Most Powerful Women CEOs in Kenya

  • Kenya CEOs Rita Kaveka, Rebecca Miano and Jane Karuko
    Kenya CEOs Rita Kaveka, Rebecca Miano and Jane Karuko
    File
  • Kenya is a dynamic and exciting place to be a woman in business right now. 

    From the raging debate over raging debate about the ⅔ gender rule which has sparked discussions about equal opportunities to the innovation and entrepreneurial spirit in the country.

    Many Kenyans can name at least 10 if not 20 men who are at the helm of some of the biggest businesses in the country, but their female counterparts are not as popular. 

    Isuzu East Africa MD, Rita Kavashe Mediacom MD, and KBL MD Jane Karuku during an interview with Jeff Koinange
    Isuzu East Africa MD, Rita Kavashe Mediacom MD, and KBL MD Jane Karuku during an interview with Jeff Koinange
    File

    These subtle women, who call the shots at their companies have notable achievements that speak volumes about their intelligence and influence. 

    Jane Karuku - KBL MD

    Karuku was appointed KBL MD in September 2013 and before her appointment, she was the president of Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). 

    She has also previously held a number of senior positions in various companies including deputy chief executive and secretary general at Telkom Kenya and managing director and Cadbury East and Central Africa.

    Karuku holds a degree in food science and technology from the University of Nairobi and an MBA in Marketing from the National University of California. She is currently the Chairperson of Kenya’s Vision 2030 Board.

    President Uhuru Kenyatta appointed her as the Kenya Covid-19 Fund Board chairperson

    Rita Kaveke - ISUZU CEO

    Kavashe holds a  degree in education from Moi University and an MBA from the University of Nairobi.

    In 2017, she was awarded the Moran of the Order of the Burning Spear (MBS) for exemplary service to the country as a business leader.

    She joined General Motors in 1995 and has held several key roles in sales and marketing, both in Kenya and South Africa.

    She is also the chairperson of the Kenya Roads Board, a non-executive Director of Bamburi Cement Limited (Lafarge Group), Vice-Chair of the Kenya Private Sector Alliance and serves as a Member of the Kenya Vision 2030 Delivery Board.

    Rebecca Miano, OGW – KENGEN CEO

    Miano is the first female CEO to hold that position at KenGen since 1954. She rose through the ranks, working in various capacities from 1998, the latest being company secretary and legal affairs director, a role she held for 10 years. 

    A lawyer by profession, she worked for Kenya Power, where she gained 24 years experience in the energy sector. 

    Rebecca is one of the only two women who lead parastatals in Kenya, apart from Maryanne Mwangi CEO of National Oil.

    Rebbeca, a member of the Law Society of Kenya and also a member of Institute Certified Public Secretaries of Kenya.

    Among her many achievements,she was awarded with the Order of The Grand Warrior of Kenya.

    Kengen CEO Rebecca Miano
    Kengen CEO Rebecca Miano
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    Nasim Devji - Diamond Trust Bank CEO

    Nasim joined the DTB Group in 1996 and rose to become the CEO in only 5 years.

    She also sits on many boards of firms that make up the bank conglomerate within the region, while also sitting on the board of the NSE

    She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales, a Fellow of the Kenya Institute of Bankers, a Fellow of the Institute of Directors (Kenya) and an Associate of the Institute of Taxation (United Kingdom). 

    Before joining the banking industry, she was a tax expert working for different global companies. 

    Diamond Trust Bank Nasim Devji
    Diamond Trust Bank CEO Nasim Devji
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    Beverley Spencer-Obatoyinbo BAT MD

    She joined BAT in 1996 from the pharmaceutical industry. 

    She has held various senior roles within the BAT Group including, Marketing Director at BAT Nigeria, General Manager at BAT Egypt, Area Director for BAT West Africa and Head of Human Resources for BAT East Europe, Africa and Middle East Region.

    A nurse by profession, she worked at GlaxoSmithkline for 4 years. She later trained in business marketing which helped her rise through the ranks throughout her more than 20 year-service at BAT. 

    Beverley Spencer-Obatoyinbo
    BAT Kenya MD Beverley Spencer-Obatoyinbo
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