James MworiaJames Mworia



Occupational Information

Job Title: Managing Director & CEO of Centum Investment Company

Professional History

James Mworia is the Managing Director and CEO of Centum Investment Company, the largest listed investment company in East Africa. He became CEO in 2008.   But in 2001, he started at Centum as a filing clerk, despite having a law degree and other financial and accounting credentials.  He rose through the ranks to lead the company.  Since he took the helm, Centum has grown to manage direct and third-party assets of approximately $1.8 billion USD.

James has also led Centum in an ambitious geographical expansion plan that has seen the company venture to several African countries and is developing some of the largest integrated mixed used developments in East Africa.

James is an advocate of the High Court of Kenya, a chartered financial analyst charter holder, a chartered global management accountant, a fellow of the Kenyan Institute of Management, and a member of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya. He is also a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader.  James also serves on the boards of several organizations, including Sidian Bank, Nairobi Securities Exchange, Nairobi Bottlers Limited, General Motors East Africa Limited, and Lewa Wildlife Conservancy.

In 2022, he was re-appointed the Chancellor of Machakos University by President Uhuru Kenyatta for a period of five years.  He became Chancellor of Machakos University in 2016, the same year the University awarded him an Honorary Doctorate.


Bachelor of Laws from the University of Nairobi
Honorary Doctorate from Machakos University
CFA charter
Certified Public Accountant
Chartered Management Accountant


2012 Archbishop Desmond Tutu Leadership Fellow

Featured News

Norman Smit
21 June 2022

2017 Tutu Fellow Mimi Kalinda recounts how the big story that revolved around Archbishop Desmond Tutu as she was growing up was courage, and really being fearless. And also timely leadership. Leadership is contextual and time-sensitive, she says. In this Tutu Talk, hear how Mimi dedicates herself to building a critical mass of African stories that need to be told.  Mimi is a communications professional and entrepreneur. 

TutuTalks are a series collaboration between the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation and the African Leadership Institute, and it is a platform for African leaders who embody the values and ethics displayed by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu throughout his life of service.

Norman Smit
30 May 2022

In this TutuTalk in the series collaboration between the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation and the African Leadership Institute, Hopewell Chin'ono, a 2008 Tutu Fellow and award-winning Zimbabwean journalist explains how he switched his goals from law to journalism and the ethical underpinning beneath that decision.

In his Tutu Talk titled "The Journalist's Calling - Exposing the truth in the face of oppression", Hopewell says journalists must be driven by a clear understanding of what is right and just to be able to report resolutely on the truth and endure the oppression that ensues.

Norman Smit
16 May 2022

The first Tutu Talk of 2022 - in partnership with the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation - features Aidan Eyakuze, a 2006 Tutu Fellow and Executive Director of TWAWEZA East Africa. Hear how this Tanzanian activist unpacks the essence of courageous leadership and the humility needed to do what is just.

Aidan says that “I took that courage of conviction and action from the Arch. It’s not about you. Humility isn’t about thinking less of yourself. It is about thinking of yourself, less. Understanding you have a deep worth as a human being, talents and skills. Humility is employing those skills for the greater good. From there comes a great strength.”

Jackie Chimhanzi
20 April 2022

The African Leadership Institute is pleased to announce the Associates who have been selected for the 2022 Class of the Tutu Fellowship programme. As has been the case with previous cohorts, the people selected are exceptional emerging African leaders. AFLI received more than 330 nominations of outstanding quality from across Africa, from which the cohort was selected. They are from the following countries: Cameroon, Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritania, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda and Zimbabwe. 

A few candidates are included this year who were selected in 2020 but who could not attend that cohort due to COVID restrictions. The selected candidates demonstrate the incredible wealth and breadth of leadership talent that exists in Africa’s young people, which bodes well for Africa’s future.


Tutu Fellowship COVID-19 News

Tutu Fellows have been active in addressing the challenges Africa is facing due to the coronavirus pandemic.  We have a new section highlighting some of the work being done by the Fellowship.

About AFLI



The African Leadership Institute (AFLI) is unique among leadership initiatives in that it focuses on building the capacity and capability of visionary and strategic leadership across the continent. Developing exceptional leaders representing all spheres of society, the Institute’s flagship programme is the prestigious Archbishop Tutu Leadership Fellowship. Offering a multifaceted learning experience and run in partnership with Oxford University, it is awarded annually to 20-25 carefully chosen candidates, nominated from across Africa. Alumni of the African Leadership Institute form a dynamic network of Fellows passionately committed to the continent’s transformation, bridging the divide between nations and ensuring that Africa is set centre-stage in global affairs.