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British lawyer, Funke Abimbola-Akindolie was today awarded the M.B.E. (Member of the Order of the British Empire) by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II in her 91st birthday honours list for 2017 for services to diversity in the legal profession and to young people. Prince Charles presented the award on the Queen’s behalf.

Funke Abimbola Akindolie receiving her MBE award by Prince Charles today

Who is Funke Abimbola-Akindolie ?

  • Funke attended Burgess Hill School, West Sussex from 1986-1991. She then attended the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne from 1991-1994 where she obtained her LLB Hons degree.
  • She worked as an Assistant Solicitor at Campbell Hooper from February 2001-2005. She then moved to the firm of Picton Solicitors where she worked as assistant solicitor January 2006-Dec 2007. From January 2008- 2011, Funke was a senior solicitor at IBB solicitors.
  • In January 2012, she resumed at Roche as Managing Counsel for UK and Ireland.  From June 2015-November 2015 she acted as Company Secretary and in December 2015 she was promoted to her current position of General Counsel and Company Secret
  • Funke Abimbola-Akindolie is currently the General Counsel and Head of Financial Compliance at Roche, making her the most senior lawyer in the world’s  largest biotech firm.

Recognition in legal directories
• Leading in-house lawyer, Legal 500 directory since 2012
• Leading lawyer from a black ethnic minority background, Black Letter Law since 2012
• Expert in corporate/M&A law, Chambers legal directory 2012
• Listed in “Who’s who in the law” Legal 500 directory since 2011
• Recommended for commercial law, Legal 500 directory 2011
• In 2014 she was invited to join the Innovative GC (General Counsel) Club following her ranking in the Financial Times Innovative Lawyers report.
Awards and recognitions
2016 Women4Africa – Recognition award for outstanding achievements and contributions
2015 Positive Role Model (Gender) Award, National Diversity Awards 2015 – Winner

• Career Woman of the Year Award, Women4Africa 2015 – Winner
• Outstanding Woman in Professional Services, Precious Awards 2015 – Winner
• Inspiring Member of the Year, Inclusive Network Awards 2015 – Winner
• Top 30 Inspirational Woman Champion of Diversity, Brummell Magazine 2015
• Outstanding Mother of the Year Award, Women4Africa 2015 – Finalist
• Diversity Champion of the Year, Excellence in Diversity Awards 2015 – Finalist
• Most Innovative European in-house legal team, Financial Times (Innovative Lawyer Awards) – 2015 ranking
• STEM Leader of the Year, Black British Business Awards 2015 – Finalist
• Certificate of Merit, British Citizen Awards 2015
• Fellowship of the Royal Society of Arts

Funke is mother to a 13 year old son.

In her spare time, she works as a volunteer for various organizations including Friends of Cancer, Research, UK, Speakers for Schools and Aspiring Solicitors.


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