In 2017, BP Appointed its First Ever Black Female CEO

Priscillah Mabelane
BP, a world-class multinational oil and gas company, changed its direction of leadership back in 2017 when they appointed their first-ever black female CEO, Priscillah Mabelane. Mabelane worked for BP for 6 years before becoming the company's CEO, but she has been making great strides with her work for decades.
For over 20 years, Priscillah built up a portfolio of leadership roles, including her service as the Operations Director for BP’s UK retail business. Her career included jobs such as the CFO of Airports Company, tax director of Ernst & Young, as well as roles in finance and general management for Eskom Holdings Limited.

This effort to adequately diversify the roles of leadership in the industry did not go unnoticed, as was proven when Mabelane's promotion caught the ears of officials such as Mmamoloko Kubayi, the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation of South Africa. Kubaji shared a statement upon Mabelane's appointment, commenting, "Priscillah’s appointment reinforces BPSA’s...commitment to cultivating a diverse and inclusive workforce."

Thanks to her appointment, according to, BPSA currently holds "the highest number (6) of women in leadership positions, which is over 50% of the executive team. The organization’s board chairperson position is also currently held by a woman, Adv. Thandi Orleyn, since 2011." This effort shows that large businesses and companies stand to gain much from reconsidering their demographic of leadership roles.