Ebele OKOBI is Facebook’s Director of Public Policies for Africa since 2014. In charge of Facebook’s political agenda in Africa, she is the link between African governments, civil society, influencers and key decision-makers in the Continent, and Mark Zuckerberg’s company.
The 43 years old lady previously worked at Yahoo! where she founded the legal direction of the human rights division of the company. Her mission was to lead efforts in the promotion of privacy and free expression on the Internet. Prior to joining Yahoo! She worked as a corporate securities and mergers & acquisitions lawyer at David Polk & Wardwell in New York, Paris and London. She also worked as an attorney fellow at Consumers Union in San Francisco, and as the Director of Advisory Services at Catalyst (a non-profit with the mission of advancing women in business in San Jose and Amsterdam). A pretty impressive professional background for someone who started her studies in the field of psychology, before getting her law degree from Columbia Law School and an MBA from HEC-Paris.
The outstanding job she accomplished at Yahoo! coupled with her consistent efficient advocacy and passion for the defense of freedom of speech got her to where she is currently at Facebook. Working from her London’s office, she leads a team of brilliant Africans concerned about the creation of opportunities across the African Continent. Together, they work with Governments, policymakers, and influencers to drive internet connectivity, and ensure that the internet enables positive and productive social transformations. It is in this context that, in 2016 when the Internet connection was cut in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in the context of political tensions, she made the trip to Kinshasa to convince local authorities to restore Internet access. She is also behind Facebook’s latest major initiatives in the Continent that were launched during Mark Zuckerberg’s first visit to Sub-Saharan Africa in 2016.
Ebele OKOBI is a first generation Nigerian-American born in San Francisco, yet with deep roots in Africa and a strong passion for Africa’s prosperity through female empowerment and the massive contribution of African youth.