Ford Foundation Years
In January 2013, Innocent joined Ford Foundation as the Regional Director for West Africa. Innocent was the first Nigerian to hold that position.
In 2015 when President Muhammadu Buhari was elected President, Innocent coordinated a strategic funding by Ford Foundation, McArthur Foundation and Open Society Institute for West Africa, OSIWA for the anti-corruption agenda of the government, and especially the work of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, (PACAC).
Under his transformational leadership, the West Africa office supported critical work with government at federal and state levels; and pioneered the hosting of difficult but important conversations on the civil war in Nigeria, its impact and the way forward. He also initiated ground-breaking work in the area of impact investing in West Africa with the sole purpose of leveraging resources from the private sector towards meeting the Sustainable development Goals, SDG.
This led to the launching of the Impact Investors Foundation. He was a skilled grantmaker.
When COVID-19 struck in March 2020, Innocent reached out to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC and was a member of the ANAP Foundation COVID-19 Think Tank. Ford Foundation under him, supported the Lagos State government with vehicles to assist with contact tracing.
“Innocent had the MIDAS TOUCH. Anything he touched, turned to gold.
He recently retired from Ford Foundation (January 31st, 2021) after 8 years of meritorious service.