Ayo Akinwolere

Ayo Akinwolere

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Factual, Sport & Lifestyle Presenter

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Ayo became one of four people of colour with a swimming world record, when he swam in one of the deepest stretches of water on earth. The former Blue Peter presenter has written for the Daily Telegraph, BBC Sport and the Independent, and appeared on Celebrity MasterChef, the Great British Bake Off and Celebrity Pointless. After moving into sports and current affairs, Ayo co-created the production company Milk First Productions, which aims to tell diverse stories and amplify diverse voices.


Ayo Akinwolere started his broadcasting career as the first black male presenter on Blue Peter. Within his first year on the show, he was nominated for the Children’s BAFTA Factual Programme of the year, for his journey back to his country of birth Nigeria. During his five years on the programme, he received another two Children’s Bafta nominations for Presenter of the Year and Programme Of The Year.

After leaving Blue Peter, Ayo was keen to broaden his broadcasting experience and made the move from children’s television to current affairs as the presenter of Inside Out. His documentary on extremism won the Factual RTS Award and a BBC Ruby Award for Programme of the year. Ayo also regularly contributes to BBC Radio 4’s Our Home Correspondent, focusing on stories based on identity and ethnicity.

A lover of sport, Ayo presented Channel 4’s Rugby coverage, was the lead anchor for Ireland’s rugby test matches from the Aviva Arena in Dublin and the co-host of the Saturday morning rugby magazine show, The Big Tackle. He’s also reported for BBC Sport on the Premier League Show, Football Focus, the Winter Olympics, and the Commonwealth Games. For CBS Sports, Ayo is the pre-and post-match lead anchor on The Golazo Show. He took over presenting duties from Mark Chapman on The Athletics flagship football podcast and celebrates stories of running on the podcast series Why I Run.

Ayo set the World Record for swimming across the deepest stretch of ocean on earth, the Palau Trench, which prompted him to create The Swim Challenge, a project which looked to prove that people of colour can swim. Ayo took fifteen non swimmers and transformed them in just under ten weeks. He uses his experience as a swimming world record holder in his keynote speeches, as an example of how teaching people how to swim can be more diverse.

An experienced event host and moderator, Ayo looked at the future of Europe with former heads of state Nicolas Sarkozy, Gerhard Schroeder, and Matteo Renzi at the Natixis Investment Managers Summit in Paris. He has worked with the BFI, hosted panels for the Radio Times TV Festival, and was the host of the Peaky Blinders premiere for the BBC.


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