On August 28, 2022, the UAE celebrates its seventh annual Emirati Women’s Day.

As an occasion to empower Emirati women, this special day was launched by Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Al Ketbi, the wife of the late Sheikh Zayed and Mother of the Nation, in 2015.

Back in April, Sheikha Fatima announced the theme of this year’s Emirati Women’s Day would be ‘Inspiring Reality… Sustainable Future’.

Per WAM, Sheikha Fatima praised the women of the UAE saying, “Emirati women have proven there is no task that is impossible due to their hard work and innovation.”

From reaching Mars to competing in the Olympics, Emirati women are constantly defying stereotypes in every field and putting UAE on the global map.

Keeping this in mind, Emirates Woman has championed all the incredible Emirati women who work on a daily basis to inspire future generations.

Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum


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As a role model to many, Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority is constantly aspiring to build an environment to uplift Dubai’s creative arts scene. She always highlights how Dubai Culture focuses on sustainable initiatives that make it a game-changer in the region.

As she continues to foster her role at Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, she’s constantly vouching for women to achieve great things and to receive more opportunities in the country to flourish.

HH Sheikha Sana Al Maktoum

Emirates Woman’s April 2021 – ‘The Gratitude Issue’ cover star, Her Highness Sheikha Sana Al Maktoum is a proud entrepreneur and founder of an eponymous jewellery brand, Sana Al Maktoum Fine Jewellery. Last year, the down-to-earth Sheikha debuted the brand with the ‘My Treasure’ collection, using butterflies, a tribute and a symbol of her gratitude to her late grandmother, after whom she was named. Each piece honours the memory of the elder Sheikha Sana Al Maktoum, one of Dubai’s most remarkable women, as it encourages women to embark on a journey to find their inner strength and purpose.

“Butterflies are symbols of transformation and beauty and my grandmother grew up at a time when options were limited for women, but she didn’t let that stop her,” Sheikha Sana told Emirates Woman in an exclusive interview. “She found a way to shine and to help others shine which is why I consider her a treasure.” Taking inspiration from her grandmother has taken the young Sana on her path to entrepreneurship and womanhood. Her Highness’ warm and gentle nature belies her fierce determination to stand on her own two feet and her keen awareness of the world around her.

HH Sheikha Mahra Al Maktoum

Sheikha Mahra Al Maktoum Expo 2020

Her Highness Sheikha Mahra bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, daughter of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has made a mark in the UAE by supporting local designers at various events. From the Icons Exhibition to visiting various pavilions at Expo 2020, Sheikha Mahra is constantly recognising emerging talent in the region.

HH Sheikha Latifah Al Maktoum


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As an accomplished equestrian rider, Her Highness Sheikha Latifah Al Maktoum qualified for the Beijing Olympics in 2008, when she was only 22 years old. It was a history-making moment for the country as she became one of the first women to represent the United Arab Emirates at the Olympics. She has gone on to carve an impressive equestrian and showjumping career.

In an interview with Emirates Woman, our September 2020 said, “I always try to create small goals that amount to a larger big-picture goal.” Deemed a perfectionist, no task is completed without full dedication for this sheikha. Overall, this Emirati International showjumper has been an Olympian and three-time UAE national champion.

HH Sheikha Mozah Al Maktoum

Sheikha Mozah

Emirates Woman’s November 2020 – The Fine Jewellery Issue cover star Sheikha Mozah Al Maktoum has risen to great heights in the aviation industry, by being the first Emirati woman to join the Dubai Police as a helicopter pilot and serving her country. Having broken down many barriers during her career thus far and paving the way for many women in the region, Sheikha Mozah says she’s done this by staying “head on with full force”.

HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Al Ketbi

Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed

Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Al Ketbi is one of the leading female figures in the UAE. As the wife of the late Sheikh Zayed, the Father of the Nation, Sheikha Fatima is known as the Mother of the Nation. She has always been passionate about evolving women’s rights in the UAE, even from the unification of the emirates. So much so, that she sponsored the establishment of the first-ever dedicated women’s society in the UAE – the Abu Dhabi Women’s Development Association, which launched on February 8, 1973. Two years late, in August 1975, the General Women’s Union was established and Sheikha Fatima was appointed chairwoman, a position she holds until this day. Since then, Sheikha Fatima has gone on to establish over 30 other organisations and initiatives aiming to support the development and growth of women in the region. “The women of our nation should be proud of the vital role they play in the service of our country,” she has previously said. “Women are partners in the struggle, in the past, present and future. There is nothing achieved by the Union of our State that has not benefited women.”

HH Sheikha Mariam bint Khalifa bin Saif al Nahyan


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From celebrating diversity to design elements that are meant to last forever, Her Highness Sheikha Mariam bint Khalifa bin Saif Al Nahyan is inspired by her rich heritage and has beautifully incorporated this into her passion for jewellery in her brand MKS Jewellery. By infusing unique elements into the design process, this collection was born to empower women.

Her Highness Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed Al Maktoum

UAE flag

As the eldest daughter of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Her Highness Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed Al Maktoum has followed in her father’s footsteps to ensure she’s making a difference. In 2003, Sheikha Manal – wife of His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs – founded Dubai Ladies Club, which is located in Jumeirah. She went on to launch the Dubai Women’s Establishment in 2006, an organization that encourages and facilitates the participation of Emirati women in the workforce and society. Her most recent role in championing the role of women in the UAE is Chairperson of the UAE Gender Balance Council. The main aims of the Council are to reduce the gender gap across all government sectors and to enhance the UAE’s ranking in global competitiveness reports on gender equality.

Her Excellency Dr. Maryam Matar

Dr. Maryam Matar

For the past 16 years, the UAE Genetic Diseases Association has been conducting pioneering research in the field under the strong leadership of its founder and chairperson Her Excellency Dr Maryam Mohamed Fatma Matar. What led Her Excellency to place a focus on genetic disorders in her medical career was the evidence she came across during her studies and the start of her career.
“Worldwide evidence suggests that prevention of genetic disorders is the most effective way to reduce, and manage genetic disorders and I decided to dedicate myself to more learning and implementing this evidence to better handle our national health challenge,” she previously told Emirates Woman. This led her to found the volunteer-led NGO to tackle some of the most serious genetic diseases known to humans including genetic blood disorders, Alzheimer’s, Autism, cancers of different kinds, celiac diseases and more.

HE Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi

sheikha lubna

Her Excellency Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi is a groundbreaking female figure in the UAE. In 2004, she became the first woman in the country to hold a ministerial position after she was appointed Minister of Economy. Throughout the years, Sheikha Luba has held a number of minister positions in the UAE government including Minister of Foreign Trade, Minister of International Cooperation and Development and Minister of Tolerance, a position which she held until 2017. “The UAE has established itself as a role model for the region in this field, opening the door for women to invest in the business and establish their own enterprises,” she said in 2017 at the Women’s Economic Empowerment held in Dubai. “Today, we have thousands of businesswomen running investments worth billions of dirhams. We look forward to sharing our experience and insights with participants at this important global event.

HE Dr. Amal Al Qubaisi

HE Dr. Amal Al Qubaisi

Her Excellency Dr Amal Al Qubaisi became the first woman elected into the UAE’s Federal National Council in 2006. Then, nine years later, in 2015 she became the President of the FNC, making her the region’s first female leader of a national assembly. She held this p[position until 2019. While she was still in her role as President of the FNC, Dr Amal made a speech at the Eurasian Women’s Forum, highlighting the importance of women in the UAE. “As a female leader in my country, the UAE, I am proud of our strategic and lifelong partnerships with men,” she said. “To me, peace is like a graceful eagle that needs both of its two wings; women and men, to soar high in the sky to reach its destination.”

HE Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri

Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri

Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri is the UAE Minister of Climate Change and the Environment. From addressing sessions at the United Nations to achieving gender equality and empowering women in climate change, she continues to play a crucial in mitigating the current climate crisis as her actions are all about change.

HE Reem Al Hashimi

HE Reem Al Hashimi

Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimi was hugely instrumental in Dubai’s winning bid to host Expo 202o. As well as being Director-General for the Dubai Expo 2020, she is also the UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation. She became a cabinet minister in 2008. She is also chair of Dubai Cares, a children’s education charity established by Sheikh Mohammed in 2007.

HE Noura Al Kaabi

Her Excellency Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi is an Emirati businesswoman who is the Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development for the United Arab Emirates. She has held the position since October 2017. Previously she was the Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs from February 2016 to October 2017. Moreover, Al Kaabi was previously appointed as a member of the Federal National Council (FNC) from Abu Dhabi.

HE Sheikha Hind bint Majid Al Qasimi

Her Excellency Sheikha Hind bint Majid Al Qasimi is the Chairperson of the Sharjah Business Women’s Council (SBWC), an organization that is inspiring entrepreneurs all over the UAE. Her Excellency discusses with us how the Council is championing an equitable world for businesswomen and entrepreneurs. She believes that entrepreneurial training is an effective way of bringing women into the mainstream, as it leads to overall economic and social development.

HE Sheikha Bodour Bint Sultan Al Qasimi

Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi

This Sharjah royal was the first Arab woman to be appointed President of the International Publishers Association. She is involved in a host of regional and international initiatives to promote youth and children’s empowerment in the UAE. As the founding member of Kalimat Group, she is involved in promoting literacy, reading culture and book accessibility. Her efforts are truly making a difference in the region.

Fatma Al Mheiri


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Fatma Almheiri, our cover star for April’s – The Integrity Issue, is constantly inspiring women in this region. With a keen passion for sartorial pieces, Almheiri started her own fashion label, Venus The Label, which converts tarot card prints into wearable pieces. As well as being a proud founder and creative director, she is also the communications manager of Museum of the Future. Managing multiple roles, she is an inspiration for generations to come.

Sarah Al-Amiri

Sarah Al-Amiri

While currently holding the position of Chairperson of the UAE Space Agency, Sarah Al Amiri served as the deputy project manager of the Mars mission which followed after her passionate interest in the field. Having been fascinated by space since she was 12, Amiri has made big contributions to the world of science in the UAE.

Sheikha Shamma

Sheikha Shamma bint Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan

Her Highness Sheikha Shamma bint Sultan bin Khalifa Al Nahyan became the first GCC woman to be appointed into a global and prestigious position. Per the Abu Dhabi Media Office, Her Highness has been appointed as one of the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center women leaders in the Energy and Climate Fellowship Program. “Women’s voices are imperative in all spaces, but especially in the context of the climate crisis, and I’m confident this initiative will continue to create great impact,” she said.

Yasmin Baker

Yasmin Baker

Emirati aerialist and aerial Nike brand ambassador Yasmin Baker is all about breaking down stereotypes. “There are so many Emirati and Arab women who champion bravery and dispel stereotypes about capability and about the region in general,” she previously told Emirates Woman. “It is so empowering for the current times and for this part of the world. Arab women have worked hard to break the ice in politics, academia, business, science, sports, arts and to normalize the idea men and women can achieve if we are resilient.”

Alia Al Neyadi

As the first professional Emirati ballerina, Alia Al Neyadi is a creative and passionate human being who pours love into whatever she does. ‘Love is life, it is living and being in this mystery and adventure we call,” she previously told us. “Everything we do is for love and everything we feel is because of love. All my decisions have been based on my love for my art, love makes you brave and committed to the journey ahead, because without love, we are empty.”

Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi

Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi

As President and Director of the Sharjah Art Foundation, Sheikha Hoor is a curator who continues to establish herself as a catalyst of change in this Emirate and globally. By creating a platform for contemporary artists, curators and cultural producers to be recognised, her leadership continues to extend beyond the four walls of art.

Wdeema AlMheiri

Wdeema Clarity

The beauty entrepreneur, Wdeema Almheiri is the founder of her salon, The Beauty Society, which has adopted a minimalist approach to self-care. As May’s cover star, Almheiri highlighted the importance of being authentic and how the power of precision can work wonders. By starting as a content creator and now becoming an entrepreneur, she has come a long way in hopes to inspire other women in the region.“I am a huge advocate of being 100 percent true to yourself and doing what you love,” she said in an interview with Emirates Woman.

Dr. Nadia Bastaki

Nadia Bastaki

There are not many women that can say they’re paving the way in a male-dominated field, but this rings true for Dr Nadia Bastaki – the first Emirati woman to be registered as a specialist in Aviation Aerospace medicine. She is now the Vice President of Medical Services at Etihad. “It feels great – it’s a big achievement,” she previously told Emirates Woman of breaking down barriers. “While it was important to be the first, it was more important to excel in what you do and be recognised as a leader and expert in my field. Also, I was the first woman to be promoted to the executive level within Etihad which was a big milestone in my career. Most importantly, it’s what difference you can make and how you as a woman can contribute to the success of the UAE.”

Amna Al Haddad

Amna al Haddad has defied stereotypes by becoming a positive figurehead for women in the region. As an Olympic weightlifter and also by being the first Emirati and GCC national to compete in Asia’s regionals, she later on also became a part of Nike’s latest campaign on inner strength, as she continues to push herself to the limit.

Sheikha Al Mheiri

By being an accomplished entrepreneur, Sheikha Al Mheiri brings her out-of-the-box thinking to the table. She’s the brainchild of Society Café & Lounge and the founder of MAD Investments (Make A Difference), the hospitality group, which are the creators of premium signature hospitality concepts in the UAE. By bringing fresh ideas and innovations, she’s constantly raising the bar for branding and brilliant design, by inspiring women on a daily basis.

Jouhayna AlMheiri

Jouhayna AlMheiri is one of the only Emirati Air Traffic Control Officers on the planet. She’s also the founder of Jumpstart Aviation and social media manager and speaker for WAI-ME (Women in Aviation Middle East Chapter). Recently speaking at the Women in Aviation General Assembly as the Master of the Ceremony, she encouraged all women to “please push for your dreams”.

Asma Hilal Lootah

Asma Hilal Lootah is a woman of firsts and has paved the way in the wellness space in the UAE after opening the first fully certified health clinic and wellness centre – The Hundred Wellness Centre – in the country in 2008. With a true entrepreneurial spirit, it was Asma’s love for Pilates that sparked her to launch The Hundred nine years ago. Discussing her journey to becoming an entrepreneur in the region, Asma previously admitted to Emirates Woman it can be “hard sometimes”.

“It can be hard sometimes, women can be stereotyped, and we do face challenges, but I try to focus on how my work can help others, and myself,” she said.

Nouf Omar


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Regarded as the youngest female Emirati pilot, Nouf Omar has made a mark in the aviation industry and has been given wings to fly in the region. She continues to inspire countless women who wish to join this field and is constantly ensuring that they believe in themselves and their capabilities. Omar is currently a pilot on Boeing 777 and a UAE Padel tennis national team player.

Salama Mohamed

After starting her career as a content creator, Salama Mohammed launched her own skincare brand, Peacefull which centres around the theme of self-love. As an advocate for natural beauty, she opened up about her skin condition, vitiligo years ago and has inspired her followers through social media. “It was a struggle growing up when you feel you are different and don’t fit in it is easier to think there is something wrong with you,” she opened up in an interview with Emirates Woman.

Muna Easa Al Gurg

Muna Al Gurg - The Philanthropist

As a prominent businesswoman and inspiring philanthropist, Muna Easa Al Gurg doesn’t limit her role to an Emirati entrepreneur. Since 2008, she has been chairwoman of Young Arab Leaders UAE to spread awareness on education, entrepreneurship and youth development.

“Since 2009, I’ve been Director of Retail, responsible for strategy and operational development of the Group’s international and local retail brand portfolio. It’s been a fascinating experience, as I’m the second generation of our 60-year-old business,” she told Emirates Woman in an interview.

Sarah Alagroobi


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Multidisciplinary artist Sarah Alagroobi never shies away from tackling issues head-on, in particular exploring notions of culture and identity of both Arab and Western contexts through colonial discourse. Having participated in several exhibitions such as Dutch Design Week and Art Jameel, this artist, designer and co-curator of the BANAT Collective is continuing to make a name for herself and inspiring others to do so, too.

Amna Al Qubaisi

Amna Al Qubaisi is the first Emirati female racing driver. As a young female breaking down barriers, the 21-year old is paving the way for many aspiring women in the region. She previously told Emirates Woman in an interview “While I’m still only at the start of my career, I’ve claimed many achievements such as being the first female and Arab to win an FIA F4 race in 2019, the first female Arab to win the RMC in 2017, the GCC Drivers Programme and The Dubai O Plate in 2019.” With so many achievements under her belt, Al Qubaisi knows this is only the beginning.

Zeinab Alhashemi

This young Emirati visual artist has specialised in conceptual art and site-specific installations. After graduating from Zayed University, she created works that captured the transformation of the UAE and the rise of manmade structures. Alhashemi experiments with materials and has participated in prestigious exhibitions such as Sikka Art Fair and Dubai Design Week.

Nadia Al Khaja

Nadia Al Khaja

Founder of SMAT in Dubai Design District, this pioneering entrepreneur launched the brand in 2021 and quickly grew it to be one of the most popular cafés in Dubai. In an ongoing quest for education and inspiring young women to do the same, Nadia is constantly on a mission to ensure more female leaders come to the forefront.

Maryam Saeed

This Emirati fashion designer co-founded Al Mraikn, a sophisticated abaya brand. Born to represent the modern Arab woman, the brand is both confident and practical. With aim to make her clients feel empowered, the brand is timeless and through this she aims to inspire the younger generation.

Sarah AlHashimi

Sarah AlHashimi

As a notable film director, Sarah Alhashimi has made a mark for herself in the industry. By adapting to the ever-changing needs in the film landscape and paving the way for women in the region, Sarah is on a mission to ensure true representation of Emiratis in storytelling is apparent. In a previous interview with Emirates Woman, she said, “We are each other’s inspiration. It is a cyclical process of helping each other out and building a sense of community.”

Minwa Al Hamed


Former Emirates Woman cover star, Minwa Al Hamed has already achieved a whole host of noteworthy milestones at a young age. As a passionate artist, her talent is not limited to one profession as she has translated them into her career path. By constantly pursuing her passion for art and modelling, she continues to inspire women in similar fields on how to balance both. She’s the ultimate example of beauty with brains.

Maitha Al Qubaisi

Maitha Al Qubaisi rider

Emirati endurance rider Maitha Al Qubaisi is one of the trailblazers for the next generation in the UAE. By prioritising education at home, she was taught to be independent and courageous no matter what challenges lie ahead. Despite the hurdles of being thrown off by a horse multiple times at speed, she’s constantly motivated to do better and how sport has taught her that any win is not individual yet collective. Having received so many accolades at a young age, she continues to be a role model for many.

Noora Saeed

Noora Saeed VIBE

Noora Saeed a top restauranteur in the UAE and quickly innovated with her vision to fill the gap in the healthy food eating space. She first opened the Instagrammable café VIBE in 2018, with aesthetic dishes and quaint interiors, making it the first of its kind in the UAE. The restaurant became a popular hotspot for many as it offered unique flavours and something different to what was in the market already. By inspiring other female Emirati restauranteurs in the industry, she has been a leader for future female entrepreneurs. Having also ventured into the beauty industry, her cult beauty brand, Lash Dubai, was also praised by the Kardashians.

Sara Al Tamimi

Sara Tamimi is the founder of her own eponymous fashion label that is constantly transforming and pushing the boundaries of conformity. From creating pieces that are symbolic of timeless elegance to reflecting the energy of urban life, Sara keeps the wearer’s needs in mind as she explores opulent textures and unique fabrics through her work.

Yasmin Al Mulla

Yasmin Al Mulla

Emirati designer Yasmin Al Mulla, the Creative Director of YNM Dubai, knows very well the grit, determination and hard work it takes to follow your true passion in life. Her main drive? Being able to positively represent the UAE within the global fashion market, as she previously told Emirates Woman. Yasmin has gone on to collaborate with global luxury brands including Tiffany & Co, Christian Dior, Louis Vuitton and Christian Louboutin, showcasing Emirati designers on a worldwide stage. “This region brings nothing but magnificent opportunities on daily basis,” she told us. “I would love for every woman to follow her passion, believe in herself and take every opportunity to fulfill her dream.”

Nora Al Matrooshi


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In early 2021, the UAE recruited the very first female Emirati astronaut, Nora Al Matrooshi. With a history-making moment in the industry, this young woman was selected from over 4,000 candidates and even received a public congratulations from His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and the Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

“My message to everyone is if I can do it, you can do it,” she told Dubai Media Office in an interview. “I’ve been working in the oil and gas field for several years, but my dream about becoming an astronaut never went away.”

Dr.Eng Suaad Al Shamsi

Dr. Eng Suaad Al Shamsi is the first UAE female aircraft engineer. With a degree in aviation management and in aerospace engineering, Dr. Suaad has reached great heights, inspiring the younger generations of the future as she combats the challenges of practising in a male-dominated field.

Nayla Al Khaja


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Nayla Al Khaja is the first female director and producer in the UAE and she takes this responsibility of being a woman of firsts very seriously. “I see the messages and emails I receive from girls wanting to follow in my footsteps, and I don’t take this lightly at all,” she previously told Emirates Woman. “It drives me to do more, push boundaries and have my voice heard.”

Zahra Lari

Known as UAE’s first female professional figure skater to compete in a hijab while also being titled as the ‘Ice Princess of the UAE’. With her growing prominence in the sport, she has defied all odds and broken down barriers to inspire generations of athletes to chase their dreams. By leading the UAE to become the first figure skater to participate in the winter qualifications last year, she has inspired over 100 Emirati women to lace up their skates and hit the ice.

Captain Salma Al Baloushi


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Captain Salma Al Baloushi is the first Emirati female to rise to First Officer’s rank at Etihad Airways. While she had never thought she would pursue a career path in aviation, she knew she’d be “someone or something” in the UAE after seeing a photo of Captain Aysha AlHameli, the first Emirati female pilot when she was in primary school. It was only after she had a sign from her grandmother that she decided to pursue aviation.

Butheina Kazim

As a pioneer in the film industry, this entrepreneur is consistently contributing and paving the way to the UAE’s burgeoning art scene. She co-founded Cinema Akil, an independent cinema situated in Alserkal Avenue and has an eye for tasteful and authentic films, making her one of the leading coordinators in the region. She has previously worked with several notable publications in the UAE and won the Special Jury Prize at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival in 2010 for her very own short documentary film.

Dr. Amina Al Rustamani

Dr. Amina Al Rustamani

This Emirati businesswoman is the director of her family business AW Rostamani Group. With a strong vision, she got listed as number 20 in Forbes “Middle East Power Businesswomen 2021” list. She previously held the position as Chairperson of the Dubai Design and Fashion Council and has contributed to several leading journals and publications.

Mouza Alabbar

Mouza Alabbar

As co-founder of Alabbar Enterprises, this entrepreneur is on a mission to empower women in the region. By adopting a detail-oriented approach, Mouza Al Abbar has also spearheaded various brands such as Made by Two and Two By Symphony. In an interview with Emirates Woman she said, “People can sense when there is heart and authenticity behind a brand, and this allows your brand to sell itself.”

Fatma Al Otaiba

Odeem - Fatma Al Otaiba

Designer Fatma Al Otaiba started this year (and new decade) with a bang, by launching her new luxury brand ODEEM. For the last 10 years, Al-Otaiba dreamt of starting her own handbag brand. The Dubai-based luxury label which aims to focus on timeless leather goods. Combining tradition with eclecticism, the designs draw on different textures and details that are sure to turn heads.

Mariam Al Mansouri

Mariam Al Mansouri

A truly iconic woman in the modern history of the United Arab Emirates, Mariam Al Mansouri is the first female fighter pilot in the country. She completed her pilot training at the Khalifa bin Zayed Air College of the UAE Air Force for pilots, graduating in 2007 before joining the country’s air force. In a heroic moment in 2014, seven years into her career as a fighter pilot for the UAE, Al Mansouri led an airstrike mission against terror group ISIS. Prior to completing this mission, Al Mansouri told CNN it had always been her dream to become a fighter pilot, but at the time such opportunities were not available. “At that time, the doors were not open for females to be pilots,” she revealed. “So, I had to wait almost 10 years for the decision to be taken.” Al Mansouri has become an inspiration for many to entire the aviation field, including her sister Aisha Al Mansouri who became one of Etihad’s female pilots and the first woman in the UAE to become an A380 pilot.

Areej Al Hammadi

Making history as a Guinness World Record Holder for the most football ‘hotstepping’ in one minute, Emirati footballer Areej Al Hamadi has made brave steps towards normalising women playing football in the region. “When I was growing up, women’s football was unheard of,” she previously told Emirates Woman. “To even dream of being part of something that didn’t exist at the time and keep pursuing it is brave because it meant taking a risk and some criticism along the way. But I think the bravest step I took was pursuing my dream and playing for the National Team.”

Ohood Bint Khalfan Al Roumi

Ohood Bint Khalfan Al Roumi

In a short period of time, Ohood Bint Khalfan Al Roumi has carved an impressive career for herself as an Emirati politician. She was previously the Director of Economic Policy at the Executive Office of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and then has gone on to hold a number of leadership positions in the UAE federal government. In 2016, she was appointed Minister of State for Happiness and Wellbeing and then in 2020 she was appointed Minister of State for Government Development and Future and is also She is also the Chairwomen of the Federal Authority for Government Human Recourses (FAHR). On an international scale, Her Excellency In 2015, is also a member of the UN’s Global Entrepreneurship Council (GEC), a position she was appointed to in 2015 by the United Nations Foundation. She is the first Arab member to hold such a position.

Fatima Al Qubaisi

Fatima Al Qubaisi

Fatima Al Qubaisi is the first Emirati woman to graduate from Harvard Law School. She is now a fully qualified lawyer practising in the UAE and continues to champion and advocate for fellow females in this country.

Mthayel Al Ali

This Emirati influencer is known for sharing her social media passion with the world. By adding to the UAE’s cultural scene, she’s now built an agency that was born to enhance brands’ social media channels. Having broken the shackles of blogging, which was considered taboo at her time, she has undeniably made an impact in this area.

Nadia Zaal

Nadia Zaal is a leading entrepreneur in the UAE and is currently the CEO & Co-Founder of luxury real estate development firm Zaya. Earlier this year, she told Emirates Woman what makes her proud to be an Emirati woman and what she hopes for the next 50 years in the UAE.

“My hope for women in the UAE in the next 50 years is to be able to feel at ease being themselves and there’s such grace in being a woman,” she said. “I hope the Emirati woman is regarded with reverence because that’s the way it should be.”

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