For Pamela Ogang, sustainability is more than just going green and being environmentally friendly.
A firm believer that diversity in business can lead to the creation of a more sustainable global community, the young immigrant was recognized in this year’s Corporate Knights magazine list of Top-30 Under-30 individuals who are demonstrating exemplary leadership on sustainability issues.
Last December, Ogang founded Minority Women in Business to help aspiring female entrepreneurs achieve their business potential.
“Traditionally, we think sustainability is about the environment, but there is also economic and social sustainability,” said the 26-year-old. “I am just happy to be part of that group that’s recognized. My purpose is to empower minority and immigrant women who traditionally do not hold power. We need more examples of how businesses can be profitable and still have integrity.”
Born in England to Ugandan immigrant parents, Ogang lived in Ivory Coast, Burundi and Kenya – she spent 12 years in the East African country – before coming to Canada in 2006 to attended McGill University, where she completed a Bachelor of Science three years later and a Bachelor of Commerce in 2012.
Entering McGill with the intention of becoming a doctor, Ogang discovered a passion for business.
“For me, it has always been about following my gut instinct,” she said. “If it feels right, I pursue it. If it doesn’t work out, that’s not the end of the world. My mantra is ‘just do it’.”
Ogang said she enjoyed her time at McGill, where she was a research and outreach assistant.
“At the university, I felt the undertone of what it means to be different,” she said. “In spite of that, I would tell anyone that if they want to pursue business specifically, it’s an amazing school. The professors care and want their students to succeed.”