Sandie Okoro Makes History

Sandie Okoro Makes History as First Female Chancellor of England’s University of Birmingham

The University of Birmingham has appointed Sandie Okoro as its eighth Chancellor, marking a historic milestone. Okoro, a distinguished lawyer and equality advocate, becomes the first woman to hold this prestigious position at the institution.

Trailblazing Appointment: Breaking Barriers in Higher Education

Sandie Okoro’s appointment as Chancellor represents a significant breakthrough for diversity in academia. The 60-year-old succeeds Lord Bilimoria, who served for a decade.

Okoro, a University of Birmingham alumna, expressed her honor at the appointment. She views it as an opportunity to give back to her alma mater.

A Legacy of Excellence: Okoro’s Professional Achievements

Prior to this role, Okoro made history as the first Black woman to serve as senior VP and general counsel for the World Bank Group. Her responsibilities included advising on legal matters and overseeing compliance.

Okoro’s impressive career also includes a stint as Global General Counsel for HSBC Global Asset Management. She received an honorary doctorate from City University of London in 2014.

From South London to Global Leadership

Okoro attributes her success to her background as a Black woman from South London. She told the Financial Times, “You really don’t mess with South London girls and Black South London girls in particular.”

Her experiences have shaped her perspective on racism and inequality. Okoro has used her positions to challenge injustice and promote diversity.

A Family Tradition: Three Generations at Birmingham

Okoro’s connection to the University of Birmingham spans three generations. Her mother, herself, and her son all studied at the institution.

This deep-rooted connection fuels Okoro’s commitment to the university’s mission. She praised its focus on impactful research and creating an inclusive environment for minority students.

Looking Ahead: Okoro’s Vision for the University

As Chancellor, Okoro aims to contribute to the university’s ongoing progress. She expressed excitement about the opportunity to support educational excellence and inclusivity.

Vice Chancellor Adam Tickell welcomed Okoro’s appointment, highlighting her role as an inspirational trailblazer. He emphasized the university’s commitment to championing equality, diversity, and inclusion.