Areas of Expertise
Caroline Armstrong-Ogwapit’s expertise lies in financial services with a focus on property financing. Her experience in this space traverses the banking industry and the provision of housing within the public sector. She also brings a wealth of experience in project management and change management providing an ability to not only innovate and problem solve, but to successfully implement. She sees things through a solution-driven lens and focuses on the beneficiary impact as she delivers. She has often been not only the youngest, but also often the only woman, in many settings and has been able to gracefully overcome the biases that those two elements created and is proud of the career she has created. She has an ability to rise above gender bias yet to use the innate gifts her gender gives her to create a collaborative approach and achieve the desired outcomes. She believes that she should make the path of others easier than the one she walked herself, and is keen to share her experience and knowledge to create access to opportunities, particularly for women.
Her 25-year career spans two continents, five institutions, local and multinational companies, both the public and private sector, and the consultancy space. She started her career as an intern while still in university, and through sheer hard work steadily rose through the ranks achieving
C-suite level roles as well as various non-executive Board seats. Voted as one of Kenya’s Top 40 Under 40 women, she has had many firsts and has been responsible for half of the sub-Saharan Africa region, and for teams ranging from 4 people to over 430 people across multiple countries. Her experience covers financial services, property development, aviation, and corporate social investment work.
She has unique 360-degree experience having held key roles within the leadership team and holding board seats at the same time. Having started her career at the bottom and having risen to the top leadership levels, she has the unique ability to think strategically yet delve into the detail and to be focused yet to see different perspectives. Her leadership skills, strategic thinking and problem-solving ability enable her to translate broad concepts into specific actions that will have the greatest and most long-term impact.
In addition to her role as an NFNV Trustee, she serves as a Non-Executive Director on the following boards:-
Kenya Airways (KQ) where she remains the youngest, yet longest serving, director after having been recently re-elected to serve her third term. She chairs the Board’s Human Resources Committee (HRC), which, among others, is responsible for all leadership recruitments and importantly the union engagements, which has meant involvement in the resolution of various difficult situations.
JamboJet is a low-cost carrier operating within the East African region and holds the largest domestic market share. Caroline has the privilege of being KQ’s chosen representative on the board in order to ensure that objectives and strategies are aligned whilst optimizing efficacy of resources and capacity.
National Housing Corporation is a key player in the delivery of the country’s Affordable Housing Programme a key pillar in the nation’s Big 4 Agenda. She chairs the Board’s Finance, Strategy & Business Development Committee that is responsible for driving the strategic, funding and revenue generating activities and ensuring that the overarching vision of Housing the Nation is lived.
AIB Axys Africa, a stock brokerage, was formed in June 2020 after the merger of AIB Capital and Apex Africa and is majority owned by the Axys Group based out of Mauritius. She is honored to serve as the first ever woman Chairperson in the history of both companies. The company is focused on utilizing technology to enable access to the capital markets, especially for the youth as they begin their wealth creation journeys.
In addition to the above roles, Caroline serves on the Advisory Board of The Room. The Room is a newly-formed member of the African Leadership Group, an organization started by Fred Swaniker, the key founder on a mission to create 3 million African leaders and to introduce African talent to the world and to new opportunities.
Having often been the only woman at the table and having worked hard to achieve success in male dominated industries, she knows the obstacles many women face, and even worse, the limitations they place on themselves. She is a believer that success can be bred through collaboration not competition; it is WE thinking not US vs THEM thinking that truly creates lasting change and benefit.