Country of Origin: Nigeria
Tribes: Hausa and Fulani
Gina Paige’s magic lies at the intersection of culture, science, and business. Her passion for helping individuals connect to their cultural identity, and her role as a bold, risk-taking pioneer have secured her a place in history. With a career that spans nearly thirty years, she has become the go-to expert on DNA-based ancestry tracing for people of African descent.
Gina’s business savvy was first tested at the age of eight when she launched a magazine to raise money for a trip to an amusement park. As an adult, she worked in corporate America with a degree in Economics from Stanford University and an MBA from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business in hand. Here, Gina honed her craft as a consumer goods marketing expert at Sara Lee and Colgate-Palmolive.
This prepared her for entrepreneurship, where she co-founded AfricanAncestry.com with Dr. Rick Kittles in 2003. AfricanAncestry.com is the first consumer DNA-testing company established to help people of African descent reconnect with their ancestral heritage using genetics. Since its founding, AfricanAncestry.com has empowered more than one million people of African descent with information on their African country and tribe of origin.
Some of the most notable people to discover their African roots with AfricanAncestry.com include Oprah Winfrey, Dr. Maya Angelou, Coretta Scott King, Chadwick Boseman, Samuel L. Jackson, Taraji P. Henson and India.Arie. Gina’s own roots trace back to the Kru of Liberia and the Fulani and Hausa of Nigeria.
Gina travels the world sharing her wisdom on culture, empowerment, and community through the lens of Black identity. As a speaker, The New York Times Travel Show, The Wall Street Journal Health Forum, TEDx ChulaVista, NAACP, Howard University, Stanford University, Smithsonian Museum of African Art, Planned Parenthood, DC Public Schools, and The Walt Disney Company are among her list of clients.
Her work has been featured on PBS’ Finding Your Roots with Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Sister Circle Live, Essence Magazine, Wall Street Journal, TV One, USA Today, Buzzfeed, The Breakfast Club with Charlamagne tha God, OkayAfrica and CNN’s Black in America series amongst others.
Because of the transformative, wide-reaching impact of her work, Gina was honored with an Honorary Doctor of Philosophy degree from Global Oved Dei Seminary University.
Awards and Accomplishments
- 30 Black Stars Award, Face2Face Africa
- African Ancestry featured in NBC’s Who Do You Think You Are?
- Black Enterprise Innovator of the Year Award Nominee
- Co-created African Ancestry Radio on SiriusXM Radio
- African Ancestry featured in PBS’s Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
- Honorary Doctor of Philosophy from Global Oved Dei Seminary University
- The Spirit of Africa Award, Miss Africa USA Pageant