The 2017 Women in Energy Awards and Conference was convened and organized by Brands and Beyond Ltd. It was held on 13th and 14th December, 2017 at Strathmore University. The force behind Women in Energy Awards and Conference is James Ngomeli.
In 2009 Mr. Ngomeli became the Secretariat for the Kenya Power & Lighting Company restructuring. Over the course of the reorganization, the gender gap at Kenya Power became very apparent. Compelled to build gender diversity and disrupt the status quo, Mr. Ngomeli began collaborating with colleagues in the public and private sectors and in 2016 the first Women in Energy Awards and Conference was successfully convened. The theme of the 2017 Women in Energy Awards and Conference was Seizing the Opportunity. The awards and conference inspired, recognized and rewarded women in the energy sector.
James Ngomeli is the Chair of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a Director at the Kenya Private Sector Alliance KEPSA Energy Sector Board. He is a veteran marketer with 15 years of experience.
Overwhelming support for the 2017 Women in Energy Awards and Conference came from Brands and Beyond Ltd, Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, Strathmore University, Standard Media Group, Energia, Energy Regulatory Commission ERC, Galana Oil Kenya, Geothermal Development Company GDC, KenGen, Kenya Nuclear Electricity Board KNEB, Kenya Power, KEPSA, Kenya Women Microfinance Bank KWFT, Kenyatta University, Resolutions Insurance, Tullow Oil and Vivo Energy.
Women in Energy Awards and Conference is very proud that two of the 2016 awardees went on to receive international recognition. Hellen Odegi, 2016 winner of the Community Leadership Award, scooped the 2017 Innovator of Year Award Sub Saharan Africa from the Association of Energy Engineers. The Queen of England recognized Chebet Lesan, 2016 Entrepreneurship Award recipient, with the Queen’s Young Leaders Global Award in London, 2017.
In his opening remarks, Mr. Ngomeli stated his goal for the 2017 Women in Energy Awards and Conference is to position participants to package themselves, identify business opportunities and learn from leaders. In her conference opening remarks, Makueni County First Lady and Chair of the County First Ladies Association, H.E. Nazi Kivutha called on stakeholders to identify and implement small-scale projects that make a positive impact to women and children at the grassroots level. The Ministry of Energy, represented by Paul Mbuthi affirmed the goal of the 2017 Women in Energy Awards and Conference is to share experiences with the aim of reducing the gender gap. The former chairman of the Petroleum Institute of East Africa, Powell Maimba shared his dream that the 2017 Women in Energy Awards and Conference participants would access financing and business ideas and employ more people.