Renowned sustainability and communications entrepreneur, and Chief Executive of Nigerian-based CSR-in-Action Group, Bekeme Olowola, has won the award of ‘Women Role Model in Mining and Geosciences in Nigeria’. This is in recognition of the most exceptional, inspirational Nigerian women with significant contributions to the mining and geoscience industry through technology in the mineral-rich West African country. Similarly, her non-profit organisation, CSR-in-Action Advocacy, received the award of the ‘Best Performing NGO in Mining and Geosciences’, which honours any non-governmental organisation that has committed its activities to solicit for, educate, and create awareness for solutions to challenges within the industry in Nigeria.
Both awards were presented at the annual Awards and Investiture of the Nigerian Institute of Mining and Geosciences (NIMG) on the 10th of November 2021 in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital. “In response to the nominations of your name by credible Nigerians and stakeholders through our various voting and nomination platforms, we are glad to inform you that after a thorough selection and assessment process by our award nomination and selection council, you have been unanimously endorsed for conferment and recognition as the Women Role Model in Mining and Geosciences in Nigeria,” the NIMG said in a letter inviting Masade-Olowola to the awards.
Bekeme Olowola leads CSR-in-Action, a group made of a consulting firm, a think tank, and a training institute dedicated to corporate social responsibility, policy development, advocacy, empowerment, and sustainable development in the region. She is also a board member of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the international organization advancing the practice of sustainability reporting becoming the first out of West Africa. Under her leadership, CSR-in-Action has promoted sustainability measurement and reporting using the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards specifically, since 2011, and has catalysed the adoption of sustainability strategies and transparency in the region.
In July 2021, CSR-in-Action opened a North American branch in Ontario, Canada, and joined the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC), to facilitate access for North American extractive firms seeking a foothold in Africa whilst increasing the firm’s global reach. Olowola has engaged stakeholders throughout the economic value chain in Africa, initiating the annual Sustainability in the Extractive Industries (SITEI) Conference, the largest development focused gathering for extractives, and has nurtured it into its tenth year with strong government, business, civil society, and other key stakeholders’ participation. SITEI is also the platform on which she recently spearheaded the design and development of the West African region’s premier Community Engagement Standards (CES) a conflict mitigating and management tool for the extractive industries of developing economies.
She has won many industry awards and recognitions, including the Marketing Communication Personality Leadership Prize for the Year 2017, and the Sustainability Professional of the Year, 2019. Also in 2019, she was named in Leading Ladies Africa’s 100 Most Inspiring Women in Africa list.
Nigeria is a resource-rich country with both solid minerals and fossil fuels. The country is home to almost all the solid minerals that exist including Zincite, a rare gemstone, and Bitumen, of which Nigeria has the second-largest deposit in the world. Olowola, amongst others, continues to work towards ensuring a more sustainable and successful solid minerals sector in Nigeria.