From her office, Beatrice occasionally catches a glimpse of commuter buses. They remind her of the past. Sixteen years ago, she worked in one of them as a bus conductor.
In this year’s Top 40 Under 40 Women, she nominated herself because she believes it has taken a lot to scale the success ladder.
“ While in Grade 6, my father got retrenched from his government job and I had to repeat two classes to allow my sister to join secondary school. I am the third born in a family of six.”
At 16, just when she had joined Form 1, Beatrice got pregnant.
"As a young mother in high school, I couldn't envision myself here. Then, all I yearned for was opportunities that would set me on a path to success."
“Pregnancy at a certain age spells doom for you and your family, especially if you are poor. Thankfully, when my son turned two months, I went back to school, leaving him under my mother’s care. This was my turning point in life. I had to mature faster compared to my peers and work harder to care for my son. When I completed secondary school and joined college, I worked as a bus conductor (Citi Hoppa) to pay my school fees and feed my son.”
Beatrice would later get a job at Kenya Private Sector Alliance (Kepsa).
“I worked there for five years. In 2015, I joined Kenya Revenue Authority. Five years later, I am the chief manager, customer experience- overseeing the management of interactions with customers. I lead about 400 employees. Before ascending to this position, I was the chief manager in my early 30s, which is rare.”
Beatrice’s success is hinged on determination.
“As a young mother in high school, I couldn’t envision myself here. Then, all I yearned for was opportunities that would set me on a path to success. Even today, it is what I yearn for most—an opportunity to learn and grow.”