Charlotte Ashamu is a consultant at IPCH leading the development of the Directors’ Forum, a new initiative working with leaders of Africa’s museums and cultural institutions. Charlotte is a global executive with a 20-year career in international and public affairs. Prior to Yale, she served as the Associate Director of Advancement and External Affairs at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. Previously, she was a Senior Advisor at the African Development Bank, the largest development finance institution on the African continent. In addition, Charlotte served in leadership roles at the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector arm of the World Bank, where she managed programs in over 15 countries to foster the growth of small businesses in the retail, tourism, manufacturing and service industries. Charlotte spent the earlier part of her career as an international trade specialist at the Whitaker Group and Abt Associates in Washington, DC.
A graduate of the Paris Fashion Institute, Charlotte has an extensive portfolio of projects in curating and exhibiting contemporary African design, and has served as a guest lecturer at the University of Johannesburg’s Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture. Charlotte is the founder of a social venture, Dabira, which supports young creative entrepreneurs in Africa. She currently serves on the advisory council of the Madeleine Korbel Albright Institute for Global Affairs and on the boards of several non-profit organizations. She is the recipient of the Mo Ibrahim Leadership Fellowship awarded annually by billionaire philanthropist, Mo Ibrahim. Charlotte holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Africana Studies from Wellesley College and a Master’s of International Affairs from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.