Emirati Women’s Day, first inaugurated on August 28, 2015 by Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, known as The Mother of the UAE, has come to be known as a special day celebrating the achievements of Emirati women across past and present.
This year’s theme has been announced as: "Women: Ambitions & Inspiration for Next 50 Years," by HH Sheikha Fatima.
With the 6th edition almost upon us, the Abu Dhabi SME Hub wants to take this chance to reflect on the successes of a selection of Emirati women that continue to lead by example.
Noura Al Kaabi
Her Excellency Noura Al Kaabi has held many venerable roles throughout her career as a politician and businesswoman, and is one of the most prominent Emirati women in the country. She is currently a Cabinet Member and the Minister of Culture and Youth, named for the latter role during July 2020.
Al Kaabi is also a Chairwoman of the Media Zone Authority - Abu Dhabi (MZA) and twofour54. She is also a board member of the UAE’s National Media Council, Abu Dhabi Media, Image Nation, the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and the United Arab Emirates University.
Throughout her career, she has been recognized on multiple occasions for her various contributions to the UAE, as well as the global community.
In 2011 and 2012, Arabian Business magazine listed her as one of the “100 Most Powerful Arab Women,” and Foreign Policy Magazine included her in its ‘Top 100 Global Thinkers’ list in 2013. In 2020, South Korean President Moon Jae-in presented her with the "Diplomatic Service Medal," in recognition for her efforts to enhance the relations between the UAE and South Korea, by encouraging the launch of cultural and creative exchange programmes between the two countries.
Maryam Eid AlMheiri
Another notable member of twofour54, where she serves as Vice Chair (previously CEO and COO), Her Excellency Maryam Eid Almheiri is the Director General of the Abu Dhabi Government Media Office, CEO of the Media Zone Authority for Abu Dhabi.
Through her efforts, an entity like twofour54 has grown to exceptional heights, becoming one of the region’s go-to media and audiovisual production destinations in the MENA region.
Raja Easa Al Gurg
You can’t discuss the UAE’s most influential women without mentioning Dr. Raja Easa Al Gurg, Vice Chairperson and Managing Director of the Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group (ESAG). A well-known businesswoman in the region, she has achieved laurels for her leadership of the Group under the tutelage of her father, the Chairman, H.E. Easa Saleh Al Gurg, KCVO, CBE. Her counsel and valuable insights have significantly contributed to the growth and expansion of ESAG.
A veteran businesswoman in her own right, Dr. Al Gurg has carved a unique niche for herself in the region due to her support and encouragement of Arab women entrepreneurs. She is the President of Dubai Business Women Council; Board member of the Dubai Chamber Of Commerce & Industry (DCCI) and Dubai Women’s Association.
She was ranked first in the 2020 listing of Forbes Middle East's ‘100 Power Businesswomen in the Middle East’ and second in the 2019 listing of ‘Women Heading Family Businesses’. She was listed 89th among ‘The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women’ by Forbes for 2020.
In 2020, Dr Raja Al Gurg was awarded the Legion of Honor, Chevalier (Knight) by President of France Emmanuel Macron, in appreciation of her outstanding efforts in strengthening the exceptional partnership between France and the UAE.
Aisha Bin Bishr
Her Excellency Dr. Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr is the Director General of the Smart Dubai Office, the government entity entrusted with Dubai’s city-wide smart transformation.
In addition to her responsibilities at the Smart Dubai Office, HE is the Chairperson of the Dubai Future Council for Digital Transactions, part of the Dubai Future Councils initiative. Dr. Aisha is also the Chairperson of the SDG 11 Global Council, and serves as a Member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Councils, The Fourth Industrial Revolution’s Smart Cities Readiness Index Team also led by WEF, and the World Happiness Council where she heads The Global Council of Happy Cities. Her Excellency is also a Board Member of the Higher Colleges of Technology, UAE and a Non-Executive Director at Emaar Developments’ Board.
She is considered an acclaimed digital transformation and smart cities thought leader internationally, and is the first female executive to lead the transformation of a smart city globally.
In 2019, Arabian Business magazine selected her as one of the world’s most influential Arabs that year.