Funmi Iyanda: One Of The Most Influential Women In Nigeria

Olufunmilola Aduke Iyanda also known as Funmi Iyanda, is an award-winning broadcaster, journalist, columnist and blogger.

Early life

Olufunmilola Aduke Iyanda was born on the 27th of July 1971. Iyanda attended Herbert Macaulay School in Lagos, Nigeria, and then went to the International School Ibadan and University of Ibadan, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geography.

Fresh out of university Funmi explored her deep passion for sports, entering the world of sports journalism. One of the few Nigerian female sports journalists, she covered the 1999 female Football World Cup, the All Africa Games in Zimbabwe, as well as the 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games in Sydney and Athens.

She was an active member of the Nigerian Football Association between 1995 and 2003. She got pregnant for Segun Odegbami and she has a beautiful daughter.

Personal life

An innovator in her sphere Funmi has won tremendous recognition for her work in the media and for her humanitarian and philanthropic interventions. She is an African Leadership Institute Tutu Fellow and a participant of the ASPEN Institute’s Forum for Communications and Society.

In 2012, she was honoured by the Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola, for her commitment to gender advocacy as she returned from a five-day UN advocacy trek up Mount Kilimajaro.

The climb was organised by the UN to raise global awareness on its campaign to End Violence against Women and Girls and brought together climbers from more than 32 African countries in a historic advocacy journey up Mount Kilimanjaro.

Funmi Iyanda joined South African rock band the Parlotones, South African actress Rosie Motene, human rights lawyer, Ann Njogu, Congolese singer Barbara Kanam, and many African women and men who play an active role in their countries on the gruelling trek up Kilimanjaro. The climbers arrived at Africa’s highest summit on International Women’s Day, 8 March 2012, and displayed their African national flags.

Funmi serves on the Board of Farafina Trust and Positive Impact Youth Network. She was at the forefront of the Occupy Nigeria series of protests in January 2012. The protests were to resist the implementation of the government’s fuel subsidy removal policy.

In her spare time Funmi reads voraciously, watches movies and supports her favourite football team, Chelsea FC.


She produced and hosted Nigeria’s popular and authoritative talk show New Dawn with Funmi, which aired on the national network for over eight years.

Funmi is the CEO of Ignite Media, a content-driven media organisation operating out of Lagos. In 2011, she was honoured as a Young Global Leader (YGL) by the World Economic ForumIn and was recently named one of Forbes 20 Youngest Power Women in Africa


Written by nigeriahow

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