Excellence in Leadership

global mindset & leadership story = BENJAMIN OLA AKANDE, PH.D.

St. Louis, October 20, 2014.  Benjamin Akande to join the Dancing with the St. Louis Stars to raise funds to support the important work of the Independence Center. Read More >



Valuing Excellence in Leadership, Benjamin Ola Akande, Ph.D., shows that the future belongs to those who can see it.

Photos by Rebecca Barr, TuSquare Studio

Dean Akande holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Wayland Baptist University, Masters in Public Administration, Masters of Arts in Economics, and Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Oklahoma. He completed additional post-doctoral studies at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, and the Saïd School of Business, Oxford University, in the areas of leadership and change. Dr. Akande has been recognized by the St. Louis Business Journal as one of the city’s “Most Influential Leaders,” 2007-2012. In more than twenty-five years as a professor and administrator, he has demonstrated the capacity to lead by investing significant personal involvement in his professional calling. His tireless efforts have contributed to the transformation of institutions and organizations in the public and private sectors, consistently positioning them to fulfill their mission and surpass their goals. He is passionately committed to the success of his faculty, staff, and students and has nurtured many alumni to significant roles in their respective fields all around the world.

Find meaning in every conversation – it’s not how long the conversation lasts; it’s how good it is.
— Benjamin Ola Akande

Dr. Akande has shown an unrelenting commitment to the central tenets of higher education as an award-winning teacher, personally influencing the lives of his students. His application-based research interest has focused on strategy, leadership, and generational diversity. Throughout his tenure at Webster University, Dean Akande has dedicated himself to student-centered education without regard for customary demographics, enabling both traditional college-age and non-traditional working adult populations to access creative enrichment programs, mentorships, internships, and employment opportunities. Under his leadership, student enrollments and graduation rates have risen by more than 40% over the past decade. Dean Akande leads Webster’s largest academic unit, responsible for a majority of the institution’s $220 million total tuition revenue. Webster University’s total enrollment is 22,000 students, of which 14,200 are students enrolled in the Walker School.



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A dynamic, engaging, and inspirational speaker with a knack for audience connection,  Benjamin Akande  speaks frequently nationally and internationally on a variety of critically important matters relevant today and tomorrow. Example Topics:

  • Leadership Through Storytelling
  • Perseverance and Resilience
  • Industry Insight
  • Politics
  • The IPOD Generation
  • The Keys to Networking
  • Strategy Execution




Benjamin Akande has more than 20 years of consulting with Fortune 500 companies and private enterprises in a wide variety of industries with special attention to leadership and corporate culture. As a corporate board member and high-performing executive, Benjamin has seen many sides of organizations from many roles. He's prepared to help your organization see around the corner on the toughest challenges you face.

Areas of Practice

  • Higher Education Leadership
  • Comparative Analysis
  • Leadership Development
  • Corporate Diversity
  • Corporate Culture and Change
  • Benchmarking
  • Market Positioning and Branding
  • Corporate Strategy

Benjamin Akande has worked closely with many corporations, including:

  • Anheuser Busch
  • Express Scripts
  • Enterprise Rent-A-Car


Inquire About Consulting Opportunities

Benjamin Akande, dean of the Walker School of Business & Technology at Webster University, will join community leaders at Independence Center’s annual benefit, Dancing with the St. Louis Stars, on Jan. 24 at The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis.  The event supports Independence Center in its mission to assist adults who are living with serious and persistent mental illness.

In preparation for the event, Akande is working with professional dancer Stephanie Medeiros to choreograph a routine – a hip-hop and African-inspired number – which the couple will perform live at the Dancing with the Stars event. The winning couple will be chosen based on the amount of money raised, and Akande has set a personal goal of raising $30,000Votes can be cast online, and each vote equals $10.  All proceeds benefit Independence Center, and there is no limit to the number of votes cast.

“I am honored to participate in Independence Center’s Dancing with the St. Louis Stars benefit,” Akande said.  “Mental illness is a challenging diagnosis, but it is not a journey people should take alone. Together, we can ensure that people facing this challenge receive the treatment they need to have a buoyant  livelihood moving forward.”

Cast your vote for Akande and Medeiros. Like Akande’s Facebook page.

About Independence Center

In 2014, Independence Center celebrated its 33rd year of providing comprehensive programs and services to adults with severe and persistent mental illness.  Proceeds from Dancing with the St. Louis Stars will help restore lives through promoting rehabilitation and employment, as well as providing educational, social and housing opportunities that assist adults living with severe and mental illness to live and work in the community, independently and with dignity.

Read the Press Release >



December 3, 2014, 5:30-7:30pm – Walker School Holiday Reception – Walker School of Business & Technology, , Edward Jones Commons Area

BOA with the Walkers: hip-hop music, joined by the Walker School’s faculty and staff, Beckah Reed, Webster’s Artistic Director, Department of Dance, and Angie Brooks, dance partner.

January 24, 2015, 6:00-10:30pm – Dancing with St. Louis Stars - The Dance Off The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis – Benjamin will be performing a combination of hip-hop/African dance with Angie Brooks, joined by friends.