Women You Should Know is a Connect Nigeria feature celebrating Nigerian women who are inspirational, not only in their achievements, but also in the way they live their lives and give back to the society. An example of such a woman is Bolanle Austen-Peters, the Managing Director and Founder of Terra Kulture; the renowned Arts and Cultural organization located in Lagos. Bolanle Austen-Peters is an accomplished lawyer, businesswoman and avid Art collector.
She attended the International School in Ibadan, and received her bachelor’s degree in Law at the University of Lagos. She proceeded to the London School of Economics for an LLM in International Human Rights Law. Following her educational pursuits, Bolanle worked with the law firm of Afe Babalola & Co., between 1992 and 1994. She further worked with the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights in Geveva, Switzerland, as well as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Switzerland and Ethiopia. Subsequently, Bolanle Austen-Peters worked at the United Nations Development Program office in Namibia where she assisted in building Namibia’s Poverty Alleviation Plan and Human Rights Project.
Between the years 2000 and 2003, she returned to Nigeria as a Consultant to the United Nations Development Programme in Lagos, and was charged with the responsibilities of monitoring and evaluation for UNDP activities in Nigeria. As an experienced legal practitioner, she has also worked with the renowned law firm of Ajumogobia and Okeke, as well as an indigenous Petroleum Trading Company.
The business side to Bolanle Austen-Peters is perhaps most evident in her establishment of Terra Kulture. If you are looking for somewhere to enjoy the diversity of culture in Nigeria, have good food and interesting local entertainment in Lagos, Terra Kulture is the place to be. It is made up of a Theatre, an Art Gallery, a Food Court, and an Events Center. Terra Kulture is popularly known to residents and tourists in Lagos as one of the ultimate recreational destinations.
The society celebrates women, but more often than not, women also celebrate women. It is not unusual to discover that women are always at the forefront of empowering, encouraging, and supporting other women. For Bolanle Austen-Peters, her support and empowerment of women come in the form of her being an active member of the Executive Council of WIMBIZ– Women in Management, Business and Public Service. WIMBIZ is a Nigerian non-governmental organization founded in 2002 to assist women in leadership, capacity building and networking. The organization aims to empower and encourage women to fulfill their potentials and be game changers in the society.
The personality of Bolanle Austen-Peters is that of a hardworking and inspiring woman, someone who takes bold steps to achieve her dreams, establish herself as an authority, and inspire others.
About the Author: Amina Salau is a writer and editor running The Illuminated Pen. You can find her online at www.theilluminatedpen.com and on Twitter (@_Aminah)