Peter is a former British High Commissioner to Ghana, based in Accra, from 2011 to 2014 and is currently the Chief Operating Officer for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office He also served as non-resident Ambassador to Togo and Burkina Faso from 2011 to 2014. From 2009 to 2011 he was Director for Migration at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Prior to becoming Chief Operating Officer, Peter was Director for Defence and International Security at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office from 2014 to 2017.
Peter joined the British Diplomatic Service in 1985 and has served as EU, Economic and Trade Counsellor at the British Embassy in Rome. His earlier overseas postings were as First Secretary, Politico-Military Affairs, Bonn and Second/First Secretary, UK Delegation to conventional arms control negotiations in Vienna. His FCO posts in London have included a range of political and other roles. Prior to joining the FCO, Peter worked for IBM UK Ltd.
John Carmichael was educated at the Ridge Church School in Accra, Clifton College, Bristol and Oriel College, Oxford. His family has had connections with Ghana since World War II when his father first arrived on the Gold Coast with the Royal Air Force. In 1988, John followed in his father’s footsteps – and those of HRH the Prince of Wales – by being made an Honorary Chief.
John had worked extensively on film and television productions between Ghana and the United Kingdom and was Honorary Producer-in-Residence at the Ghana Film Industry Corporation. He was appointed International Co-coordinator for the Accra Centennial celebrations and went on to serve as Millennium Commissioner for Ghana, responsible for establishing the Meridian twinning link and development partnership between Greenwich and Ghana..
Jon Benjamin served as the High Commissioner to Ghana in the year 2014 to 2017. He is currently the Director of the Foreign Office Diplomatic Academy. Jon joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1986. He has previously served in New York (2005-2008), Washington (2005), Ankara (1996-1999), and Jakarta (1988-1991).
He has also held several positions in the FCO: Policy Officer for Burma and Laos (1986-1987); Lead Policy Officer for Central Asia and Caucasus (1992-1993); Chief of Staff to FCO Minister responsible for EU and Latin America (1993-1995); Head of Zimbabwe Emergency Unit (2000); Deputy Head of Drugs and International Crime Department (2000-2002); Head of Human Rights Policy Department (2002-2005). Jon has a degree in Languages (German and Swedish) and International Relations, and a strong background in human rights.
Mr. Steven Gray is Director of Wardour Africa and is currently the representative for UK Export Finance in West Africa based in Ghana. Mr. Gray has worked in Africa and the Middle East for the past 29 years in a variety of sectors including construction, mining, logistics, and infrastructure development.
He is Vice Chairman of the UK Ghana Chamber of Commerce and is a member of the Advisory Board of GUBA and Black Star International Film Festival. Mr. Gray holds an MBA from Heriot-Watt University and, in his spare time, is undertaking a doctorate to research the market failures during the project preparation phase of infrastructure projects in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Jonathan is currently CEO of the Business Council for Western and Southern Africa which allows occasional travel to Ghana. Born in Kisumu, Kenya, he spent the holidays between 1969 and 1971 in Ghana when his father was attached to the High Commission.
After completing a Geography degree at The University of Nottingham, he served 35 years in Army with staff and operational postings throughout the world but notably in Germany, Hong Kong, Australia, Bosnia, Kuwait, The Sultanate of Oman and culminating in 2004 in Ghana as the Defence Adviser to the British High Commissioner. He was also responsible for Togo and Cote d’Ivoire whilst travelling extensively through West Africa..
George Twumasi is the visionary force behind the ABN Holdings Limited (ABN) with the goal to create a viable African Satellite Broadcasting Network, straddling both DTH and DTT. ABN’s aim is to establish a commercially viable, turnkey digital ecosystem that will generate VAS revenues worth billions of dollars per annum.
ABN is committed to building an inspiring commercial vehicle via which a unique cultural content generation and an innovative DTH/DTT content distribution model can be achieved. The intent is to establish a compelling business case and defensible revenue model based on, which a rich media African content hub is established. ABN is currently working towards the development of a viable cloud solution based commercial framework that will drive the re-aggregation and monetization of content, initially spanning eighteen African countries
For some, sports is a competitive career. For others it’s a likeable pastime. But for Rodney Hinds, currently the Sports & Features Editor of The Voice Newspaper, sports brings cohesion, pride and hope to millions of people worldwide. In 1999 Rodney was co-author of ‘Black Pearls – an A-Z of Black Footballers in the English Game’. In recent times Rodney has penned his second book ‘Black Lions – The Story of Black Footballers in England.’
His contribution to sports journalism was recognized when he won the Black Plus+ ‘Best Print Journalist’ and the Victoria Mutual ‘Services to Cricket’ awards. Having launched his television career on BBC Breakfast Time, Rodney has also contributed and appeared on various sporting documentaries ‘Black Flash – A Century of Black footballers in Britain’ (BBC3), ‘Daley Thompson’ (BBC2) and ‘Mike Tyson’ (C4).
Dr. Doirean Wilson is an HRM Senior Lecturer at Middlesex University Business School London. She specializes in Community Engagement and Diversity Practice and is a member of the university’s Leadership, Work & Organizations Academic department.
Doirean holds a doctorate in Professional Practice (D.Prof Practice), a Master Degree in HRM, and a Post Graduate Certificate in Further Education (PG Cert Ed FE). She is a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures & Commerce (FRSA), Senior Fellow Higher Education Academy (SFHEA), a Fellow of the European Institute of Spirituality in Economics and Society (SPES) Institute, and a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (FCIPD). Doirean who is reputedly the first female and person of color to lead an Executive MBA in the UK has published works in a range of diverse topics such as, equality & Inclusion, cross-cultural team-working, and gender disparity. She is also Chair of the university’s Race Religion and Beliefs Forum (MURRB).
Ms. Cynthia Quarcoo is a legal practitioner with extensive experience as a Corporate and Finance lawyer in Ghana and the United Kingdom. She is the Founder and Managing Partner of CQ Legal and Consulting, where she currently heads the Banking and finance, Energy/Power, and Infrastructure Practices.
Cynthia has over 15 years’ experience representing institutional clients. She is an experienced corporate/commercial and finance lawyer with specialization in the energy, financial and infrastructure sectors. An economics and business graduate, Cynthia's early career as an Analyst at PriceWaterHouse Coopers has strengthened her ability to provide clients with commercially sound legal advice.
Until recently, Cynthia worked as a Senior Associate in the Banking and Finance Practice of International law firm, Fasken Martineau LLP in London and as a Consultant Senior Lawyer in the International Finance and Corporate department of Radix Legal & Consulting in London where she provided advice on general debt, project, development and asset finance transactions.
She is also founder of Africa 1 Media, a multi-functioning professional services firm with a unique focus on providing business and legal counsel. Africa 1 Media supports creatives in their efforts to advance their talent whilst paying close attention to national and international legal frameworks and protocols which guard and regulate their industries and sectors. Africa 1 Media was specifically established to help realize the dreams and ambitions of talented and driven aspiring Africans. The aim of Africa 1 Media is to build the commercial value of its clients businesses to help them reach the widest audience for the highest rewards. She also sits on the boards of CENIT Energy and Ghana India Trade Advisory Centre.
Eric is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Hamstrings. Eric was born in Brooklyn, NY to a Guinean father (West Africa) and an American mother. He spent 20 years growing up in poor rural Guinea, going to primary and secondary school in Fria and then Conakry, the capital.
Eric deeply understands that burning desire to make a difference, when you are so far away from loved ones, and the limitations of currently available investment options that really make an impact and are profitable. That understanding has led to Homestrings – a contraction of Homesick and Heartstrings. Eric is also currently the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GRAVITAS Capital Advisors, Inc..
Grow, Unite, Build, Africa (GUBA) Awards is a non-profit Pan-African, Business and Innovation Awards instituted to seeks to reward, celebrate excellence and innovation of African individuals and organisations in the diaspora and back home, that work towards the advancement, empowerment and progression of the African community in the Diaspora.