President and CEO of The Whitaker Group
The Whitaker Group (TWG) is a globally recognized strategic public affairs firm with deep expertise and experience in delivering bottom-line results in Africa. TWG is the firm of choice for Fortune 500 companies and trade associations seeking to enhance their profile, presence and profitability in Africa. Since its inception in 2003, African public and private sector entities have also chosen TWG to attract investments, expand trade, enhance business opportunities and achieve a greater voice and visibility in the United States. Working across a variety of sectors - agribusiness, consumer goods, energy, financial services and health care - TWG has driven more than $1 billion in capital flows and investments to Africa. By pairing customized client strategies with concrete results, TWG leads investment facilitation, global issues management, crisis management and brand-building efforts for global entities seeking to strengthen linkages with Africa. TWG stands at the forefront of transformative business activity with the world’s most promising frontier markets.
Whitaker has received numerous honors, including the 2001 Africa-America Institute Award for Promoting U.S.-Africa Trade Relations and the Annual Achievement Award from the U.S. Association of Importers of Textiles and Apparel in 2000. In 2002, she was named Woman of the Year in International Trade by the Association of Women in International Trade and, in 2003, was inducted into the Hall of Fame for Trade by the Consumers for World Trade.
In 2008 Bennett College named her a Woman with the Audacity to Excel, along with civil rights pioneer Dr. Dorothy Height and three other African-American women leaders. In June 2009, Whitaker was given the Business Leadership Award by the Nigerian Higher Education Foundation.
Foreign Policy (FP) Magazine, the premiere, award-winning magazine of global politics and economics, honored Whitaker as one of its Top 100 Global Thinkers of 2010. She was joined on the list by Microsoft founder Bill Gates and investor Warren Buffett, who shared a headline for their leadership in fighting global health and development challenges, World Bank Group President Robert Zoellick and Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, among others. Mo Ibrahim, founder of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation which awards prizes to African leaders for good governance, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia and Judge Unity Dow of Botswana, advocate for women’s rights and the rights of indigenous peoples, represented additional African perspectives.
Rosa Whitaker is a member of the Executive Board of Mercy Ships, a faith-based charity that has for the past 20 years operated hospital ships in developing nations. She serves on the Board of the Bethune-Du Bois Fund, a scholarship program for minority students created in honor of Mary McLeod Bethune and W. E. B. Du Bois. She joined the Executive Board of the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) in 2010. She has served as vice chair of the U.S.-South Africa Business Council.