Kenyan

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The Republic of Kenya is a country known for its vast and diverse cultural legacies. Home to several ethnic groups, the culture of Kenya also reflects the influences of European societies as the nation was under British colonial rule for almost a century. Jomo Kenyatta, an intellectual and politician became the founding father of the Kenyan nation and served as the leader of the nation from its independence in 1963 to his death. Home to an estimated 47 different communities, Kenya has a diverse population that includes most major ethnoracial and linguistic groups found in Africa. Not surprisingly, Kenyan culture is a rich amalgamation of the behaviors, practices, and traditions of all its inhabitant communities. It has a diverse assortment of popular music forms and musicians such as Daudi Kabaka, Fadhili William and Sukuma Bin Ongaro have helped to popularize genres of local urban music. Kenya has a long oral and written literary tradition, primarily in English and Swahili, the two official languages of the country, and has produced famous writers such as Grace Ogot, Meja Mwangi, Margaret Ogola, and Binyavanga Wainaina. This section provides you information about the life and works of famous Kenyans.
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 1 
Eliud Kipchoge
(Long-distance runner)
Eliud Kipchoge
14
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 17, 1984
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Kapsisiywa, Nandi County, Kenya
 2 
Jomo Kenyatta
(1st President of Kenya (1964–1978) and the 1st Prime Minister of Kenya (1963–1964))
Jomo Kenyatta
19
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: October 20, 1893
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Gatundu, Kenya
Died: August 22, 1978
After being held as a prisoner by the British for 9 years, anti-colonial activist Jomo Kenyatta was released shortly before Kenya achieved its independence, and became the country’s first prime minister and then its first president. The Father of the Nation, Kenyatta was also named Mzee, meaning “grand old man.”
 3 
Lupita Nyong'o
(Named One of Africa’s “50 Most Powerful Women” by Forbes in 2020)
Lupita Nyong'o
33
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: March 1, 1983
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Mexico City, Mexico

Lupita Nyong'o is one of the most popular black actresses of all time. The first Kenyan-Mexican actress to receive the prestigious Academy Award, Lupita Nyong'o has often been named in lists, such as the world's most beautiful woman. In 2020, she was named by Forbes magazine as one of Africa's 50 Most Powerful Women.

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 4 
Barack Obama Sr.
(Kenyan Official)
Barack Obama Sr.
20
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: June 18, 1936
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Rachuonyo District, Nyang'oma Kogelo
Died: November 24, 1982
Barack Obama Sr. was a Kenyan economist and the father of former U.S. president Barack Obama. He was already married when he received a scholarship to the University of Hawaii, where he met Stanley Dunham, Obama Jr.’s mother. He was blacklisted in Kenya, due to issues with President Jomo Kenyatta.
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 5 
Uhuru Kenyatta
(President of Kenya)
Uhuru Kenyatta
13
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: October 26, 1961
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Nairobi

The incumbent Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta is the leader of the Jubilee Party of Kenya. Son of Kenya’s first president, Jomo Kenyatta, he was dragged into a controversy after sweeping the 2017 re-elections by winning 98% of the total votes. However, a Supreme Court ruling dismissed all charges against him.

 6 
Deep Roy
(Actor)
Deep Roy
4
Birthdate: December 1, 1957
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
 7 
Raila Odinga
(Former Prime Minister of Kenya)
Raila Odinga
9
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: January 7, 1945
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Maseno

Raila Odinga is a Kenyan politician who has been the Leader of Opposition since 2013. From 2008 to 2013, Odinga served as the prime minister of Kenya. Before becoming the prime minister, Raila Odinga served as the Minister for Roads, Public Works, and Housing. At the African Union Commission in 2018, he was appointed High Representative for Infrastructure Development.

 8 
William Ruto
(Deputy President of Kenya)
William Ruto
49
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: December 21, 1966
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Uasin Gishu County

William Ruto is a Kenyan politician and the current Kenyan deputy president. Between 6 and 8 October 2014, Ruto served as the acting president when President Uhuru Kenyatta was in the Netherlands at the International Criminal Court. Apart from being a politician, William Ruto also owns an interest in several real estate developments, including the Weston Hotel in Kenya.  

 9 
Ali Velshi
(Host of the Show Real Money With Ali Velshi on Al Jazeera America)
Ali Velshi
3
Birthdate: October 29, 1969
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
Ali Velshi, a Kenyan-born Canadian broadcast journalist, is a familiar name in the business shows of NBC with which he has been associated after a long stint with CNN. Apart from being a business correspondent, he also reported extensively on hurricanes and the assassination of former Pakistan prime minister Benazir Bhutto. He worked for Al Jazeera America till its closure.
 10 
Wangari Maathai
(The First African Woman to Receive 'Nobel Peace Prize')
Wangari Maathai
2
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: April 1, 1940
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Ihithe, Kenya
Died: September 25, 2011

Wangari Maathai was a Kenyan environmental, social, and political activist. She achieved popularity after becoming the first African woman to be honored with the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize. She is credited with founding a non-governmental organization called The Green Belt Movement (GBM), which focuses on women's rights and environmental conservation.

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 11 
Edi Gathegi
5
Birthdate: March 10, 1979
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
 12 
Mwai Kibaki
(Former President of Kenya)
Mwai Kibaki
12
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: November 15, 1931
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Gatuyaini

Mwai Kibaki is a Kenyan politician. From 2002 to 2013, Kibaki served as the president of Kenya. Before being elected as the third president of Kenya, Kibaki served as the vice-president of Kenya from 1978 to 1988. Apart from being a politician, Kibaki is an avid golfer and is one of the most important members of the Muthaiga Golf Club.

 13 
Daniel arap Moi
(Second President of Kenya)
Daniel arap Moi
3
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: September 2, 1924
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sacho, Kenya
Died: February 4, 2020
Daniel arap Moi was a Kenyan politician best remembered for his service as the President of Kenya from 22 August 1978 to 30 December 2002. Kenya's longest-serving president, Moi was regarded by many as an authoritarian and his regime was deemed dictatorial. During his presidency, Daniel arap Moi was accused of human rights abuses by organizations like Amnesty International.
 14 
Roger Whittaker
(British Musician and Singer Known for His Trademark Whistling Ability, Baritone Singing Voice, and Guitar Skills)
Roger Whittaker
1
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: March 22, 1936
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya

Roger Whittaker is a British musician and singer-songwriter. Best known for his trademark whistling ability, baritone singing voice, and guitar skills, Whittaker is one of the best-selling artistes in the UK. Roger Whittaker forsook his teaching career to establish himself as a musician, a decision which he has never regretted. 

 15 
David Rudisha
(Middle-distance runner)
David Rudisha
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: December 17, 1988
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kilgoris, Narok County, Kenya
 16 
Richard Leakey
(Kenyan Paleoanthropologist and Chairman of the ‘Kenya Wildlife Service’)
Richard Leakey
3
Birthdate: December 19, 1944
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
Died: January 2, 2022

Born to anthropologist parents, Richard Leakey initially worked as a safari guide. On an expedition to Ethiopia, he and his men stumbled upon Koobi Fora, a site where they unearthed numerous tools and fossils. The Kenyan paleoanthropologist later lost his legs in a plane crash and now uses artificial limbs.

 17 
Ngugi wa Thiong'o
(Writer and Academic who writes primarily in Gikuyu)
Ngugi wa Thiong'o
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 5, 1938
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kamiriithu, Kenya
 18 
Joy Adamson
(Naturalist and Author of the Book 'Born Free', Which Documents Her Experience In Raising a Lion Club)
Joy Adamson
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 20, 1910
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Opava, Czechia
Died: January 3, 1980

Best known for her iconic book Born Free, which describes her experiences of raising a lion cub named Elsa, Joy Adamson was a noted Austro-Hungarian wildlife conservationist. She excelled in music and medicine in her younger days and later settled in Kenya with her third husband, conservationist George Adamson.

 19 
Beryl Markham
(Renowned aviator and author who was the first woman to fly an east-to-west solo route across the Atlantic Ocean)
Beryl Markham
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: October 26, 1902
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Rutland, England, United Kingdom
Died: August 3, 1986
 20 
Louis Leakey
(Paleoanthropologist and Archaeologist)
Louis Leakey
2
Birthdate: August 7, 1903
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kabete
Died: October 1, 1972

Son of British missionaries in Kenya, Louis Leakey spent his early days amid the Kikuyu people near Nairobi. With an elite education at Cambridge, he later revolutionized the fields of paleoanthropology and archaeology. His study of fossils in East Africa proved humans were older than previously thought.

 21 
Brigid Kosgei
(Marathon runner)
Brigid Kosgei
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 20, 1994
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sinon, Kapsowar, Kenya
 22 
Elsa Majimbo
(Comedian)
Elsa Majimbo
3
Birthdate: June 29, 2001
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
 23 
Bernard Lagat
(Athlete)
Bernard Lagat
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: December 12, 1974
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kapsabet, Kenya
 24 
Warsan Shire
(Writer)
Warsan Shire
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: August 1, 1988
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kenya
 25 
Amina Mohamed
(Kenyan Lawyer, Diplomat, and Cabinet Secretary)
Amina Mohamed
0
Listed In: Lawyers & Judges
Birthdate: October 5, 1961
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kakamega, Kenya
Amina Mohamed is a Kenyan lawyer, diplomat, and cabinet secretary. She is the current Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Culture and Heritage. An influential political figure, Amina Mohamed previously served as the Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs from 20 May 2013 to 5 February 2018 and then as the Cabinet Secretary for Education from 5 February 2018 to 2 March 2019.
 26 
Dedan Kimathi
(Kenyan Military Leader and Revolutionary)
Dedan Kimathi
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: October 31, 1920
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Nyeri County, Kenya
Died: February 18, 1957
Dedan Kimathi was a Kenyan military leader and revolutionary. He is best remembered as the military leader of the Mau Mau rebellion. Kimathi led the armed military resistance against the British colonial regime that occupied Kenya in the 1950s. Today, Dedan Kimathi is recognized as a national hero and is revered for his struggle against British colonial rule in Kenya.
 27 
Tom Mboya
(One of the Founding Fathers of Republic of Kenya and First Secretary General of ‘KANU’)
Tom Mboya
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 15, 1930
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Kilima Mbogo, Kenya
Died: July 5, 1969
 28 
Julius Yego
(Athlete)
Julius Yego
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 4, 1989
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Nandi County, Kenya
 29 
Kiran Shah
(Actor, Stuntman)
Kiran Shah
0
Birthdate: September 28, 1956
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
 30 
Dennis Kipruto Kimetto
(Long-distance runner)
Dennis Kipruto Kimetto
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 22, 1984
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Kenya
 31 
Mary Jepkosgei Keitany
(Long-distance runner, Marathon runner)
Mary Jepkosgei Keitany
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 18, 1982
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kabarnet, Baringo County, Kenya
 32 
Michael Olunga
(Association football player)
Michael Olunga
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: March 26, 1994
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
 33 
Margaret Wambui
(Middle-distance runner)
Margaret Wambui
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 15, 1995
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Nyeri, Kenya
 34 
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga
(Kenyan Political Leader Who Played a Key Role in Kenya's Struggle for Independence)
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: 1911
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bondo, Kenya
Died: January 20, 1994
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga was a Kenyan political leader who played an important role in Kenya's struggle for independence. After Kenya's independence, Oginga Odinga served as the country's first vice-president from 12 December 1964 to 14 April 1966. Jaramogi Oginga Odinga is best remembered for his autobiography Not Yet Uhuru.
 35 
Willy Paul
(Songwriter)
Willy Paul
0
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: September 1, 1993
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kasarani, Kenya
 36 
Faith Kipyegon
(Middle-distance runner)
Faith Kipyegon
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 10, 1994
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bomet, Kenya
 37 
Kipchoge Keino
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 17, 1940
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Nandi County, Kenya
 38 
Geoffrey Mutai
(Marathon runner)
Geoffrey Mutai
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: October 7, 1981
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Koibatek District, Kenya
 39 
Margaret Kenyatta
(First Lady)
Margaret Kenyatta
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: April 8, 1964
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kenya
 40 
Samuel Kamau Wanjiru
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 10, 1986
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Nyahururu, Kenya
Died: May 15, 2011
 41 
Kuki Gallmann
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: June 1, 1943
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Treviso, Italy Treviso, Kingdom of Italy Italy

Born to Italian writer Cino Boccazzi, Kuki Gallmann later moved to Kenya with her husband and son, both of whom she lost in separate accidents. Taking up Kenyan citizenship, she focused on ecological conservation. He bestselling book I Dreamed Of Africa was later made into a movie.

 42 
Gurinder Chadha
(Film director)
Gurinder Chadha
1
Birthdate: January 10, 1960
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Nairobi, British Kenya Kenya
 43 
Vera Sidika
(Model, Socialite)
Vera Sidika
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: September 30, 1989
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Mombasa, Kenya
 44 
Martha Karua
(Kenyan Politician and Women's Rights Activist)
Martha Karua
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: September 22, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kirinyaga District, Kenya
Martha Karua is a Kenyan politician who served as the Minister for Justice, National Cohesion and Constitutional Affairs from 7 December 2005 to 6 April 2009. She also served as the Minister for Water Resources Management and Development from 3 January 2003 to 24 November 2005. Martha Karua is also a women's rights activist.
 45 
Asbel Kiprop
(Athlete)
Asbel Kiprop
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 30, 1989
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Uasin Gishu County, Kenya
 46 
Wilson Kipsang Kiprotich
(Long-distance running)
Wilson Kipsang Kiprotich
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: March 15, 1982
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Keiyo District, Kenya
 47 
Peter Tabichi
(Educator)
Peter Tabichi
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: 1982 AD
Birthplace: Nyamira County, Kenya
 48 
Edward Cheserek
(Long-distance runner)
Edward Cheserek
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 2, 1994
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Kenya
 49 
Auma Obama
(Kenyan-British Journalist, Community Activist and Half-Sister of Barack Obama)
Auma Obama
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: 1960 AD
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya
Auma Obama is a Kenyan-British journalist, community activist, author, and sociologist. She is also famous as the half-sister of former American President Barack Obama. Auma Obama is perhaps best known for her association with a non-profit organization called Sauti Kuu Foundation, where she serves as the executive chairwoman. The organization aims at helping orphans struggling with poverty in Kenya.
 50 
Charles Bukeko
1
Birthdate: July 10, 1962
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Busia, Kenya
Died: July 18, 2020