Dr. Sandie Okoro (she/her/hers) served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the World Bank Group, and Vice President for Compliance at the World Bank from February 2017 to March 2022. She was also Chair of the World Bank Group Anti-Racism Task Force.
A British national and the first black woman to hold this role, Sandie was the principal advisor and spokesperson on all legal matters for the world’s leading development finance institution. She also headed the Compliance Vice Presidency that is responsible for developing and overseeing the World Bank data privacy framework based on the World Bank Group Policy on Personal Data Privacy. The two Vice Presidencies are separate and distinct. In her role as Chair for the World Bank Group Anti-Racism Task Force, Sandie brought the topics of race and racial equity at the forefront of Bank Group staff and operational matters, convened discussions and proposed action steps to help ensure racism and racial inequalities have no place in the institution, its operations, and the countries it serves.
Prior to joining the World Bank, Sandie was General Counsel for HSBC Global Asset Management, Deputy General Counsel of HSBC Retail Banking and Wealth Management, and Global General Counsel at Barings.
Sandie is an Honorary Bencher of Middle Temple in the United Kingdom (2018) and was named one of the Upstanding 100 Leading Ethnic Minority Executives (2016), Top 20 Global General Counsel (2019) by the Financial Times, and was recognized as Britain’s 5th most influential person of African and African Caribbean heritage by Powerlist (2018). She holds Honorary Doctorates in Law from City University London (2014), London Southbank University (2018), and her alma mater Birmingham University (2019). Sandie received a lifetime achievement award from the UK Black Solicitors Network (2016), was named one of the Power 100 Women by City A.M. and 100 Women to Watch by Female FTSE Board.
Sandie was appointed inaugural Chair of the UK-based charity WOW-Women of the World Festivals in June 2021. She received the Howard University 2019 Vanguard Women Award for her accomplishments as a woman of color who has blazed the trail and her commitment to mentoring young women and advancing the rights of women and girls globally. She is also the recipient of the Beyond the Glass Ceiling Award presented by the Leadership Institute for Women of Color Attorneys (2019), the Chambers 100 Outstanding Global General Counsel (2019), and an honoree of Harvard Law’s 7th Annual International Women’s Day Portrait Exhibit (2020).
Sandie is an ardent defender and champion for women empowerment, gender equality, and justice for all. Outside of work, Sandie is a Governor of the Royal Shakespeare Company, and prior to joining the World Bank Group, she was a council member of the human rights organization JUSTICE, Ambassador for the Law Society’s Diversity Access Scheme and sat on the Equality Standards Panel of the Premier League.