2019 Kimathi Kuenyehia-MiLEAD reading prize winners announced


The Kimathi Kuenyehia Foundation and the Moremi Initiative for Women’s Leadership in Africa have announced the winners of the 2019 Kimathi Kuenyehia-MiLEAD reading prize. A joint initiative of the two institutions launched in 2015, with the primary goal of encouraging good reading habits among the young women leaders in Moremi Initiative’s MILEAD Fellows Programme for the continent’s most promising emerging leaders.

Mawuli Dake, Co-Founder of Moremi Initiative, in congratulating the winners stated that:
“No leader, even as exceptional as our Fellows, can be so perfect as to not require improvement. That is why we are excited about the partnership with Kimathi Kuenyehia Foundation for motivating, instilling and rewarding reading as a habit for the leaders we develop”.

The 2019 reading challenge was open to the 2019 MILEAD Fellows representing 18 countries in Africa and the diaspora. Competitors were required to read a book each week for 25 weeks, for the chance to win a US$1,000 prize. A book report was submitted every Monday, with preference for books authored by female authors or leaders. The books read were evaluated on their relevance to personal development, professional development, and promoting the tenets of outstanding leadership.

Three winners were selected by the evaluation committee made up of Moremi Initiative, Kimathi Kuenyehia Foundation and the immediate-past winner.

Ms. Grace Amponsah (2019 MILEAD Fellow, Ghana) – 1st Prize, US$1,000
Ms. Helena Abozan (2019 MILEAD Fellow, Cote d’Ivoire) – 2nd Prize, US$700
Ms. Dorcas Kwofie (2019 MILEAD Fellow, Ghana) – 3rd Prize, US$500

According to Mr. Kimathi Kuenyehia, an avid reader and a supporter of the competition:
“The competition requires discipline and consistency – two key attributes of transformational leaders. Our goal is to instil in these young women leaders the invaluable lesson of reading, learning and the pursuit of excellence”.

All prizes are sponsored by the Foundation, with a special prize to Ms. Adjoa Brigitte Adonou of Togo from Mr. Kuenyehia for demonstrating exceptional commitment by continuously reading a book every week and sending her book report every Monday, even after the competition ended.

In accepting her prize, Ms. Grace Amponsah, a Schwarzman scholar and founder of Bowney Initiative – an organisation committed to unleashing the potential of adolescent girls in Ghana stated:

“I realised I could read more if I spent less time on social media. By dedicating a quarter of our time spent on social media to reading, we will not only expand on our experiences but also be better placed to contribute meaningfully to solving some of the world’s toughest problems.”

Last year’s prize was won by Ms. Dudzai Mureyi from Zimbabwe, Sheillah Mutetire from Uganda and Grace Ineza from Rwanda.

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