The African Diaspora Awards Gala Honors Change Makers in the Big Apple

Gala drew nearly 500 guests and a shortlist of the best and brightest in the Diaspora such as Nobel Laureate Leymah Gbowee
Applause Africa Logo
Applause Africa Logo
NEW YORK - Dec. 16, 2013 - PRLog -- Applause Africa – one of the longest running publishing companies in the US, disseminating positive news stories of Africa and the Diaspora– honored and celebrated 16 African leaders in New York City last Saturday November 30 at the 3rd annual African Diaspora Awards (ADA). Conceived to recognize the achievements of African leaders and professionals with ingenuity and creativity, who work across categories of media, entertainment, community advocacy and philanthropy, the ADA, is the only major awards show that celebrates exemplary brands and individuals who have made a significant difference in the African community in the United States.

The prestigious ceremony was hosted by Three-time Emmy nominated media professional and PIX 11 News Producer and Correspondent, Ojinika Obiekwe and Veteran French radio presenter Nasser Diallo. Honors were given in the following categories:

* Advocate: Amini Kanjuju (CEO, The Africa America Institute)

* Actor: Yaya Alafia (As seen in the movies Mother of George and The Butler)

* Community Service: Mpule Kwelagobe (Former Miss Universe & CEO, MPULE Institute for Endogenous Development)

* Designer Designer: Korto Momolu (1st Runner Up, Project Runway Cycle 5)

* Diplomat: Ambassador Fillipe Savadogo (Permanent Observer of La Francophonie to the United Nations)

* Entrepreneur: Chinedu Echeruo (Founder, HopStop)

* Film: Mother of George, An Andrew Dosunmu Movie

* Humanitarian: Munyang Reath Kher (Semi-Finalist, Do Something Award)

* Lifetime Achievement: Leymah Gbowee (2011 Nobel Peace Prize Winner)

* Musician: Blitz The Ambassador

* Scholar: Emmanuel Ohuabunwa

Special awards were also presented in the following categories:
* Company of the Year: IBM

* Friends of Africa: Kara Gerson (CEO, Voss Foundation) and Barry Segal (CEO, Segal Family Foundation)

* Person of the Year: Oluchi Orlandi (Creator, Africa’s Next Top Model)

* Creative Artist of the Year: Wangechi Mutu

Michael Ikotun, Co-Founder of Applause Africa says: “The 2013 African Diaspora Awards continues Applause Africa magazine's tradition of celebrating exemplary individuals and brands that have made a significant difference in the African community in the United States. The platform this year celebrated 16 exceptional Diaspora African professionals in front of 500 guests. The number of guests in attendance this year was more than 30% higher than the number we
had last year. This is extraordinary validation of our hard work in providing an innovative platform that reinvents the way Africans celebrate each other.”

Debo Folorunsho, Founder of Applause Africa says that “We ultimately judge ourselves by our ability to pool together an audience that supports the advancement of Africans in the Diaspora. Therefore, the fact that so many people came out on one of the coldest nights of the year, to express their support, means a lot to us and is a confirmation that we are on the right track. Next year, will be bigger and better. You can count on it.”

Additional details about the 2013 ADA celebration, including nominees and sponsors, are available at  Images from the event are available online:



The African Diaspora Awards is a special initiative that aims to celebrate exemplary individuals who have made a significant difference in the African community in the United States. The awards are particularly aimed at motivating young and accomplished African Diaspora professionals to become the change they wish to see in Africa. The African Diaspora Awards aims to identify and celebrate notable Africans that have genuinely excelled in various spheres of life, as well as individuals in society who have contributed to the advancement of Africans in the Diaspora and Africa as a whole. As a new breed of African leaders now seek closer ties with the Diaspora, fully aware of the need to build lasting partnerships between the African Diaspora and the African continent through sustained dialogue and resilient collaboration with the governments and peoples of different regions of the world, home to the African Diaspora; Applause Africa is strategically positioned to empower the Diaspora to effectively engage in the conversation. Visit for more information.


Applause Africa magazine is a quarterly published lifestyle magazine for the progressive African in Diaspora. Applause Africa focuses on the people, cultures, philosophies and successes of Diaspora Africa. Applause Africa started 10 years ago in Nigeria and was introduced in the United States four years ago. Applause Africa is one of very few publications in the US that focus on disseminating positive news on Africa and celebrating exceptional Diaspora African professionals who continue to make Africa proud. Applause Africa is committed to continue to raise the consciousness of African professionals about their collective responsibility and efforts to help build a better Africa by becoming the change they envision. Visit for more information.
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