The year 2020 has been a different experience for everyone but we can all agree that this year we discovered a side to ourselves that we never imagined possible.

From Kenyans who discovered their entrepreneurial sides to Kenyans who took a bold step to spread positivity in the pandemic.

The greatest leap forward has been in the digital space where brands increased marketing partnerships with influencers.

Today, digital influencers are more than marketing agents, they are agents of change.

Africa Digital Leadership has launched the Africa Digital Influencer Awards (ADIA) to celebrate the amazing work that has been done by the influencer community in Kenya over the last year.

One of the categories is the “Go Beyond Influencer of the Year Award”, proudly sponsored by Safaricom PLC.

The selection panel has identified six extraordinary Kenyans who embody Safaricom’s #TwendeTukiuike (#LetsGoBeyond) spirit.

The literal meaning of Twende Tukiuke is ‘lets break barriers’, ‘go beyond the norm’, ‘take a leap’.

This year has seen more influencers in the digital space breaking barriers, going beyond the norm and taking major leaps in various spheres and for 20 years now, Safaricom has been the silent companion bringing us all together to benefit from each other as we “kiuka”.

Meet the 2020 Go Beyond Influencer of the Year Award nominees:-

Patricia Okello

Patricia Okelo
Patricia Okelo

Patricia is an entrepreneur with over 19 years experience in running two successful small businesses, Willart Productions and Conferencing In A Box.

She is also the co- founder of Kayana Create, the premier space for female entrepreneurs, where women (and some men) come together to nurture small female run business – 0-3 years through various educational and networking events, such as the very successful ‘Candid Conversations: Circles for Women in business’ and ‘The Kenya Cottage Industry Expo ‘19.

She is passionate about Women in Business and co- authored ‘A Candid Handbook for Women Doing Business’ that has received good reviews. She deeply believes in the “Spirit of Abundance” as the change the world needs.

Wawira Njiru

Wawira Njiru
Wawira Njiru

Wawira Njiru has become a household name for her efforts in the sector of education.

She received the 2018 Global Citizen Prize for Youth Leadership for her Food4Education programme.

Among other accolades under her belt are; youngest recipient of the University of South Australia’s alumni award 2017, a 2018 Rainer Arnhold Fellow, a recipient of the Builders of Africa Award 2018 and one of 2018’s Top 40 under 40 women in Kenya.

Food for Education has created a sustainable model of efficiently providing locally sourced, high quality, nutritious meals to public primary school children. They have provided over 1,000,000 meals and their scalable, efficient model is creating the first sustainable path to solve the child nutrition crisis for 500 million African children.

She is passionate about African youth and African led solutions.

Humphrey Kayange

Humphrey Kayange, OGW
Humphrey Kayange, OGW

Rugby legend Humphrey Kayange has continued to inspire us even after his retirement from the sport.

Kayange is a research scientist, a technical expert in the Chromatography section in analysis of pesticide residues and method development of various tests in the lab.

He is currently the Principal Laboratory Analyst at the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS).

He is also the co-founder of Good Kenyan Foundation, a non-profit organization which mentors, empowers and equips high school graduates through a four-month training program.

Elsa Majimbo

Elsa Majimbo (Photo: Forbes)
Elsa Majimbo (Photo: Forbes)

Elsa Majimbo is an award-winning Nairobi-based comedian, entertainer and brand ambassador.

She is popular for her unique style of comedy, which features her crunching potato crisps, leaning back on a pillow and using tiny 1990s sunglasses as a prop.

Majimbo has proven that one can achieve much with just a little, as she started with an iPhone 6, sunglasses and a bag of crisps.

The videos have so far earned her over 900,000 followers on Instagram and a campaign with Rihanna's Fenty beauty.

Crazy Kennar

Kennedy Odhiambo alias Crazy Kennar
Kennedy Odhiambo alias Crazy Kennar

Kennedy Odhiambo alias Crazy Kennar is an exemplary comedian whose work is making a meaningful impact on mental health awareness and other societal issues.

The popular YouTuber is currently a third year Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Sciences student at the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT).

His channel “The Tales of Kennar”, has over 163K subscribers and multi-million views.

Francis Amonde

#CupOfUji Founder Francis Otieno Amonde
#CupOfUji Founder Francis Otieno Amonde

Another Kenyan making great contributions to food security in the country is the #CupOfUji founder Francis Otieno Amonde.

His feeding program seeks to fight hunger, drive education and alleviate poverty among less privileged primary school children in Kenya.

He also sits on the Board of Wings of Hope organization in Kenya, an organization rescuing teenage mothers from slums.

He has served as a teacher at the Nyali Integrated Academy in Mombasa, teaching ICT, English and History to Year 9,10 and 11 students.

Vote! Vote! Vote!

These six well-deserving Kenyans are battling it out for the Go Beyond Influencer of the Year Award.

You have an opportunity to vote for the one you believe has consistently demonstrated their ability to influence positive transformation in the lives of others.

To vote for your favourite influencer, visit adia.africa/voting. Voting closes on the 15th of December at midnight.

The online awards ceremony will be streamed live on 20th December.