A Nigerian-Canadian based businessman/ International trade expert, Kenneth Oguzie was recently honoured as one of the most inspiring immigrants in Eastern Canada (Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island provinces), for his contributions to the region, and also actively supporting immigrants from different parts of the world to settle in Canada.
Kenneth has been recognized in the past by different groups in Nova Scotia as a dynamic and supportive individual. He has won multiple awards in the past from community organizations, private sector and Non-Governmental players for his diverse contributions, community impact and professional achievement.
Ken who considers himself a global citizen having lived in Asia, Europe, North America, and Africa, stated that his international experience has helped shape his cross-culture understanding, international business thinking, and diverse stakeholder management. As the CEO of an international business organisation focused on trade, investment, project financing and business facilitation between Canada and Africa, he believes that having a global perspective in making business decisions is imperative for organizational sustainable growth and expansion.
In his award acceptance speech, Ken stated that though Canada is not perfect, it is still a blessed and welcoming country that is leading in diversity and inclusion, and has created a home for new immigrants from different parts of the world. He also expressed his appreciation to all stakeholders, Canadians and fellow immigrants that have worked collectively to support immigrants in their settlement in Canada.
“I am extremely honoured to be receiving such an important award and i am grateful for the recognition that i have received from my work. Though, I have faced a variety of challenges in my experience as an immigrant having lived in five different countries across four continents, I have also been given different learning and growth opportunities. I have been lucky to meet wonderful and great minded immigrants and amazing Canadians”.
A masters graduate of social policy and development from the London school of economics, he is presently the CEO of Africa Canada trade and investment venture (@activafr), an organization which promotes international trade and business between Canada and west Africa, both within private sector as well as creating public sector collaborations.
He is also a senior diversity consultant with the Nova Scotia Public Service Commission and the vice president of the Development of Ocean technical capacity with African nations (@dotcanafrica)- a Canada-west Africa not for profit initiative.
He is a prominent member of the Nigerian community and a recent recipient of the distinguished Nigerian in Nova Scotia award for his contribution to the Nigerian, as well as the west African community. Ken’s organization ACTIV in partnership with NSBI hosted the first ever west Africa-Nova Scotia trade and business summit in 2019. This landmark event was attended by multiple businesses from West Africa and Canada in including government officials from both regions and key players in the international trade industry.
Ken has supported numerous immigrants from across the world in settling in Nova Scotia as well as other provinces across Maritime Canada, both formally in his previous employment specialist role with the immigrant services association of Nova Scotia Canada and informally through community connections and as a leader in the community.
Founder of my East Coast Experience, Ifeanyi Emesih congratulated all the winners at the event. He stated that the most inspiring immigrant initiative was created to celebrate the contributions of their rich multicultural traditions that make the communities great.
“The east coast and the maritime in particular are often the gateway to Canada for so many of the immigrants arriving. Many immigrants receive a warm welcome when they arrive and decide to put their roots down in Canada. The ceremony honors all the various ways these heroes give back to the community that have opened their arms to them and allowed them to create a new home”, he said.
He added that the gala night is also a celebration of optimism because immigrants are looking forward to the promise of 2021.
“Every winner has created a positive impact in their various communities, inspired and motivate others to push for a fresh start in 2021 and years to come. We will always continue to develop new ways to celebrate diversity in our economy such as the Mosaic film festival of arts and culture.”
The virtual event was graced by the Regional President of RBC bank, Christopher Ronald, Member of Parliament, Andy Fillmore, the Minister of Immigration, Labour and Advanced Education and Acadian Affairs and Francophonie, Honorable Lena Diab, the President and CEO of the Halifax Chambers of Commerce, Patrick Sullivan and other prominent individuals who were also present at the event