Heckerbella celebrate 20 remarkable women who have harnessed the power of technology to revolutionize medical services and leapfrog the challenges of the traditional healthcare industry.
We salute these women and stand with them as they continue to disrupt, innovate and push the boundaries of possibilities in healthcare.
As role models they shared their thoughts on “the impact of technology on the girl child in the healthcare.”
Cheers to every woman who has boldly stepped out to lead the way with groundbreaking digital solutions and continues to inspire us with their commitment to greatness.
- Fola Akinrinlola
Fola Akinrinlola is a seasoned resourceful and result oriented healthcare professional with a wide-ranging 25 years' experience, Garnered in the United Kingdom and Africa in clinical cardiology services, medical devices sales and marketing, business development market development and senior-level management. She is an economics graduate of the university of east London, UK and a physiology graduate of city of Westminster college, London Uk. Fola is the first cardiac physiologist in Nigeria and to date is responsible for training quite a number of cardiac physiologists in Nigeria. She began her career in the United Kingdom where she worked, over a period of 11 years with several top-notch hospitals as a cardiac physiologist. On her return to Nigeria, she first worked as Head cardiac physiologist with Lagos state teaching hospital Ikeja, Lagos before moving to Matronic Nigeria, a medical device company, where she rose to being lead cardiovascular group manager, West Africa. Currently she works for General Electric (a leading global medical technology and life sciences company) in Lagos Nigeria, as Channels Sales Director, West and central Africa and Indian Ocean, responsible for General Electric healthcare indirect business in Angola, Cape Verde, Ghana, Liberia, Madagascar, Mauritius, Nigeria, Seychelles and Sierra Leone.
- Modupe Elebute-Odunsi
After qualifying from the College of Medicine, University of Lagos in 1986, Dr Elebute completed postgraduate training in Internal Medicine and Haemato-Oncology at centres of excellence in London, including St Bartholomew’s Hospital, St George’s Hospital and The Royal Marsden. She received a prestigious fellowship from the Leukemia Research Fund and gained a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree from the University of London for her ground-breaking work. In the UK, Dr. Elebute has held Consultant and Honorary Senior Lecturer posts at St George’s Hospital, the National Blood Service and King’s College Hospital, and has a well-established private practice at the Spire and Lister Hospitals. In Nigeria, she has worked at the Lagoon Hospitals, where she was instrumental in developing a pathology laboratory and a sickle cell clinic. Dr. Elebute is widely published in scientific journals and textbooks. Passionate about giving back, she helped set up the Sickle Cell Club of Lagos whilst still at medical school. She is Patron of Build Africa and past Trustee of The Walkabout Foundation. The Marcelle Ruth Cancer Centre and Specialist Hospital has opened to provide a world-class, “one-stop” centre for the comprehensive treatment of cancer and other specialist conditions. At the purpose-built premises on Victoria Island, Lagos, the team offers the highest standards of care with the latest treatments and technology, in comfortable surroundings designed to promote healing. The hospital is named in honour of the founder’s mother-in-law, Mrs. Marcelle Ruth Odunsi (1931-1998), previously Vice-Principal, Igbobi College, Lagos and Principal, Government Girls’ College, Agege.
- Unoma Grant
Unoma Grant graduated from the University of Cape Town in South Africa in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. She worked as a Human Resources/ Industrialization Analyst with Nextzon Business Services from 2009 – 2011 where she helped develop and used technology to implement Human resources and Operational procedures and guidelines in several SMEs. In 2010 she worked with Dr. Ngozi Onyia to start Paelon and in 2011 left Nextzon and Joined Paelon full time. Since then, she has gradually risen to the position of Chief Operating Officer, overseeing all the non-medical operations & staff of the hospital, the hospital’s brand. Being a key member of the team that built Paelon Memorial Hospital from an outpatient clinic to a group of 4 hospitals & clinics in Lagos & Delta States enabled her to hone her skills in leadership, strategy development, digital transformation, operational planning, financial management, operations, brand management and human resource management by successfully developing, growing, and running the entire non-clinical function of the 13-year-old hospital.
- Dr. Tiwa Giwa-Tubosun
Temie Giwa-Tubosun studied International Public Management from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies. She has over 10 years of health management experience with the Department for International Development (DFID), World Health Organization, UNDP, and the Lagos State Government. In 2014, the BBC listed her as one of the 100 Women changing the world. She was also recognized as an African Innovator by Quartz and the World Economic Forum. She is the Founder and CEO of LifeBank; Africa's healthcare supply chain engine. The company helps hospitals discover essential medical suppliers and delivers them in the right condition and on time.
- Dr Olayemi Dawodu
Dr Olayemi Dawodu is the MD/CEO Clina-Lancet Laboratories a household name in the healthcare space and a part of the Cerba-Lancet Healthcare group, she started her career with the organization in 2015 as the country Histopathologist where she built the trust of fellow consultants and effectively managed the histopathology unit before being promoted to her current position in 2016. She is a Board member of Clina- Lancet Laboratories, Nigeria. In her role as the CEO, she was positioned at the forefront of the business where she provides strategic leadership, manages daily business operations and oversees the overall growth and development of the organization.
- Fola Laoye
Fola Laoye is the co-Founder and CEO of Iwosan Investments Limited, a Health Investments Holding Company. She is also the Founder and CEO of Health Markets Africa, a healthcare advisory and investment company, dedicated to investing in Healthcare Infrastructure across Nigeria and was Director at Investment Fund for Health in Africa (IFHA), a pioneer private equity fund focused on Healthcare in Africa. She is a founding board member of Hygeia Group Nigeria, promoters of Lagoon Hospitals and Hygeia HMO, and while there, she recorded laudable feats as CEO (2002-2012) and as Chairperson (2012-2015). She is also a Trustee of the board of the Society for Quality in Healthcare in Nigeria (SQHN). She is Chairperson of the boards of Old Mutual Life Assurance and FSDH Asset Management. As part of her philanthropic dispositions, she currently chairs the ElebuteLUTH Welfare Board and co-chairs the Africa Regional Board of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO).
- Adeola Alli
Adeola Alli is the CEO & Founder at OneHealth, an online Pharmacy and healthcare platform providing access to medicines and healthcare solutions for individuals and healthcare providers. As a licensed Pharmacist in the United Kingdom and United States of America, Adeola launched OneHealth in Nigeria when she realized it was difficult to purchase basic medications in the country for her child. OneHealth enables Adeola to leverage technology to get the right medicines, at the right time to the right hand. She uses properly curated and analyzed data and partners with different health service providers to offer relevant health solutions to many people. So far she has helped at least 10,000+ people gain access to pharmacare from a network of over 1000 pharmacies across the 36 states of Nigeria.
- Abimbola Adebakin
Abimbola Adebakin is a Certified Performance Technologist (CPT), a pharmacist, management consultant and tech innovator who is keen to drive performance improvement in the African Healthcare system. She is the Founder/CEO of Advantage Health Africa powering myPharmacy (franchise pharmacy chain + pharmacy resource centre), myMedicines (tech-enabled lastmile access to medication), myAdvantage (health affordability solution via a community-as-a-Service) as well as a pharmaceutical sales & marketing venture, Advantage Pharma.
- Clare Omatseye
“Clare Omatseye is the Founder/Managing Director of JNC International, a 19-year-old Turnkey Medical Equipment Solutions company, which exclusively represents 28 Global Original Medical Equipment Manufacturers (OEM’s) like Canon Medical and Olympus - Japan, ElektaSweden, and Medtronic -USA; and the Chairman/Founder of Vaccipharm Limited, a 23-yearold cold chain Vaccine, Pharma & Medical consumable wholesale distribution company. She has a B. Pharm from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria and an MBA from IESE Business School, Barcelona. She has attended several executive courses at the Harvard Business School, Yale University, INSEAD France, IESE Spain and the prestigious Lagos Business School (LBS).
- Angela Nwaneri
Angela is the Business Manager and Chief Operating Officer of First Cardiology Consultants/FCC Healthcare, a multi-specialist hospital whose mission is to deliver the highest quality comprehensive Medical and Surgical care through innovative use of modern technology and a commitment to local capacity building, education and collaborative research. Before joining FCC Healthcare, Angela was at Johnson & Johnson (J&J), from where she recently retired as Vice President and General Counsel, Janssen Pharmaceuticals and the Consumer Group of Companies. As General Counsel, she was a member of the Management Boards, and led a global team that was responsible for all legal matters concerning J&J, worldwide. Prior to her legal career, Angela spent several years on the business side and was for several years a Marketing Supervisor at 3M Corporation.
- Funmi Adewara
Dr Funmi Adewara is a British-Nigerian Physician and Cambridge trained Bioscience multi-award-winning entrepreneur and a globally recognized telehealth expert, with a background in Medicine, Pharmaceutical and Business Development. Her career spans more than fifteen years working within the NHS UK and a stint in the pharmaceutical industry as a Drug Safety Physician. Funmi is passionate about changing the poor narrative of healthcare in underserved communities and has led a multi-disciplinary team to design comprehensive telehealth program that addresses multiple challenges such as shortage of doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals, long distance travel, and high treatment costs. Dr Adewara contributes to policy formulation on healthcare and particularly around telehealth programs for Africa at both local and regional levels serving as an external reviewer to the Africa Development Bank, contributor to United Nations, World Health Summit and the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, MDCN. Dr Adewara has earned herself and Mobihealth multiple awards globally. She was one of the seven Winners of the World Bank SDGs & Her 2020 Awards amongst 2400 entries globally; Sanofi Africa-Tech Challenge (Winner, Category 2) which held virtually in Paris on the 11th of June 2020 amongst 268 contestants across 34 countries.
- Morenike Fajemisin
Morenike Fajemisin is a pharmacist, an entrepreneur, and the CEO & Founder of Whispa Health. She has won multiple awards including the 120under40 family planning leader award, World Health Organization (W.H.O) Africa’s Top 30 Innovator award, Bayer Foundation’s Women Empowerment Award, Google Black Founder’s Award and most recently Unorthodox Philanthropy’s extraordinary leader award. She is passionate about improving Maternal & child health and Sexual & Reproductive Health and Rights. She has the vision to provide young women and men all over Africa with quality health information, products, and services and to reduce the rate at which young people (particularly women) who are seeking sexual and reproductive healthcare are discouraged by myths, misconceptions, and biased health professionals.
- Folake Owodunni
Folake Owodunni is the co-founder and CEO of Emergency Response Africa (ERA), a healthcare technology company that is changing how medical emergencies are managed in Africa, beginning in Nigeria. ERA saves lives by connecting individuals experiencing a medical emergency to the largest network of Community First Responders, ambulances, and hospitals to deliver care in minutes using technology. ERA has been recognized for the work it is doing in providing technology-enabled care, including features in national newspapers and leading technology publications. Folake has a Master's in Global Health & Development from University College London, and a master’s in business Entrepreneurship & Technology (MBET) from the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada. She has over 12 years of experience working in healthcare, marketing communications, and management consulting, with companies in Nigeria, the United States, and Canada. She is certified as a First Responder with the Canadian Red Cross and is passionate about Africa's rising tech ecosystem and making fast, reliable emergency medical care accessible to all Africans using technology. She is the recipient of multiple awards and development grants including the Google Black Founders Fund, JICA’s Next Innovation with Japan Award, and many others.
- Vivian Nwaka
“Vivian Nwakah is the Founder/CEO of Medsaf. A technology company building software to facilitate, finance and increase quality and affordability of pharmaceutical products in emerging markets. Medsaf was founded because a friend of Vivian’s died from taking a fake malaria pill. In response, Vivian created Medsaf from scratch and has led the company to high growth and deep penetration across Nigeria. She is an award-winning founder having received recognition from Forbes, The British Royal Family, Viva Tech, Women in Africa, Seedstars and many more, as a high-impact entrepreneur. She has won a myriad of awards for being a leader in sales throughout her entire career. Prior to Medsaf she launched a hybrid solar energy company in Nigeria as well as home health care agencies in the United States. She also was in the financial lending industry leading a South Suburban Chicago district to place in the top 10 in the country. She grew up in Chicago Illinois and has traveled the world for business and pleasure. She completed undergraduate studies at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign and an MBA program in the US, France, and Brazil.
- Dr. Omolola Salako
Omolola is a Lecturer and Director of RBRR Digital Health Hub at the College of Medicine, University of Lagos. Her research interests are digital oncology, remote symptom monitoring, and developing and implementing digital health interventions. She is listed as one of the 2021 Brightest Minds in Cancer Research by the Conquer Cancer Foundation and the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Fueled by her sister’s cancer story, Omolola aims to expand access to quality cancer care. She is leveraging technology to close the cancer care gap and empower patients to make confident care decisions. She founded Oncopadi App: A friendly cancer app that connects patients and caregivers to cancer specialists, coping resources, education and a passionate community of survivors. Her mobile Health research group developed the Patient-Reported Outcome Side-Effects tool, enabling African cancer patients to report and manage their symptoms from their smartphones remotely. With the generation of real-world healthcare data, the tool is the smartest way to get around side effects.
- Dr Emmanuella Zamba
Dr. Emmanuella Zamba is a Medical Doctor and a Public Servant. A public health expert and a health system strengthening specialist. She has vast experience in Healthcare Planning, Human Resource for Health, Quality and Healthcare management, Health Financing, Public-Private Partnerships Policy development, Monitoring and Evaluation, Project Management, Research and Data Management. She is currently General Manager, Lagos State Health Management Agency (LASHMA), the agency responsible for ensuring that all Lagos residents have access to affordable and qualitative healthcare and also responsible for regulating and sanitizing the health insurance space in Lagos State. On assumption of office as General Manager, LASHMA, Dr. Zamba has developed and implemented numerous initiatives geared towards the success of the Lagos State Health Scheme (LSHS). Initiatives such as rebranding the scheme into ILERA EKO Social Health Plan for relatability to the informal sector; Public-Private-Partnerships (PPP) to expand health care facilities on the scheme; Developing innovative financing structures, Evolving quality improvement measures to improve service delivery at the Health care provider level; Development of additional health plans and a flexible payment mechanism on the scheme to cover the various segments of the society; Also, the Provision of immediate intervention for survivors of sexual violence, through the Domestic & Sexual Violence Intervention Fund (DSVIF) by the First lady of Lagos State, Dr. Ibijoke Claudiana Sanwo-Olu.
- Temi Marcella Awogboro
Temi Marcella Awogboro is an investor, pioneer and change agent driven by a mission to unlock the transformational power of capital as a catalyst for positive change globally. Temi is a leading investment professional with over 15 years of experience and has committed over half a billion dollars in capital across developed and growth markets. Her experience spans origination, execution, portfolio management, exits, business building, operations, board formation, and participation. Temi is the Founding Partner of Alcent Capital, a growth fund, investing catalytic growth capital into proven technology companies with global ambitions, unlocking the vast potential across Africa’s leading tech ecosystems. Temi co-founded early-stage investment platforms, Kairos Angels and MAGIC, building a global portfolio of over 200 companies across 25 countries and 5 continents. Through her platforms, Temi is building and cultivating disruptive, transformative institutions that will emerge as today’s regional champions and tomorrow’s global challengers. Temi served as the Executive Director of Evercare Hospital Lekki, a TPG portfolio company, where she was instrumental in leading the investment in, designing, building, and operating one of the largest and most advanced private hospitals in Nigeria in a bid to transform the healthcare landscape. Prior to that, she was the regional lead of the US$ 1 billion Evercare Health Fund, managed by TPG Capital and The Rise Fund and comprised of the world's leading impact investors and global development finance institutions. She was a core part of the investment leadership team responsible for scaling Evercare from inception to a global platform highlighted as one of the top 50 leaders that will “come to define the world of tomorrow”
- Ifeooluwa Dare Johnson
Ifeoluwa Dare-Johnson is the Founder/CEO at Healthtracka, a health tech company making medical diagnostics accessible and affordable with at-home lab testing and virtual consultations. Ifeoluwa wants to reverse the rise in non-communicable diseases in Africa by offering people access to on-demand health tests such as STD tests, wellness tests, hormonal tests and lots more. Healthtracka recently launched an at-home HPV self-sampling kit that allows women to screen for cervical cancer in a painless, private and easy manner. Ifeoluwa is a scientist turned business owner with over 10 years of experience in both the clinical and business sides of healthcare. Ifeoluwa is one of the few female founders from Africa that has gotten into Techstars- the global accelerator program, she is also a recipient of the Google for Black Founders Fund. She was nominated as one of the top 3 Bold women in Nigeria by Veuve Cliquot in 2022.Ifeoluwa believes strongly that women already have all it takes to create, sustain, and scale businesses.
- Melanie Okuneye
Melanie is co-founder of Akoma Health, which improves access to culturally conscious and high-quality mental healthcare for Africans via tele-therapy. Melanie is passionate about enabling others to fulfil their potential, thus working with individuals to be their best selves and thus impactful in their communities. Most recently, Melanie worked at Bain creating solutions for Entertainment clients, including a high-growth video gaming company and the largest global music label. Prior to this, Melanie was a Vice President level financial advisor, serving the needs of global family offices and ultra-high net worth individuals. At Goldman, Melanie served as a member of the PWM Advisory Council that seeks to narrow the gender and ethnic investing gap. She worked with Goldman Sachs both in London and New York. Melanie received her MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business and undergraduate degree in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from the University of York in the UK. In line with her passion for enabling others to fulfil their potential, Melanie invests in founders, mentors' young black women towards financial literacy and those seeking careers in Finance. In her free time, Melanie enjoys singing, producing music, travelling and playing sports.
- Jennie Nwokoye
Jennie Nwokoye is a seasoned systems engineer and a visionary entrepreneur. With over 8 years of experience working at major tech companies, management consulting firms, and the US Federal Government, Jennie brings a wealth of technical knowledge and business acumen to the table. Holding a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science and a Minor in Anthropology from the University of South Florida, a Master of Forensic Science from Stevenson University, and a Master of Science in Systems Engineering from Georgetown University, Jennie has a diverse educational background. In 2000, Jennie relocated to Nigeria with her family, where she encountered the disparities in access to primary healthcare services. Driven by her passion for social impact, Jennie founded Clafiya, a digital primary healthcare service that connects individuals and businesses to health practitioners to provide convenient, quality, and affordable, on-demand, in-person primary care from their mobile phones. Her dedication to improving healthcare access led her to enroll in Georgetown University's Systems Engineering Management Master's Program, where she incubated Clafiya and turned her vision into a reality. As an entrepreneur and mentor, Jennie is committed to supporting young entrepreneurs in developing solutions to address some of society's toughest issues. In Washington DC, where she resides, Jennie has established herself as a leader in capacity building and youth development, helping young and minority entrepreneurs with business case and plan development, pitch competition preparation, and fundraising advisory. As a result, Jennie has helped over a dozen young entrepreneurs in the National Capital area raise over $200,000 in the past two years.