Adaobi Okafor Named to SWB Board of Directors
Soccer Without Borders (SWB) is pleased to announce that Adaobi Okafor has been named to the SWB Board of Directors. Adaobi comes to us with over a decade of experience at Trees for the Future, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve livelihoods of impoverished farmers by revitalizing degraded lands.
Currently serving as Director of Finance, Adaobi earned a Bachelor's Degree in Biochemistry from Georgetown University before obtaining a Masters of Science in Business Analysis from The Catholic University of America.
Learn more about Adaobi, her love for soccer, the importance of impact, and what inspired her to join the SWB Board of Directors.
Can you describe your personal connection with the game of soccer?
I'm Nigerian, born and raised in Nigeria. I got interested in soccer because of how passionate everybody was about the game – everyone had their favorite teams and their favorite clubs and it just brought everyone together. I would sit next to my dad and watch games with him. Eventually, I found myself actually getting passionate about what was going on, cheering when everybody was cheering and learning the rules of the game and the terminology.
I just love the way soccer can make people become fast friends – it is the fastest icebreaker. You sit next to somebody and you're best of friends because you cheer for the same club or you're supporting the same country. And then all of a sudden you can have much more in-depth conversations because you've already formed this intense bond during a very quick meeting.
How did you first get involved in or connected to SWB?
I am quite new to SWB. I just learned about your organization from Jennifer [Tepper], your Executive Director. I worked with her a couple of years ago and I learned more about the organization when she became the Executive Director. Although I just recently learned about SWB, I was immediately impressed with your mission and your reach, with the impact you're having on youth, girls in particular and refugees too.
What inspires you to continue to be a part of SWB?
I work in the nonprofit space, so I pay close attention to impact when I review other nonprofits. I am like: What kind of impact are they making? What long-term impacts are you having on the community beyond just the most visible things that you do? [At Trees for the Future], we plant trees, but our impact on the community is getting people out of poverty. These types of layers are what I look for in a nonprofit. I was really impressed by the kind of impact that SWB has had.
What are you looking forward to most about joining the Board of Directors?
I am looking forward to being able to contribute in my own small way to the mission and support where I can. A couple of years ago I became the new Deputy Director of Finance and I was greatly impacted by our board. They really helped me put subsystems in place and helped guide me as we were going through a major transition. The board was invaluable to me, [they were] just really impactful and helpful. So that is definitely something I am looking forward to, to pay it forward to another organization.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I would just like to reiterate that I am really excited to become part of the organization. I am looking forward to contributing in any way that I can, to support the mission and to encourage the work that is being done across the country and the world – to build upon that and to have great long lasting impacts.
Welcome Adaobi, we’re glad you’re here!