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Oluwayemi “Yemi” Adenuga born 23 September, 1971 is a Nigerian–Irish TV personality, broadcaster, and advocate for women’s and youth’s issues. She is a two-time best-selling author, development and leadership expert, speaker, relationship/marriage mentor and entrepreneur. She hosted Nigeria’s Number 1 television talk show, Sharing with Yemi, from 1996–2003 on Nigeria’s first private television station, Africa Independent Television (AIT). The Irish Tatler magazine named Adenuga one of Ireland’s most influential. Yemi is the Group Chief Executive Officer of D-Dymensions Communications, a holding company and the creator of three signature brands: Sheroes Global, The MIB class (Motivate. Inspire. Build) and Exploring Options Project. She travels around Europe, Africa and America, giving career talks to young people, creating awareness about the need for young people to begin to think early, about what they would like to do for a career. She is the author of The power of THANK YOU, a motivational book about the attitude of gratitude; and ‘Exploring Options… A guide to making career choices’, a free training support for secondary school students about early career choices.
Born to the late Pa Isaac Olujimi Solaru and Deaconess Christian Solaru on 23 September 1971, Yemi grew up in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria, where her father worked for Shell Nigeria. She attended Army Children’s School, GRA, and Government Secondary School Eneka, both in Port Harcourt, completing her secondary school education in Christ Apostolic Grammar School, Iperu-Remo, Ogun State. She studied accountacy and mass communication at the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria and holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Studies (Human Resource Management Stream) from University College Dublin and a Master of Business Administration degree (Project Management stream) from Liverpool John Moores University. She holds a Post-graduate certificate in Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Enterprise at University of Dublin Innovation Academy.
A qualified and highly experienced training consultant, Yemi has FETAC level 6 certificates in Training and development, Computerised Accounts, Computerised Payroll, as well as a certificate in first line management from the Institute of Leadership and Management, Ireland. She also holds a diploma in television directing from the CEFAP institute of Television Production and Directing in Paris. She is a member of several professional bodies including the Institute of leadership and Management, Ireland, the MBA Association of Ireland and Project Management Association, Ireland. She is also an associate of the Irish Institute of training and development. Yemi started her career as an accounts and administrative officer with WASCO advertising, Kaduna, Nigeria in 1989, exiting the company as an advertising executive in 1991.
Her broadcast career took off in 1990 when she passed an audition to become a pioneering staff of the Ogun State Broadcasting Corporation’s new FM Radio station, OGBC2 where she worked with ace broadcasters like Olusesan Ekisola. Yemi worked there as a Newscaster, scriptwriter, presenter and Radio producer and in 1991, became known on radio as The fox that Rocks the box. She presented and produced several programmes including; On a personal note, FM mail bag, weekend special and Early bird. In 1994, she joined DAAR Communications PLC, Nigeria to become a Pioneering member of Nigeria’s first private radio station, Ray Power 100Fm and subsequently became Manager of Programmes. There she presented and produced programmes which included; Straight from the heart, bone of my bones, thank God its Friday, Sunny side up, The Ultimate morning show and Ray power express. She also produced several radio documentaries on developmental issues most of which were done in collaboration with UNICEF.
Yemi made her move into Television in 1996 to work for Africa Independent Television (AIT), Nigeria’s first private Television station. Yemi is the first female presenter to present a programme on the first private Radio station in Nigeria, Ray Power 100fm, and also the director/producer of the first programme to be aired on the first private television station in Nigeria, AIT.
She hosted and produced Multi-Award winning Television talk show, “Sharing with Yemi” which was Nigeria’s leading talk show from 1996 – 2003. Aside from producing and directing numerous TV programmes, Adenuga researched, produced and directed several documentaries among which were; Africa, what hope for tomorrow (very first programme broadcast on AIT, Nigeria’ first private TV station), Life after these (on girls in difficult situations in Nigeria), the Italian connection (on situations of Nigerian girls prostituting in Italy), If only I was a boy (on sexual and reproductive health of adolescent girls in Nigeria), we can speak for ourselves (for 1996 day of the African child on the state of the African child), the Legend lives on (on King Sunny Ade at 50), Healing with a smile (on the power of helping others), love for sale (on young undergraduates prostituting in schools) and She had no choice (on girls with VVF resulting from early marriage).
With a desire to develop and pursue her business development career, Adenuga relocated to Ireland in 2000 and worked with IBM international holdings, Ireland from 2003 to 2010, exiting the company as a cost accountant.
In 2004, Yemi founded African Women Development Initiative a development oriented, non-profit, non-governmental organisation, set up to serve as a support network body for migrant African women in Ireland and relief for women in deplorable situations. Yemi work with AWDI supports Women refuges in Ireland including Drogheda Women Refuge and Meath Women’s refuge through fundraising programmes to help female victims of domestic violence and their children, and building on its current leadership project, to educate, give moral support to, and develop women for leadership positions.
In 2007, Yemi and her husband, Deji Adenuga. an A-list Nigerian actor, established D-Dymensions Communications, an international Business management holding company for six subsidiaries; through which it offers its wide range of creative, strategic, high-quality and effective consultancy services, with a goal to know the needs of clients and develop strategic interventions to meet them with excellent and satisfactory deliverables.
Yemi and Deji Adenuga started Nigerian Carnival Ireland in 2008, an annual cultural carnival held in the historic Phoenix Park, Dublin, and its aim is to promote Social integration, celebrate cultural diversity and Cultural heritage, promote tourism in Ireland, inform and educate people about the different, diverse cultures of the ethnic communities in the now Multicultural Ireland while re-orientating peoples’ perception of Nigeria to defeat negative stereotypes. Yemi is the Carnival Director of Nigerian Carnival Ireland.
Yemi Founded ‘Sheroes Global’ in 2012, a Women development and support organisation which builds women and youth to become positive change agents through changing orientation, to build positive mind-set, recognizing their efforts, celebrating their successes, empowering them to build sustainable businesses in line with the UN sustainable development goal 2030, and encouraging them to be supportive of one another. The goal of Sheroes Global is to inspire women to be more, influence women to support one another to be more, and celebrate women who dare to be more. Its vision is to see society where women can reach their highest potentials, free of violence, and supported by not just men, but other women, who desire the best for her and gladly recognize and celebrate her achievements.
Yemi has worked on several media and stage acting projects in Ireland including;
- Memory Box (Yemi is the voice of Lilian, in this three-part animation series ‘Abbi’s Circle’, produced by FOMAC, which focuses on immigrant family reunification’ in Ireland).
- Team Spirit (Animated Sequel to Memory box).
- New Town Centre Project (A Ronan McCrea production where Yemi narrates under Projected photographic images telling of an unspecified protagonist’s tangential thoughts, reports, anecdotes and quotes).
- No handouts in Europe (Yemi writes the script and narrates this one-hour Radio Drama for RTÉ, Ireland’s national Radio station).
- A street car named desire (Yemi plays Isabel in this stage adaptation by the Navan theatre group).
- The Dilemma of a Ghost (Yemi Plays Ato’s mother in this Ghanaian play).
- Spectrum (Yemi was presenter on this programme on mainstream Irish radio dealing specifically with immigrant issues).
- Once upon a time (Yemi plays narrator in this stage play).
- Not too long ago (Yemi Narrates the stories of Migrants in a now multicultural Ireland).
Over and over again, Yemi has demonstrated by her own examples, determination and hard work, that any goal can be achieved. This dynamic storyteller captures her audience with her conversational style of presentation and training, encouraging her audience to build their confidence and take the key to their own success.
Yemi ‘s passion to pay it forward is recognized in the humanitarian and philanthropic initiatives she lends herself to. Yemi is the founder and CEO of African Women Development Initiative, the chairperson of Migrant Women Leaders Council Ireland and is two-time chairperson of the Board of Management of Cultúr Migrants Centre, Co. Meath, Ireland. She served as the chairperson of the steering committee of the M.I.M.E. project (Migrants Integrating in Meath Equally), Ireland, the Vice-President of the Meath Intercultural Network, Ireland and Project Manager for Cultúr Migrant Centre, Ireland. Yemi worked with a team of other PLA researchers to carry out a thorough and very successful research project work which has led to the development of an Integration Strategy in County Meath, Ireland.