Since the era of slavery and colonialism, Black people have been made to feel and believe that we are second-class human beings, but not anymore. More and more men and women of color are awakening to realize the potential that lies within them. The latest evidence can be found in the growing number of distinguished Black CEO’s running multi-billion dollar, multinational companies, including these 10 that you should get to know.
Ursula Burns (Xerox)
Born in 1958, native New Yorker Ursula M. Burns has been the CEO of Xerox since 2009. She is also the first Black American woman to head a Fortune 500 company. In 2014, Forbes rated her as the 22nd most powerful woman in the world. Her current salary is $18.7 million per year.
Arnold W. Donald (Carnival Corporation & PLC)
Arnold W. Donald was born in 1955 in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he graduated from St. Augustine High School before going across the country to earn his degree at Carleton College in Minnesota. In 2013, he became President and CEO of the world’s biggest cruise and travel provider Carnival Corporation & plc in 2013. Now a prominent Black American businessman, he is estimated to earn $9.4 million every year.
Kenneth Frazier (Merck & Co.)
Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 61-year-old Kenneth Frazier has been the Chief Executive Officer of Merck & Co. – one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies – since 2011. Before becoming CEO, Frazier served Merck in various capacities including general senior counsel, executive vice-president and president. At the moment, he earns $21.4 million per year.
Kenneth Chenault (American Express)
Born in Mineola, New York, 65-year-old Kenneth Chenault is a famous Black American business executive who has been the CEO of American Express since 2001. A graduate of Harvard Law School and Bowdoin College, he is also the third Black American CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Chenault earns $50.2 million per year.
Rodney O’Neal (Delphi Automotive)
Born in 1954 in Dayton, Ohio, Rodney O’Neal’s talent in business and engineering has earned him a place in the Automotive Hall of Fame. Since becoming President and CEO of Delphi Automotive in 2007, he has brought the company back from bankruptcy to become an award-winning developer of cutting-edge automobile technology such as self-driving cars. O’Neal is estimated to earn $3.5 million per year.
Alhaji Aliko Dangote (Dangote Group)
59-year-old Alhaji Aliko Dangote is a self-made billionaire from Nigeria’s Kano state. His company, the Dangote Group, deals in flour, sugar, cement, and other commodities with operations in Nigeria and several countries across Africa. Estimated to have a net worth over $15 billion, many know him as Africa’s wealthiest man; he also ranks 51st on Forbes’ 2016 list of the world’s billionaires.
Bob Collymore (Safaricom)
Born in the United Kingdom, 58-year-old Bob Collymore is the Chief Executive Officer of Safaricom Ltd, one of the largest telecom companies in Kenya. Before his appointment as CEO in 2010, Collymore worked as the governance director and corporate affairs officer of Vodafone Africa. Currently, he earns $10 million per year.
Patrice Motsepe (African Rainbow Minerals)
Patrice Motsepe was born in 1962 in Johannesburg’s most well-known township, Soweto. A graduate of the Universities of Swaziland and Witwatersrand, Motsepe is the owner and CEO of African Rainbow Minerals, one of South Africa’s largest mining companies. He was named South Africa’s richest man in 2012 and has a net worth of approximately $2.4 billion.
Phuti Mahanyele (Sigma Capital)
At age 45, Phuti Mahanyele is one of South Africa’s most celebrated businesswomen, having won awards from Forbes, Africa Investors, and Rutgers University among others. After eleven years as CEO of Shanduka Group – a major South African firm with investments in food and beverage, property, energy, and telecommunications across six African nations – she stepped down last year to start her own investment holdings company, Sigma Capital. Although her earnings or net worth are not public knowledge, Mahanyele boasted to Destiny Magazine: “I’ve funded 100% of the resources we [Sigma] require now.”
Divine Ndhlukula (Securico)
Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Divine Ndhlukula runs one of the largest security companies in Zimbabwe. Her company, Securico, was the first in the country to acquire ISO certification. Her net worth is estimated at $13 million.
Source: Face2Face Africa