Profile of Dr.( MRS.) Aderonke Somade

Founder and National President, Assiociation of Women in Forestry and Environment(AWIFE)

Dr. (Mrs.) Aderonke Folasade Adio-Somade was born on the 1st of December 1954 and hails from Ile-oluji in Ile-Oluji Local Government Area of Ondo State. She is from a core religious background, her father was late Very Revd. Fola Adebusoye and her mother Chief (Mrs.) B.K. Adebusoye (Yeyemeso of Ile-Oluji) a successful textile tycoon both of them from prominent families in Ile-Oluji. Young Aderonke attended St.Luke’s primary School Molete, Ibadan for her elementary education. She gained admission to St. Louis Grammar School, Mokola, Ibadan in 1966 and completed her secondary School education in 1970. She attended Federal School of Science, Lagos between 1972-1974 where she obtained G.C.E (London) Advanced Level Certificate.

In 1976, the University of Lagos admitted her for a degree programme in Botany which she completed in 1976 and bagged Second Class Upper Division. For her NYSC scheme she served in Lagos State, and after her service she took up appointment with Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Akure, Ondo State as an Assistant Conservator of Forest II between 1980 and 1983. In 1982, she obtained a Master Degree in Forestry from the University of Ibadan. Dissatisfied with the red-tapism and bureaucratic nature of the core Civil Service, and with her quest for independence and investigate career development she transferred her service to the Forestry Research Institute (FRIN) as a Research Officer I in 1983.

Driven by her strong determination to get to the peak of her academic status she was awarded a Ph.D in Forestry by University of Ibadan in year 2000 under the sponsorship of the World Bank Assisted National Agricultural Research Project (NARP)

At FRIN,Dr. Adio-Somade rose through the rungs of the career progression ladder from the post of research Officer Grade I (R. 0. I) in 1983 to Director in 2010 a position she has held till date. She is a seasoned Forester and the Head of Sustainable Forest Management of the Institute. Her scope of operation covers research into the growth, establishment, improvement, yield and management of economic tree crops for plantation establishment. Also research into collection, processing, testing and storage as well as distribution of exotic and indigenous forest seeds for various afforestation programmes in Nigeria. As proof of her scholarstic and research excellence Dr. Aderonke Adio-Somade has to her credit a book and several other publications as seminars/conference papers, as well as journal papers. For her contribution and selfless service to humanity Dr. Somade Adio has received several awards and accolades from academic and humanitarian service among which are:

 Crystal Magazine Merit 2008
 African Icon of her Generation Award 2009

militant and result oriented forester to the core, good time manager and a lively, affectionate and charismatic personality who ironically is humble to a fault. A very creative and innovative woman with high regard for finesse.
Though very frank and principled she is a kind and compassionate mother who hardly condones injustice, deprivation and oppression especially to the feminine gender. A dogged woman liberation fighter and gender neutral fender of truth who has proved on many instances that what a man can do a woman can do better.
Worried by the alarming rate at which the Nigerian environment is being devastated by the negative attitude and activities of her citizenry especially to environmental protection issues and moved by pitiable rate at which average Nigerian woman bears the brunt of the flagrant abuse of the God-given environment, she decided unilaterally in 1999 to float the association of Women in Forestry and Environment (AWIFE) an NGO saddled with the responsibility of increasing the participation of women in managing forest resources in sustainable and to allow women participate in decision making affecting forestry.
This NGO is a gift and legacy for the womenfolk and her little contribution in ensuring clement environment for the Nigerian citizenry. Dr. Adio-Somade is a member of professional bodies like Forestry Association of Nigeria (FAN), international society of Tropical Foresters (ISTF) and commonwealth Foresters Association(CFA). Finally, she is happily married with children.

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