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Black History Month voices

Author: ICAEW

Published: 05 Oct 2021

ICAEW is proudly marking Black History Month, which takes place every October in the United Kingdom. The theme for 2021 is “Proud to be”: proud to be Black, proud to be me. We offer a range of video content on this theme.

Why is it important to attract, develop and engage diverse talent into the accountancy profession?

Watch Onyekachukwu Obi share his insights

Obi is a Chartered Accountant and MBA from Imperial College who has spent the last 8 years working with businesses on strategic initiatives including financings and M&A activities. At PwC, he worked in the Banking and Capital team, advising the largest financial institutions in the UK before moving to the M&A Advisory team to execute global M&A transactions.

Post PwC, Obi joined Shawbrook Bank's Corporate Strategy team to support the bank's growth phase following its acquisition by Private Equity. Obi left Shawbrook Bank to complete his MBA after which he joined Kreos Capital, the leading venture debt fund, to provide growth capital to young technology enabled companies. He is currently a Sherpa at Tenzing Private Equity and leads the Finance Strategy team at The Mothership, a multichannel ecommerce aggregator.

Onyekachukwu Obi

What are the merits and benefits to be gained by leaders from reverse mentoring?

Watch Aaron Townsend and Alison Ring discuss their insights

Aaron Townsend

Aaron is the Head of FP&A at Zego, an insurtech company providing commercial motor insurance. He looks after budgeting/forecasting, fundraising and financial strategy. Previously he was at Habito, an online mortgage broker and lender as Head of Finance, where he built out the finance function and supported with management reporting, fundraising, FP&A and tax. Laterally at Albion Capital, a venture capital house with over £1bn under management, he studied to become a chartered accountant and held various roles over the seven years, with his most recent role as Finance Manager, where he managed two venture capital trusts and assisted with their fundraising.

He currently sits on the ICAEW Learning and Development board which amongst many things looks after the development of the ACA. He studied Biomedical Sciences at The University of Manchester. 

Alison Ring

Alison joined ICAEW in 2020 and is the Director of the Public Sector team, which supports members working in and with the public sector to deliver public priorities and sustainable public finances. ICAEW engages with policy makers, public servants and others to promote the need for effective financial management, audit and assurance, financial reporting and governance and ethics across the public sector to ensure public money is spent wisely.

After completing a law degree and qualifying with a medium-sized accountancy firm, she worked in practice for several years before joining HMRC in 1994. She spent 25 years there where she held the post of Commissioners’ Advisory Accountant.

What role can accountants play in highlighting the link between racial and environmental justice?

Watch Precious Sithole share her insights

Precious Sithole is the founder and Chief Executive of Social Practice ENT – a not-for-profit accounting and consultancy social enterprise that is built on social justice principles. 

Precious began her career working as an external auditor in Birmingham where she qualified as a chartered accountant. As part of the external audit team, she worked with a range of clients including charities, multi-academy trusts, housing associations and large corporations with group income over £500m. She then subsequently went on to work as an accounting and strategic consultant in London, before forming Social Practice ENT.

In addition to being a chartered accountant, Precious holds a Master’s degree in Charity Management and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. She is passionate about inclusive governance, and through Social Practice ENT, Precious helps Civil Society Organisations to develop inclusive policies and board cultures. She also oversees the Social Practice Academy’s flagship Beyond Suffrage trustee training programme.

Precious also serves as a Trustee on the Board of the Trust For London, and is a member of Trust’s Finance and Resources committee.


Precious Sithole