The Future is Bright – JDX Panel Event


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Black History Month was founded to explore, discover and celebrate black history, heritage and culture. It provides an important opportunity to uncover the day-to-day reality of institutionalised racism – both in our past and today.

At JDX, we want to explore future possibilities: black culture forms the fabric of our society – from the food

we eat and the way we speak to the music we listen to, and yet, black culture is largely oppressed in the workplace. As we celebrate the contributions of black people in the UK and beyond, we want to explore how we can encourage inclusivity, diversity, and celebrate black culture in our everyday lives. What can Firms do to embrace and celebrate the true identities of their workforce in the workplace?

Join our CEO, Seamus Smith, as he hosts a virtual panel discussion on 29th October to explore black culture, history, and how to make the future of the workplace a brighter one.


Seamus Smith

CEO JDX Consulting

Seamus joined JDX in September 2020 as CEO. Seamus has significant experience in the payments, banking and technology sectors across multiple geographies. Seamus is a recognised diversity champion and in 2018 was named in the Financial Times Global ‘Top 50 male champions of Women in Business’ listing.

Aurie Styla

Stand-up comedian, presenter and comedy promoter from London

Having started stand-up comedy back in 2010, Aurie has tirelessly honed his craft and his likeable charisma has earned him fans in the thousands.

Starting out as a function host, he quickly became a favourite of many universities across the UK for his easy going nature and quick wit. He was a regular master of ceremonies for both club and comedy nights before deciding to turn his attention solely towards stand-up.

Aurie has worked with many notable comedians from around the world, both as a fellow performer and also as a promoter for his phenomenally popular ‘ComedyMania’ events. His consistency and warm persona sees him regularly employed as a warm up comedian for the major broadcasters and on shows such as The Big Narstie show and The Mo Gilligan Show. Alongside his comedy work, he’s also worked with the likes of Will.I.Am, Benedict Cumberbatch, Wayne Rooney, Robin Van-Persie as well as corporate work for, amongst others, Facebook and Da Bounce in Holland.

In 2016, Aurie self-produced and toured his first live stand-up comedy special “Working… Hardly!”, around the UK, with all dates completely sold out. In 2017, he toured his second “Straight Up!” again with all shows sold out. Due to overwhelming demand, both tours were extended. He’s currently touring his third show ‘Just Like that’

Aurie co-star’s to the 2019 horror comedy “Are We Dead Yet?,’ produced and directed by Fredi Nwaka, and also starring Hakkan Hassan, Jessica Stafford, Bradley Turner & Paul Danan.

Aurie currently presents on BBC Radio London, every Monday night from 8pm – 10pm. The show is called ‘The Scene’ where Aurie invites guests from all avenues of entertainment to interview, and discuss current affairs, with a comical twist. Recently he appeared on Jonathan Ross’ Comedy Club on ITV. He also features in a documentary all about the British Black Comedy Scene for Channel 4.


Sonia Essobmadje, CFA

Vice President, Structured Finance, Societe Generale

Sonia is an investment banking professional with more than 12 years of international experience. Throughout her various positions, she has developed an in-depth understanding of global debt financing and capital markets. She is currently a structured finance specialist at Societe Generale Corporate Investment Banking.

Sonia has developed a strong expertise in green and positive impact finance. She has contributed to launch the green bond offer within Societe Generale and take an active role in the first green issuances of the bank. She has been involved in in the Positive Impact Finance Initiative of UNEP-FI (United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative) since 2015. The initiative aims to explore solutions to the financing gap for sustainable development and the Sustainable Development Goals.

She is the co-author of the paper “ Rethinking Impact to Finance the SDGs” published last year. The paper explores new ways to significantly decrease the cost of achieving the SDGs and stimulate business and financing solutions at scale.

Sonia regularly speaks during international events such as the Regional Climate Week organized by UNFCCC (United Nations Framework on Climate Change Convention) and regularly animates workshop on innovative finance (ECOWAS, IFC…)

Sonia is one the co-founder of the NGO “Coalition Digitale” which ultimate goal is to promote inclusive and sustainable development in Africa via ICT (Information and Communication Technology).

She holds a Master of Science in trading and asset management from ESLSCA Business School , a master of corporate finance from California State University and Cergy Pontoise University. She successfully completed a BA in programming and computer software from University Paris XIII. Sonia is CFA charterholder since 2017.

Albert Tucker

Chairman of the Karma Cola Foundation and Director of the Renewable Power Exchange

Albert Tucker is Chairman of the Karma Cola Foundation, supporting communities in Sierra Leone. He is a Director of The Renewable Power Exchange a renewable energy enterprise linking renewable energy and people living in fuel poverty. Albert is an EU expert adviser on Diaspora engagement and policy. He is a pioneering figure in the Fairtrade movement and an active global player in community regeneration and sustainable development. He has a strong track record in leading and building successful social enterprises, working to multiple bottom lines e.g. Cafedirect, Divine Chocolate, and Twin Trading. He has a long track record of community organising and leadership globally. He is Chairman of Etico ethical trading company, Trustee of the Carnegie UK Trust, Common Purpose, the global leadership organisation. He has been a Director of Places for People one of the largest Housing Association in the UK. He has an MA in Social Policy and Administration.

Aondo-Kume Feese

Director within Operations at Morgan Stanley

Currently a Director within Operations at Morgan Stanley, Kume was born in Nigeria and moved to the UK in 2008. In recent months, Kume has been instrumental in assisting Morgan Stanley’s Operations division with their initiative to bring about change in relation to the Black working experience at the firm. Kume firmly believes that the key to change is through participating in conversations about race, diversity and inclusion.



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