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Everyday Heroes

Everyday Heroes: Olajumoke Adenowo

Olajumoke Adenowo is a multiple award-winning Architect and Philanthropist who when profiled by CNN was referred to as “Africa’s Starchitect.” With over 30 years of experience in Architectural practice, she has designed and executed over 70 buildings. At age 14 she enrolled to study Architecture at the University of Ife, where she also completed her postgraduate studies, gaining an MSc (with Distinction) in Architecture.

A woman considered one of the richest architects in Nigeria is the Principal Partner, AD Consulting Limited & Founder of Awesome Treasures Foundation. She is a speaker, author, philanthropist and an entrepreneur. She is a successful architect (featured by the world’s foremost Architectural Journal, Architectural Record) and a force in her profession, an industry dominated by men.

But what exactly makes Olajumoke Adenowo an everyday hero? The fact that she is concerned about the younger generation and seeks to motivate them to ask the right questions from their leaders and hold them accountable. This she does through mediums such as her radio show ‘Voice of Change’ – an 8-year-old syndicated Radio Show – which reaches over 15 million people per broadcast. But in addition to this, she gives back to the society through her faith-based NGO; Awesome Treasures Foundation. The Awesome Treasures Foundation was founded in 1999 as an intercontinental philanthropic foundation; recognised by the United Nations and part of the Edmond de Rothschild Foundation Family Philanthropy platform with a mission to raise 1000 leaders, leading by Design by 2030, especially women and children. The Awesome Treasures Foundation has set out to establish Awesome Treasures Foundation with the aim of raising transformational leaders towards national development.

What’s more? The majority of her foundation’s programming focuses on disadvantaged women and children. ATF runs Camp Dawn, an educational camp, to address the education gap for inner-city kids. It also manages Awesome Princesses, caring for young girls from the slums of Lagos who are at risk of sexual abuse and HIV/AIDS, supplying medical screenings and educational intervention. Awesome Treasures closely mentors women for transnational leadership and entrepreneurship through vocational training, business classes and leadership training that takes place across Nigeria. In its first 15 years, 70,000 people have attended ATF leadership summits.

Olajumoke Adenowo: Locally Relevant, Globally Recognised

Adenowo is also the recipient of the Cambridge African Society Award and has been honoured as an Ambassador of Excellence for outstanding achievements in Architecture and women development by her alma mater. She was recognized as one of the 100 most Influential Nigerians and was also named as one of the Most Inspiring Women in Nigeria. She is featured amongst other globally prominent people of African Ancestry in the Black History Hall of Fame in the University of West Bristol, UK.

As an Architect, Adenowo’s portfolio includes a host of multi-national and Nigerian clients including some of the world’s strongest brands like CocaCola and L’Oreal. She was honoured as a Laureate and a Guest Scientist at the Chair of Theory, History of Architecture and Art & Design arm of the university’s Department of Architecture.

In 2018 she was listed by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) as one of the most inspirational women in architecture today. In 2019, Olajumoke Adenowo was appointed as Visiting Professor at the Technische Universitat Munchen (TUM) in Germany.

So much of an exemplary woman for so many younger women and men. The only limit is how far we aspire, Adenowo is a proof and a reminder that the Nigerian gene is capable of International feats in whatever sphere of influence it is found.


Cartier Women’s Initiative


Featured Image Source: Momo Africa

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Jeremiah Aluwong

Jeremiah is a scholar and a poet. He has a keen eye for studying the world and is passionate about people. He tweets at @jeremiahaluwong.

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