United States’ 7th Powerful Business Executive- Adebayo Ogunlesi


Mr. Adebayo Ogunlesi, was born to the family of Prof. & Mrs. T.O. Ogunlesi of Makun, Sagamu, Ogun State, Nigeria. His father was the first Nigerian Professor of Medicine. He attended King’s College, Lagos, Nigeria, after which he received his B.A. with first class honours in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Oxford University, his J.D. magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School and his M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.

He travelled to England to earn an honours degree from Oxford University, then entered a joint law-business degree programme at Harvard University in the late 1970s. At the law school, he was one of just three non-Americans in his class. “There was a guy from Saudi Arabia, a guy from Iran and me,” he joked with the New York Times’s Andrew Ross Sorkin. “When I resumed at Harvard, I  thought that all of us would go back to our countries, become rich, and endow chairs. I hope the Iranian and Saudi did, because I never endowed a chair.”

Adebayo Ogunlesi is currently Chairman and Managing Partner of Global Infrastructure Partners, a $15 billion joint venture whose initial investors included Credit Suisse and General Electric. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of Goldman Sachs. Prior to his current role, he was Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Client Officer of Credit Suisse, based in New York. He previously served as a member of Credit Suisse’s Executive Board and Management Council and chaired the Chairman’s Board. Previously, he was the Global Head of

Investment Banking at Credit Suisse. Since joining Credit Suisse in 1983, Mr. Ogunlesi has advised clients on strategic transactions and financings in a broad range of industries and has worked on transactions in North and South America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Prior to joining Credit Suisse, Mr. Ogunlesi was an attorney in the corporate practice group of the New York law firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore. From 1980-81 he served as a law clerk to Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall of the United States Supreme Court.

Ogunlesi is a member of the District of Columbia Bar Association. He was a lecturer at Harvard Law School and the Yale School of Organization and Management, where he taught a course on transnational investment projects in emerging countries.

He is married to an optometrist, Dr. Amelia Quist-Ogunlesi, and the family is blessed with one son.

Adebayo Ogunlesi is a leading executive at Credit Suisse First Boston Corporation (CSFB), an arm of the Zurich-based global investment bank with offices on six continents. In February 2002, he was named head of CSFB’s investment banking group. The rise of this Harvard-educated lawyer prompted Time magazine to name him to its “People to Watch in International Business” list a few weeks later, and Ogunlesi was also ranked by Fortune magazine as the seventh most powerful black executive in the United States.

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