Ribin Ondwari, 31

Partner and Head of Real Estate, Banking & Financial Services

Ashitiva Advocates LLP
My Story

Ribin is a high-achiever, a shooting star in a dull universe.

In his first year of practising law, he won the Young Lawyer of the Year Award by the Kenya Law Society.

The Moi University law graduate says to stand out in your career, you must think globally.

“I have been lucky to get early exposure. I attended an associate induction at Baker Mckenzie in the UK while working at Hamilton Harrison & Matthews.”

"Being me is being ambitious. I burden myself with being a go-getter, even at the risk of straining the other aspects of life. It’s a delicate balancing act."

His biggest achievement, he says is being a partner and Head of Real Estate Banking and Financial Services at Ashitiva Advocates.

Before that, he was the legal counsel (on secondment) at Standard Chartered Bank.

“The trust placed on me by the firms, clients, and these opportunities is what has buoyed me.”

Ribin is also an elected council member of the Law Society of Kenya (Nairobi branch).

He talks of the importance of sending the elevator back down.

The measure of a man, it is said, is judged by his handling of adversity. Ribin has faced challenges, chief among them getting into the current position two months just before the global pandemic hit.

He dug deep, weathered the slings and arrows, and now leads a team of 12 advocates, maybe his only regret is that he never gets the time to enjoy life. However, he says, he would not trade what he is doing for anything in the world.

“I have always wanted to be a lawyer,” he says.

“Being me is being ambitious. I burden myself with being a go-getter, even at the risk of straining the other aspects of life. It’s a delicate balancing act.”

Luck, he notes, is the magic dust sprinkled on his career.

The facts in his case tilt the scales; for him, there is nowhere to go but up.

However, speaking to Ribin you get the sense of a man who despite his head being in the global clouds, his feet are still planted firmly in the ground. “It is a permanent and unrelenting quest,” he says.

Ribin says there is no room for complacency in his career.

“In everything we do as a team, we seek to deliver value to our clients, be disciplined professionals and drive profit for the firm,” he says.

Eddy Ashioya