We are thrilled to reveal the line up of hosts and speakers (hot seat guests) who will join Tope Fajingbesi Balogun to light up the stage at She-EO 3.0: Be More Edition at the University of Baltimore on Saturday July 28th. We are especially honored to announce that Mayor Catherine E. Pugh, the Mayor of Baltimore will be our special guest of honor at the occasion.
If our guests’ profiles inspire you, then be sure to get your tickets today.
Hot Seat Guests
Douglas A. C. Eze established Largo Financial Services Inc. in 2000 with a vision to provide individuals and small business owners with the education and guidance needed to achieve financial freedom. As a wealth strategist, award-winning financial advisor and author, Douglas believes in helping his clients find money in places they may be throwing it away unknowingly and unnecessarily. He also equips individuals with the information and knowledge to make sound financial decisions. With over 18 years of experience in the financial services industry, Douglas has continually studied and trained to stay current on the principles and trends of personal finance and wealth accumulation. His “common sense”, pragmatic approach when considering financial alternatives stands out among others. Douglas is a distinguished member of the exclusive Million Dollar Roundtable, an organization of notable financial representatives. As a leading business figure, Douglas has also been featured in Profile Magazine and Power Broker Magazine as one of the Top 25 Top Wealth Builders and Financial Professionals in the Tampa Bay Area. Douglas will be answering the toughest questions about getting debt and wealth creation/retention. So if you want to do better in this area, you should reserve your seat at She-EO today.
Kathy Hankins is the owner of KatTur LLC, for health and wellness, as well as patient advocacy. She received her Registered Yoga Teacher certification in 2014, but has been a practicing yogi since 1973. She currently teaches mixed level classes of various types of yoga and meditation at the Western Presbyterian Church in the Foggy Bottom area of Washington, D.C. She occasionally teaches at the Women’s Center in Rockville, Maryland. Kathy is also a “People Walker,” which is a practice of yoga and walking for fitness and wellbeing.
Najwa Awad is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW-C) that has provided mental health services to individuals and families in the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area for over 10 years. She obtained a Bachelors degree in Psychology at George Mason University and a Masters in Social Work at Virginia Commonwealth University specializing in the clinical treatment of individuals and families. Najwa also has post graduate education in the treatment of complex psychiatric trauma and online counseling. Her experience in the field is diverse and includes providing services at group homes, schools and in the foster care system. Most recently Najwa has been working and supervising in outpatient mental health settings providing therapy to women, children and families. Commonly treated issues include trauma, mood disorders, behavioral disorders and anxiety. Najwa gives regular mental health workshops in the community and is also Fellow at the Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research.
Abi (Bisoye) Akinola is a serial entrepreneur. She is the owner and CEO of Siobhan Foods -a franchisee of a top Quick Service Restaurant brand (Chicken Republic) in Nigeria- and the founder of Tea For Two, a catering company which serviced a couple of Primary schools in Ikoyi and Lekki, Lagos. She graduated with a B.Sc Estate Management and an MBA from the University of Lagos, Nigeria. She was the Pastor of Oakwood, a parish of the RCCG in Lekki Lagos from March 2015 to October 2016 when she moved to Paris with her family. She’s a speaker who also loves to write in her spare time. Abi currently lives in a suburb of Paris, France.
Cordelia Gaffar is an international best-selling published author, speaker, Certified in Sports Nutrition, a former corporate accountant and mom of 6. She helps women to heal by building a system of self-nurturing nourishing with wholesome food, energizing with movement and reframing her perspective with sweet talk ultimately eliminating the cause of her health conditions and detox her body. After the birth of her second child, she sought medical attention for postpartum depression and extreme weight gain which led to her studies in nutrition, exercise, and mindset. In less than a year, she lost over 60 pounds and regained clarity and joy. With that transformation, it became her mission to hone that superpower and help women to do the same. She is the hostess of the Replenish Me show on the Progressive Radio Network and featured on international Radio 786 in Cape Town, South Africa.
Funlayo Alabi (CEO, Shea Radiance) and her husband Shola Alabi co-founded Shea Radiance, a natural beauty brand based in Maryland that manufactures hair and body care products using shea butter as a key ingredient. Their business was born out of a need to find a natural solution for their children’s eczema and dry skin problems. An integral part of Shea Radiance mission is to empower 16 million African women who processing shea nuts and butter, and connect them with women around the world who benefit from their artisan craftsmanship. Shea Radiance products can be found in Natural Specialty stores across the US including Whole Foods Markets in the Mid Atlantic region. Funlayo serves as the Chair of the Global Shea Alliance Sustainability Working Group where she is responsible for leading change to ensure the next generation of business values the input of the women whose labor is so instrumental to the industry. Funlayo holds a B.A. in International Business from Howard University and an M.B.A. from Regent University.
Funmi Williamson, Senior Vice President & Chief Commercial Risk Officer, leads the risk management function for Constellation and Exelon Generation. As a member of the Constellation Leadership Committee, Williamson is responsible for the identification, assessment, and monitoring of Strategic, Financial and Operational risks, and the communication of those risks to the Finance and Risk Committee of the Board of Directors. Previously, Williamson was vice president, Commercial Risk Management. In that role, she was responsible for ensuring that all commercial activities were aligned with Exelon’s risk appetite while providing the opportunity for growth. Prior to joining Constellation, she was a member of the Assurance and Business Advisory team at Arthur Andersen. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria, and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.
Seun Obajolu is an internationally acclaimed Motivational Speaker, Relationship Coach, and Social Media Influencer with a focus on Life coaching, Relationships and Marriages. She is the Founder/CEO of Inspyred Hope – an Umbrella Nonprofit organization registered in the United States and Nigeria, which empowers women and families through outreach programs, advocacy and literacy, and support groups. She is very passionate about issues affecting women and families, and she is an avid change agent in reversing the status quo of women marginalization in modern societies. She holds a Bachelor’s of science degree in Nursing from Grand Canyon University, Arizona, USA. She is married with 4 Girls. Seun will be tackling tough questions about sex and intimacy at She-EO 3.0: Be More Edition.
Dr. Adeola Oke, a Nurse, Public Health Professional and experienced Clinical Pharmacy Specialist, helps people enjoy a healthy and wholesome life through a holistic approach to health-care. She is three allied health professionals in one! She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Public Health and Doctor of Pharmacy degrees from University of Maryland. She is also a Board-Certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist. She experienced the benefit of quality natural supplements when she woke up one day unable to walk. After getting no relief from acetaminophen or ibuprofen, she turned to a natural pain supplement. An hour after taking the supplement, she was able to walk again without pain! She currently works with veterans to optimize their health. Her medical knowledge, personal experiences and passion for public health inspired her upcoming book titled: “Heal Thy Joints: Pharmacist Reveals Insider Secrets To Pain Relief Safely & Naturally.”
ADEOLA ARIYO is an inspirational speaker, entrepreneur and an aspiring author. She’s very passionate about inspiring people to live a fulfilled life and driven by women and children empowerment. Although trained as a Software Engineer, she’s always been involved in mentoring and tutoring the youth since her early years. She believes strongly in the importance of having a mentor to help guide, nurture and develop one’s gifts. This passion of hers led to the birth of THE GEMZ, Inc., a mentoring and leadership program in the Washington DC metropolitan area, for girls and young ladies between the ages of 11 and 18. In 2016, the organization added a new initiative to provide a platform and host networking and training events for women between the ages of 35 and 50 to inspire them to network, dream again, launch businesses and impact the younger generation. Adeola’s initiatives have been featured on the Washington post, 104.1 and recently interviewed on Good morning Washington, ABC7 news. Adeola is passionate about living a life of legacy by making an impact in the lives of others. Her motto is to live and not merely exist. She is married with 3 adorable sons and currently resides in Greenbelt, Maryland.
Tausi Suedi is a multilingual global public health policy professional whose passion and work primarily focuses on maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health in marginalized communities mainly in low- and middle-income countries. With a public track record reflecting more than twelve years of international work experience, understanding of cultural complexities and the vast global health landscape, Suedi brings a unique and amplified voice to address the health access challenges women, children, and youth in underserved urban and rural areas are facing. Fueled by her own maternal health experiences, Childbirth Survival International (CSI) was birthed. At CSI, a global nonprofit she cofounded in 2013, her role is centered on effective grassroots interventions in reproductive, maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent/youth health; shaping health policies to reach the unreached with quality health services and information; strengthening capacity of frontline health workers and health facilities especially in underserved communities to provide basic health services; being strategic in rallying support from the community especially men and local/religious leaders to champion issues for women and girls; drive economic empowerment opportunities for women and adolescents/youth forced to drop out of school; plus engaging with government leaders, partners, donors and various stakeholders to maximize outreach and impact. Under her leadership, CSI currently spans across five countries in sub-Saharan Africa: Tanzania, Uganda, Somalia, Ghana, and Nigeria; including locally in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. In May 2003, Suedi graduated from Towson University in Maryland with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health with a minor in Geography and Environmental Planning. Driven and eager to serve humanity, she earned a Master of Public Health track Global Health Policy from the George Washington University, District of Columbia in May 2005.
Dr. Rita Bailey-Roland, CPA is a graduate of George Washington University (GWU) with a degree in Accountancy. She is a Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant (ChFEBC(sm) and the Founder and President of Affordable Benefits Solutions, Inc. She started her successful career at CSO as an Agent. Years later she moved on to become President of EU Financial, Inc. a million dollar insurance agency. In 2004, Rita aided in the development of the government division of Financial Assurance Corporation and was appointed Vice President. Rita has been assisting clients for the last 26 years accumulating over 2,600 clients. She has educated taught several workshops for Blacks in Government, Federally Employed Women, IRS, EPA, APWU, VA, Dept of Justice, NTEU and many more agencies and associations. Dedicating her insurance/ financial career to changing people’s lives one at a time came from her life experiences and a result of her mother’s death when she was 11 years old. Rita realized then and teaches now, that understanding your employee benefits are crucial to planning for the financial future for you and your family. Rita is an advocate for helping people to align their values and dreams with their actions. She is known for helping her clients strategize their financial plans. She’s committed to her business through her hard work, dedication and expanding her client base by providing a full range of products and services.
Kumba is a mother, wife, business owner in Africa, humanitarian and advocate for women issues. She is the proprietor and creative director of “Tresor, the Closet and Beyond” , a leading high end fashion store in The Gambia, which opened in 2010. Tresor was awarded the fashion store of the year in The Gambia in 2012, after just only two years in business. Kumba runs her business by spending significant amounts of time in both the USA and Africa, effectively leverages technology to efficiently manage her business. Kumba is also founder of the “Yes, We Can Read” program which focuses on young kids in The Gambia. This was started and privately funded by her family in 2009. Sponsorship has expanded to include other Gambians and non-Gambians in the diaspora as well as 10% of sales proceeds from Tresor, the Closet and Beyond. Kumba is the founder of the Night of Excellence in The Gambia, which recognizes the outstanding achievements of Gambian women both in The Gambia and the diaspora. The event is also a fundraiser for the “Yes, We Can Read” program. Kumba has substantial experience both in managerial roles and as a high grossing sales executive in the US. Kumba holds a degree in international business and finance from the Golden Gate University in San Francisco. She was born in The Gambia and came to the USA after high school to attend university. She is a dual citizen of the USA and The Gambia.
Ms. Magda N. Yrizarry serves as Senior Vice President and Chief Talent & Diversity Officer at Verizon Communications Inc. Ms. Yrizarry is responsible for designing strategies related to diversity, ethics, company culture, safety and environment. Ms. Yrizarry served as Vice President of Workplace Culture, Diversity & Compliance at Verizon Communications Inc. and served as its Vice president of Workplace Culture and Compliance since August
An attorney with a biotechnology background, Bunmi has a career that spans 16 years moving fluidly between the legal and biotechnology world. While her current profession is as an ethics attorney, she continues to pursue her various passions. A strong believer in nourishing your creative spirit, she enjoys writing, cooking, baking, and refurbishing used furniture; hiking the great outdoors is her self-care of choice. A mother to three Nigerian-American children, she created the children’s book club, Atlas Kids Book Club, as part of her efforts to ensure that her children remain connected with their African heritage and continue to develop a global awareness through literature. A student of authenticity and vulnerability, Bunmi studies the teachings of experts such as Brene Brown and Pema Chodron, incorporating these lessons into daily life. An avid reader and culture seeker, she believes that a curious mind, a yearning for constant learning, a fearless pursuit of your purpose, and an active practice of giving and gratitude are key to living your best life.
Her name is Rashidat Fawehinmi Raji and she is HER GiST. HER GiST is about a Nigerian American woman; who is reaching for her purpose, yet rooted in her culture. She is passionate about her purpose to serve others, her tribe who she affectionately calls “my Gistas.” She serves them as a stock broker, who trades in an essential commodity, Laughter. With humor, she helps her Gistas be comfortable in their skin and ‘stand out’ rather than ‘blend in’ in whatever western situation they may find themselves. That’s why her goal is “making you laugh seriously.”
Lolade Olayokun is the second to last of five children in her family. As fate would have it, the pressure for her to become a doctor or lawyer had faded away by the time her parents were ready to raise her. Shortly after her reign as Miss.Nigeria Independence 2011-12, she kicked off her career in entertainment and Journalism. The name MC Lolahstic has allowed Lolade to speak at Columbia University, host events in London, Toke Makinwa book signing event in Lagos Nigeria, and host on and off the red carpet. In the spring and Fall semesters, Lolade curates the MC Lolahstic College Tour, where she hosts various African Student Organization shows around the country. When Lolade is passionate about something, she goes the extra mile to make sure everyone in her network knows about it. Through these milestones, Lolade became the first producer and Media Correspondent for Battabox.com in the United States. These milestones have provided unlimited spaces for her to be a creative, humor news driven, and a entertainment junkie that will not stop until she has fulfilled her level of self-success and self-fulfillment.