Dame Christie Toby, married to Sir Gabriel Toby, the retired Permanent Secretary and former Deputy Governor of Rivers State, is mother of three children and seven grandchildren, five of whom are in the universities. She holds a PhD in education administration and planning. She started her career in government as a teacher; was school principal for ten years and later promoted to the Ministry of Education as deputy director, rising to become a director. She was in charge of all the secondary schools in the old Rivers State that included Bayelsa State. She was a president of All Nigeria Conference of Principals of Secondary Schools, ANCOPSS.
A lay reader at St. Cyprians Anglican Church, where she worships, she is also a group leader, now serving as matron of the group. Her group’s project is the Baby Moses Home, for which eleven plots of land has been acquired to build a house to cater for children that could be thrown away by their mothers. The facility is not a motherless baby’s home but to encourage girls not to abort, to carry their pregnancies and deliver. From day one the baby could be dropped at the home rather than throw away or kill the child. At the end of a year the child could be taken back by the mother, if desired, the children whose mothers are not keen to have them back would be given to the government for adoption.
She is a fellow of the Nigerian Institute of Management, NIM, was vice president and had been chairman of Rivers State and Bayelsa State branches. She was a council member for more than ten years and is recipient of the Chris Abebe Award, the highest in NIM for hard work and philanthropy. She just finished tenure as Chief Commissioner of the Nigerian Girls Guide Association, after which she was appointed national adviser.
A home based women leader, she takes care of women at the Toby Group of Houses and she is a titled citizen of the Amayanabo of Opobo, who made her the first Ibifiri Nwagibo of Opobo Kingdom, which meant the encourager and pacesetter. As the matron of school proprietors’ association in the state, she was bagged the achiever medal by the Conference of Principals of Secondary Schools.
Published in the Business Eye’s print version, Dec 2015 edition.