge, Africa’s first Intrapreneurship Conference, and her flagship initiative to bring financial
inclusion to Africa’s small scale farmers – Bankable Farmer.
Today she leads Bright Insights Global (BIG), a boutique consultancy and expert network committed
to helping companies do better business in Africa. BIG’s network expertise spans financial services,
media, private equity, law, talent management, digital product and business development. BIG was
formed out of a desire to design and accelerate forward thinking, purpose driven, globally
competitive organizations that will drive sustainable economic development across Africa.
She is also passionate about Africa’s Intrapraneur ecosystem and works to identify, connect and
empower these thought leaders inside large corporations who are working to leverage innovation,
inclusion and impact to make their companies more sustainable. She works in partnership with the
global League of Intrapreneurs (https://www.leagueofintrapreneurs.com/), as League Catalyst for
Most Recent Awards & Recognition: 2017 Inspiring 50 Women in Tech, United Nations 2018 Voices
of African Mothers Innovation Award, League of Intrapreneurs Global Fellow – 2019