As a child, Patricia Bebia Mawa dreamed of being a lawyer. Her current job is quite far from that dream, but considering she calls her media career “a divine orchestration,” I don’t think her inner child is kicking up that much of a fuss.
Raised in Nigeria, Mawa learned early on that “success is never presented to you, but comes as a result of what you present to the world.” In 2000 she got the opportunity to come to Canada thanks to a training program run by CBC television, and chose to stay here to pursue further education. While studying at the Algonquin College of Science and Technology, she met the man who would become her husband: Moses A. Mawa. Together, they produced the pilot for Planet Africa and, in 2002, signed a deal with OMNI TV. Now syndicated worldwide, Planet Africa focuses on “success stories, unity a well as to enlighten and entertain the world about the experiences and aspirations of people of African Heritage, wherever they live on the planet.”
In 2004, they created the Planet Africa Awards program. Broadcast by the Planet Africa Network, these awards honour those who prove to be excellent role models. In 2010, they created the Diversity Awards, “to recognize individuals who further harmony and innovation as well as harness the benefits of diversity.”
The Mawa empire also extends into the publishing industry. The first publication,Planet Africa Magazine, launched in 2005. “We started Planet Africa Magazine to document our history, share our stories and inspire the African Diaspora to aspire for excellence,” Mawa explains. Then, in 2012, came Diversity Magazine, a publication “to inspire, transform, empower, showcase, celebrate and integrate exceptional elements of our mosaic.” Up next: Destiny Magazine. Obviously very dear to her heart, Mawa says she wept when she saw the final design. To make the whole situation even sweeter, on the day of its launch, Mawa and her husband will be presented with Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee Medals.
With so many projects on her table and many more in the pipeline, plus a family at home, how does Mawa keep going? “I love what I do,” she says. “It is a blessing to have platforms that inspire and empower.”
Mawa’s devotion to her current line of work shines through in every word she says, and it is easy to believe her when she refers to it all as a preordained plan that she has wholeheartedly accepted.
“The greatest misfortune that can befall a person is walking this earth without leaving their mark on it. What has kept me going is doing everything I do with a sense of purpose.”
It is safe to say that she has left her mark on this earth, and that she will continue to do so in the future.