We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2023 Cranfield School of Management Alumni Awards.
The School of Management Alumni Awards recognise and celebrate the outstanding achievements of the School's alumni and highlight the variety of ways they are making a transformative impact on their organisations, industries and communities, globally. Each year the winners serve as role models to other alumni, students, and potential students: from internationally respected leaders and entrepreneurs driving innovation, to those who go above and beyond to embody the Cranfield Community spirit and keep our alumni network connected.
The annual awards recognise and honour alumni in four categories: Distinguished Alumni Award, Entrepreneur Alumni Award, Excellence in Achievement Award for Recent Graduates, and the Alumni Service Award.
Meet the 2023 Distinguished Alumni Award Winner
Chris Ashton (MBA 1996)
CEO and Managing Director, Worley
Chris Ashton is the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Worley, a leading global provider of professional project and asset services operating in nearly 50 countries worldwide through a diverse workforce of over 53,000 professional, consulting, engineering, project management, and field-based people.
After being in the role of Chief Operating Officer since 2018, and appointed to CEO in February 2020, Chris’ leadership is marked by an acceleration of the company’s transformation strategy – putting sustainability, passion, skills, and strongly held values and beliefs at the centre of some of the biggest challenges on the planet.
Leading the brightest minds with the best technology, Chris is a passionate advocate for STEM learning and believes the engineers of the future have a crucial role in developing game-changing technologies and solutions, supporting Worley’s purpose of delivering a more sustainable world. He is inspired to see people succeed, develop and grow to their full potential, motivated by knowing what they do makes a real difference.
Chris holds a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering degree with honors from the University of Sunderland and a Master of Business Administration degree from Cranfield School of Management. He has completed the Executive Management Program at Harvard Business School and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Chris said: “My work journey began 40 years ago. These years have passed by more quickly than I can comprehend, and I am blessed to have been influenced, shaped, led, supported - and I dare say cajoled - by many incredible people to whom I’m grateful. In their own way, they helped get me to where I am and become who I am today. To be recognised with the Distinguished Alumni Award came as a complete surprise. It's an honour to be considered and recognition of all those who’ve been part of my journey. A big thanks to them all.”
Meet the 2023 Entrepreneur Alumni Award Winner
Jerry Ejikeme (Exec MBA 2020)
Founder and CEO, Sochitel Group
Jerry Ejikeme is a serial entrepreneur with over 20 years experience in the telecommunications industry.
In 2007, he founded Sochitel UK and Nomiworld to focus exclusively on the emerging international remittances industry.
Sochitel UK is a leading global FinTech platform and hub, specialising in the distribution of digital products and services. The Sochitel platform provides over 60 million unique end users with digital products and services, from some of the world's leading brands.
With office locations in London, New Jersey, Johannesburg, Accra and Douala, plus several other pan-African locations, the business has developed a strong footprint serving major African banks, mobile money operators and fintech platforms, as well as corporate clients across the globe.
Jerry’s passion for improving the quality of people’s lives through enabling access to digital products and services has led to him supporting several charitable initiatives and causes across Africa.
Jerry has a law degree from the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN) and has been called to the Nigerian Bar. Jerry also holds an Executive MBA from Cranfield School of Management.
Jerry said: “I was surprised and humbled to be nominated, let alone win this award. I am driven by personal conviction and inspiration to provide solutions that enable digital access to and from Africa. The Cranfield Entrepreneur Alumni Award is a wonderful ‘cherry on top’ of all our activities. I am absolutely delighted to be the 2023 recipient of such a prestigious award.”
Meet the 2023 Excellence in Achievement Award for Recent Graduates Winner
James Owen (MBA 2017)
Global Chief Financial Officer, Profiles Division, Kantar
James Owen is the Global Chief Financial Officer of Kantar Profiles, a world-leading marketing data, and analytics company.
James is a multi-award-winning c-suite executive with a proven track record for delivering explosive growth and business transformation. James’ career to date has spanned many industries including retail, FMCG, banking, audit, consultancy, and education.
He is a highly driven and inspiring leader with a passion for elite standards, customer centricity, impactful communication, and a ‘change the game’ attitude.
James is a qualified Fellow of Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) where he was subsequently further recognised through being elected to the global board six years ago to help shape the future of the accounting profession, pivoting towards data science and automation. He was the youngest member elected to the board in CIMA’s 100-year history where he represents the 25,000 qualified members across London and the North Thames region.
During his full-time MBA at Cranfield School of Management James won the 'McFarlane Leadership Prize' and was a nominee for ‘The Odgers Prize’ and the 'Henry Ford II Scholar Award'.
Recently James was nominated for the extremely prestigious Fortune Magazine’s ‘Global 40 Under 40’ and is a regular speaker and panellist at key finance leadership conferences.
James said: “It is a real honour to have won the Excellence in Achievement Award for Recent Graduates, especially given the nominations are submitted by fellow Cranfield alumni. The School of Management still commands gravitas and prestige in the business world and I’m proud to represent our cohort in the boardroom on a daily basis.”
Meet the 2023 Alumni Service Award Winner
Evbusogie Osojie (MSc Finance and Management 2005)
Managing Partner, L'ecole Consulting
Evbusogie Osojie is a Learning and Development Consultant with over 24 years’ experience in banking, training and consulting, and is currently the Founder/Managing Partner of L’ecole Consulting Nigeria Limited. She is skilled in developing learning frameworks and is a specialist in the areas of sales, business etiquette, brand enforcement, service excellence, personal development and leadership. Evbusogie has experience facilitating and consulting for individuals and corporate organisations.
She is a Certified John Maxwell Coach, Teacher, Trainer and Speaker, as well as a Certified Professional Trainer having qualified from the Institute of Leadership and Management UK.
Previously Evbusogie worked with Guaranty Trust bank for over 13 years and garnered vast experience and knowledge in key functions around the bank, having worked in a variety of roles including commercial, corporate and retail business development, operations, energy, strategy and training.
Evbusogie is also passionate about community and charity work and has helped raise funds for the purchase of life-saving equipment at local hospitals.
She is currently the International President of the Cranfield Nigeria Alumni Community. Over the past three years, she has spearheaded activities that have transformed the alumni community into a cohesive network. She has been instrumental in keeping the alumni community active by organising activities to foster bonding amongst members, build connections, and create a vibrant networking and social platform. She has also instituted initiatives to keep members informed and abreast of happenings in the economy and contributed to developing the local ecosystem by bringing investors and budding entrepreneurs together.
Under Evbusogie’s leadership, the alumni community now has over 250 active members collaborating across Nigeria, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Africa and Middle East.