Zimbabwean born accountant appointed new Ascendis CFO

Cheryl-Jane Kujenga

Healthcare group Ascendis has named Cheryl-Jane Kujenga as its new CFO with effect from December 2020.

Cheryl has held roles in various companies including being a partner at EY for nine years, where she had a dual role as an assurance partner and the strategic growth markets leader for Africa.

She is taking up the Ascendis position following her role as CFO at Adcorp, where she led the company through a balance sheet restructuring process. She later served as Adcorp’s interim CEO from October 2019 to May 2020 when she resigned from her CFO position and the board.

Cheryl has been nominated for the 2020 CFO Awards for her role at Adcorp.

She has also served on the Accounting Standards Board, South Africa for six years.

Cheryl steps into the shoes of Kieron Futter, who was Ascendis’s CFO for five years.

When  Cheryl-Jane Kujenga went back to EY in 2006 for her second stint with the company, she asked, “Where are the women?”. For Cheryl-Jane, coming back to EY was like coming back home. “EY is a very welcoming environment.

There were still a lot of people that I’d done articles with, when I rejoined,” she says. But she was also quick to prioritize creating more awareness about bringing more women into leadership roles.

Cheryl-Jane is passionate about gender parity. During her 16-year stay at EY, she started and ran a successful program to help female senior managers in audit teams improve their leadership skills.

“Women tend to get to a particular level in any organization,” she says “But when you look at the real decision-makers, there’s still a shortage of women.”

During our conversation, Cheryl-Jane elaborated on the areas to focus on to promote gender parity at the workplace.

Source – cfo