Apolitical, a global learning platform, has released its 100 Most Influential People in Gender Policy list for 2021.
6 among the 100 people recognized are Kenyan. They include Eva Mwai, Dr. Rose Mutiso, Fridah Githuku, Editar Adhiambo Ochieng, Marilyn Kamuru and Purity Kagwiria.
The list honours and celebrates people of all genders working on gender policy. The people named make the world more equitable, in their areas of influence . The areas inlude policymaking, public service, research, philanthropy, advocacy, and activism.
Even with the numerous challenges on women caused by the COVID-19 pandemic since last year, public servants, civil society, feminist leaders and networks made huge strides in their efforts to advance gender equality.
This year, Apolitical is celebrating people working on the following six themes, which are critical for achieving gender equality.
- Gender-Based Violence (GBV)
- Economic Justice and Rights
- Bodily Autonomy and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR)
- Feminist Action for Climate Justice
- Technology and Innovation for Gender Equality
- Feminist Movements and Leadership
People working on other areas that support and intersect with these themes, such as Gender, Peace and Security and Gender Equality Funding are also being celebrated.
The 6 Kenyan women recognized in the list are the following
1. Eva Mwai – Regional Director for East Africa, North Star Alliance
Eva Mwai has worked as a leader and manager in the NGO sector for more than 20 years. She has managed a wide range of programs in both rural and urban set-ups. As the Regional Director for East Africa, Eva provides strategic direction and leadership. Since the early years of her career, Eva has been a strong advocate for deserving populations. She has studied social work, management, and is currently pursuing a course in sustainable human development. Before joining NSA Eva worked as CEO for St. John Ambulance and Program Manager for Plan International. Eva is passionate about the last mile health and is an advocate for the health rights of girls and women. She was awarded the African Woman in Supply Chain Leadership Award in 2018 by Pamela Steele Associates Limited, an organization which promotes gender equality in supply chain leadership.
2. Dr. Rose Mutiso – Co-Founder and CEO, The Mawazo Institute and Research Director, Energy for Growth Hub
Dr. Rose M. Mutiso’s Mawazo Institute supports the next generation of female scholars and thought leaders in East Africa, and promotes public engagement with research. Dr. Rose is also the Research Director of the Energy for Growth Hub, working with global experts to find solutions for energy deficits in developing countries. Rose has worked extensively as a researcher and practitioner focused on technology and policy dimensions of energy, environment and innovation issues globally. Most recently, her work has focused on power sector issues in Africa, particularly the links between renewable energy, energy efficiency, and energy poverty. She is a Materials Scientist by training with research experience in the fields of nanotechnology and polymer physics.
3. Editar Adhiambo Ochieng – Founder, Feminist for Peace, Rights and Justice Center
Editar Adhiambo Ochieng is an unapologetic and proud feminist that champions for women’s rights and believes that every right under the law should be enjoyed by each one equally. She is the founder of the Feminist for Peace, Rights and Justice Center located in Kibera in Nairobi, Kenya. She is an intersectional feminist, and her goal is a society that “enables the full development, safety, access equal rights, fair justice and self-actualization of young women.” Her centre aims to build leadership among young women, serving as a multi-generational organizing and networking platform.
4. Fridah Githuku – Executive Director, GROOTS Kenya
Fridah Githuku is a young woman leader, and an ardent champion of gender equality and women’s rights. She is the Executive Director of GROOTS Kenya, a national movement of grassroots women and girls. GROOTS Kenya’s mission is to facilitate grassroots women and girls’ effective engagement and influence in development. She has supported grassroots women, from rural and remote areas, to ascend to elected and appointed public decision making spaces. Fridah spends her time mentoring grassroots women to leadership, powering grassroots women feminists’ organizing, and amplifying their voices. She is also a passionate promoter of the GROOTS Saving and Cooperative Society, a grassroots women-only financial institution.
5. Marilyn Muthoni Kamuru – Feminist, Lawyer and Policy Adviser
Marilyn Muthoni Kamuru is a feminist, entrepreneur, lawyer, writer and policy adviser. She is an ardent advocate for women and gender equality and equity. She is an expert on the Access to Government Procurement Opportunities Program (AGPO), the Kenyan government’s globally recognized procurement policy that reserves 30%of all public procurement for women, youth and persons living with disabilities Among other things she has: been the lead petitioner in precedent setting cases against the State on gender equality and women’s inclusion; served as an adviser on legislation and public interest litigation on gender equality; served as an adviser to the Cabinet Secretary on Gender; co-authored a seminal report analyzing women’s influence post 2010 Constitution; and is a founding member of the #WeAre52pc feminist collective.
6. Purity Kagwiria – Director, With and For Girls Fund and Collective
Purity is a feminist activist and storyteller based in Nairobi, Kenya and serves as the Director for With and For Girls Fund and Collective, the world’s only participatory fund by, and for adolescent girls. Purity previously served as the Executive Director of Akili Dada, a leadership incubator for girls and young women. Purity is passionate about nurturing girls’ freedom and agency, gender equality as well as enabling girls and young women to access spaces to advance themselves and their communities.
Find the full list HERE.