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Ms. Sophia Bekele Eshete is a widely acknowledged business leader, international entrepreneur, corporate governance expert, global policy advisor, public engagement specialist, activist and philanthropist, whose wide-ranging experience spans both the public & private sectors.
Bekele is considered a global technology and internet authority. She was named one of the “Top 20 Inspirational African Diaspora Professional Women in Europe” by ADIPWE in 2014, and was also recognized as one of the top leading women in Africa’s ICT sector and African Women to Watch by Bloomberg TV and one of the “50 African Trailblazers – a Future Made in Africa” by NewAfrican Magazine in 2013. She is a frequently published writer & commentator on various themes in technology, Internet governance, business and cyber-security. She is invited to speak at many international conferences on her work and has given keynote speeches and moderated various panels. Bekele has also served on different senior-level policy advisory & leadership boards at national and international levels where her work has made positive impacts on the implementation of key public policies.
Ms. Bekele holds an MBA in Management Information Systems (MIS) from Golden Gate University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Analysis & Computer Systems (BACS) from San Francisco State University. She holds various professional certifications of competency in the fields of IT & Security Auditing, Control Systems, Governance of Enterprise Systems and Infrastructures such as CISA, CCS, and CGEIT.
Early in her career, as a Corporate Executive, Bekele achieved a successful track record working for different Fortune 500 Companies in the field of Business & IT, & Systems Security Auditing and Risk Management & Enterprise systems. She has continued to draw on this background in her current professional engagements.
As an entrepreneur, Bekele has founded and run various international start-ups, implementing successful projects as well as launching companies into new markets. Ms. Bekele is currently the Founder and Executive Director of DotConnectAfrica (DCA) Group, an organization that she set up in Africa for Internet Policy public engagement, ICT knowledge generation & management, Internet domain registry services, new media and gender-focused women & youth empowerment social entrepreneurship programs in Africa. Bekele organized and led the wildly acclaimed & successful 6-year Yes2DotAfrica multi-lingual global awareness campaign for the Africa Internet domain name.
Ms. Bekele is vastly specialized in the Internet governance terrain where she has accomplished impactful work on internet policy and governance, and in recent years, has been performing high-level public engagements and policy advocacy at the level of US Congress and the African private sector. She is a strong advocate of accountability and transparency improvements in all facets of her engagements & holding public authorities to such high standards
She is also the Founder/CEO of CBS International, a California-based company that is in the business of strategic technology integration to emerging economies & also provides corporate governance and communication services to US-based clients. Bekele is the Chief Convener of the Internet Business Council for Africa (IBCA), an industry group that represents the African private sector in Global Internet Governance & ICT matters & Chairwoman of GEDA Investment Group.
Bekele has traveled to over 140 countries and is currently working on a book on her business experiences in Africa. Her full bio is available at www.sophiabekele.com.