2015 FACE List Honorees
The last of six children raised by a widowed mother, Chima grew up understanding the value of hard work and had great expectations for herself. However, she did not anticipate becoming one of the most-influential women of color in technology. Born in Ibadan, Nigeria, coming of age in the U.K., and succeeding in a career that has spanned the entire world, Fumbi Chima (pictured) is a living embodiment of the modern American dream.
Chima is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for Walmart Asia, one of the world’s largest corporations. As CIO, she provides vision and leadership for developing and implementing information technology initiatives that align with Walmart’s objectives and leads IT strategic and operational planning to achieve the company’s goals by fostering innovation, prioritizing IT initiatives, and coordinating the evaluation, deployment, and management of current and future IT systems across the organization.
The first step in Chima’s journey to her “destiny,” as she describes it, began at Price Waterhouse, where she took a post as a Management Consultant. This early opportunity provided Chima with the foundation to strive to be the best she could be at all times and in all situations.
After Price Waterhouse, Chima moved to New York to take up a position at JP Morgan Chase and then at American Express. On the advice of her husband, Chima then took a position at Walmart, where her focus (imbued in her by her family since childhood) and her versatility (acquired over the course of her brilliant career) became invaluable assets.
At Walmart, Chima rose through the ranks easily, executing effectively and delivering efficiently on every opportunity and responsibility. In early 2014, Chima was bestowed the most important responsibility yet in her career: moving to Hong Kong to become the Chief Information Office for Walmart’s Asian operations. Her charge was simple, to “go out and make a difference”.
Since her appointment, Chima has been working to increase the opportunities available to women and minorities within Walmart and in the larger corporate and technology worlds. She has worked tireless to impart the knowledge necessary to create future women leaders like herself, and has fought to be a mentor, role model, champion, and advocate for women in STEM programs around the world.
Now, Chima wants to bring her passion for women empowerment to Africa, contributing to the building of the next generation of African leaders in order to tap the latent potential on the continent.
Her advice to young African professionals is simple: “Find your passion, do what you are good at, and be great at what you like.”
She believes that, if a person is passionate about what it is they’re doing, that passion will exude from every pore in their body and it will be obvious to all those around them.