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International Women’s Day: Celebrating women in the oil and gas industry


Every March 8, the world celebrates International Women’s Day for women around the world making a difference in many walks of life. Interestingly, in the oil and gas sector which has over time been a male-dominated sector, women have proven that they can also participate and as well as perform exceptionally well.

Talking about women in oil and gas, we profile four women doing well in the oil and gas industry. They include Adaku Ufere Awoonor, CEO, Dax Consult, Amy Jadesimi, CEO Ladol, Olajumoke Ajayi, MD, Sahara Energy Upstream, Catherine Uju Ifejika, CEO, Brittania-U Limited.

Adaku Ufere Awoonor

Adaku Ufere Awoonor is the CEO, Dax Consult, a consulting firm with offices in Nigeria, Ghana and Liberia which provides legal and business advisory services to local and international companies. She graduated with an LL.B from the University of Lagos, a BL from the Nigerian Law School, an LLM in Oil and Gas from the University of Aberdeen and also has a certification in public Management from University of California, Davis.

Adaku is an international Energy professional with over decades’ global experience of legal and business advisory in the oil and gas, power and mining and extractive industries, leading multicultural and multilingual teams across Africa with a strong professional network. She is a strong support for young people empowerment. She won the Attorney of the year award at the African Legend Awards and was mentioned amongst the 40 under 40 leading lawyers in Nigeria.

She recently spoke at the just concluded 5th Annual Women in Energy Conference organized by Africa Energy Indaba at Sandton Convention Centre, South Africa where she spoke with other stakeholders on “how companies can work together to advance their corporation’s talent agenda and competitive advantage”.

She is driven by excellence and the need to make a difference.

Amy Jadesimi, CEO, LADOL

Physician, businesswoman, entrepreneur and corporate executive; Amy Jadesimi is the Chief Executive Officer Lagos Deep Offshore logistics Base, LADOL, an industrial free zone in Lagos. She is one of Nigeria’s leading oil and gas female practitioners.

She was named Archbishop Desmond Tutu Fellow in 2013 and in 2014 Youngest Power Women in Africa by Forbes. Her organization has also won several awards for their wonderful feats in the oil and gas industry.

She is very passionate in developing strategic infrastructure needed for African Countries to become leading global economies.

Olajumoke Cecilia Ajayi , MD Sahara Energy Usptream

Olajumoke Ajayi is the Chief Executive officer and Managing Director, Asharami Energy, a subsidiary of Sahara Energy Upstream Company. She holds a Master of Science degree in Applied Geophysics obtained from the University of Lagos; and a Bachelor of Technology in Applied Geophysics from the Federal University of Technology Akure.

Her journey in the oil and gas Industry started in Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited, where she was privileged to undergo tutelage under renowned and experienced professionals who were masters of their own fields and who spared nothing whilst providing guidance in her cultivation of resilience and excellence – a pre-requisite to achieving mastery in the Oil & Gas business – indeed in any life endeavor.

As managing director of Asharami Energy Ltd (the upstream company of Sahara Group), she is one of the foremost female Managing Directors in Nigerian upstream. She manages the day to day running of the company and is responsible for all the Company’s upstream assets both locally and internationally, spanning three countries.

Olajumoke is an active member of both the Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationist (NAPE) and American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG).

Catherine Uju Ifejika

Graduate from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, obtained a Diploma in Law and an LLB Hons, called to the Nigerian Bar in 1986, Catherine Uju Ifejika is the first woman to chair an Upstream E&P Company in Nigeria. She began her career in the petroleum industry when she joined Texaco’s legal Department as Junior Counsel in 1987 and rose swiftly to become Company secretary in 1997.

She joined Brittania-U Nigeria Limited in 2007 as Chair/CEO and has since steered the indigenous company to its current market leading position.

Formerly on the Board of Directors of the Federal Ministry of Arts and Culture (2001-2002), Catherine’s leadership of Brittania-U has brought a number significant ‘firsts’. The Ajapa Floating Production Storage Unit, 100% owned and operated by the company, produced its first oil from drilling in 17 months; a feat yet to be equaled by any other company of its kind in Nigeria.

She has set up six subsidiary companies in seven years, receiving numerous awards for good governance and management in Nigeria, the US, China, and Europe.

Source NBA Forbes Oil and Gas council
Via Brittania-U
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