Funmi Iyanda, born Olufunmilola Aduke Iyanda on July 27, 1971, is a renowned Nigerian presenter, talk show host, broadcaster, media executive, philanthropist, journalist, blogger, and film and TV producer. With her captivating personality and dedication to shedding light on important social issues, Funmi Iyanda has made a significant impact in the Nigerian media industry.
In this blog post, we will delve into her early life, education, career, and philanthropic endeavors, highlighting her remarkable achievements along the way.
Early Life and Education:
Funmi Iyanda was born in Lagos, Nigeria to Gabriel and Yetunde Iyanda. Sadly, her mother passed away when she was just seven years old, and she was raised on the Lagos Mainland.
She attended the African Church Princess Primary School and Herbert Macaulay School in Lagos for her elementary education. Later, she pursued her secondary education at the International School in Ibadan. Funmi Iyanda furthered her studies at the University of Ibadan, where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Geography.
Funmi Iyanda’s journey in television began with her production and hosting of Good Morning Nigeria, a breakfast magazine show. Her segments on the show, such as “Heroes” and “Street Life,” focused on celebrating deserving individuals and highlighting intriguing human-interest stories from Nigeria’s streets. This early success led her to host the popular MITV Live, produced by Segun Odegbami and Tunde Kelani.
Furthermore, Funmi Iyanda’s passion for sports journalism allowed her to cover significant events such as the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup, the All Africa Games in Zimbabwe, and the Olympic Games in Sydney and Athens. Her dedication and expertise in sports journalism earned her recognition and respect within the industry.
In the year 2000, Funmi Iyanda launched her own talk show called New Dawn with Funmi, which initially aired on NTA 10 Lagos. The show became a hit and went on to become NTA’s longest-running independently produced show. With a focus on exposing social injustices faced by vulnerable groups, particularly women and children, Funmi Iyanda used her platform to bring attention to important issues in Nigerian society.
Apart from her television work, Funmi Iyanda has contributed to various publications, including Tempo Magazine, Farafina Magazine, PM NEWS, The Punch, Daily Trust, and Vanguard Newspapers. Her thought-provoking essays and articles have provided valuable insights on a range of topics.
Philanthropy and Activism:
Funmi Iyanda is not only a media personality but also a committed philanthropist. She has been involved with organizations such as Farafina Trust and Positive Impact Youth Network, serving on their boards and contributing to their causes.
Her commitment to gender advocacy and ending violence against women led her to participate in a five-day United Nations advocacy climb up Mount Kilimanjaro in 2012. This historic expedition aimed to raise awareness about the UN’s campaign to stop violence against women and girls.
Funmi Iyanda’s multifaceted career as a talk show host, journalist, producer, and philanthropist has cemented her as one of Nigeria’s most influential media personalities. Through her groundbreaking talk show, New Dawn with Funmi, she addressed pressing social issues, amplifying the voices of the marginalized and vulnerable. With her dedication to activism and philanthropy, Funmi Iyanda continues to make a positive impact on Nigerian society. Her inspiring journey serves as a testament to the power of media and the importance of using one’s platform for the betterment of others.