About Us

The Board of Trustees is the highest governing body in Shamaa. It provides for furthering Shamaa's status in the Arab world and internationally, and oversees the proper implementation of its work strategy and its budget. The Board is constituted of the founding members together with the president of the Lebanese Association of Educational Studies and the individuals the Board chooses to elect to join it as members. The Board of Trustees meets at least once a year. Top among its responsibilities are: Approving the work program and budget, deciding on development plans, securing funding, appointing the members of the Executive Committee and the administrative staff, and forming working committees.


Board of Trustees

Dr. Hassan Ali Al-Ebraheem

Chairman of the Board of Trustees

Dr. Al-Ebraheem is Chairman of the Board of the Kuwait Society for the Advancement of Arab Children, a post he has held since 1980. He is a former Minister of Education in Kuwait. He has taught several courses in the Faculty of Commerce, Economics and Political Science at Kuwait University since 1975 and was rector of the University from 1975 to 1980.

He is a founding member of the Arab Human Rights Organization. He was also a member of the Board of Trustees at the Nomura School of Advanced Management in Tokyo, member of the Board of Directors of the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science and member of the International Advisory Council of the American University of Beirut. Dr. Al-Ebraheem has published several books and articles.


Dr. Rima Karami

Chair of the Executive Committee

Dr. Karami is an associate professor in the Department of Education at the American University of Beirut and currently serves as the program advisor for the Educational Management and Leadership program in the Department. She is also co-principal investigator in the TAMAM school-based reform project. Her areas of professional interest are: educational reform, the role of the school principal, principal training, women in educational administration and educating marginalized populations.

She earned her doctorate in education from Portland State University, Portland, Oregon in 1997, with a specialty in educational administration and supervision and a focus on the school principalship, organizational change and educational policy. She also holds a Bachelor in Science in Chemistry, a teaching diploma in secondary science education, and a Master of Arts in Science Education from the American University of Beirut (AUB).


Ms. Basma Chebani


Ms. Chebani is currently employed as Information Systems Librarian in the library of the American University of Beirut (AUB). She has previously served as the chief librarian and head of the Department of Information & Scientific Documentation in the Arab Atomic Energy Agency within the framework of the Arab league from 1992 to 2002.

Prior to that, at the beginning of her professional career, she held the position of head of Information Processing and Thesaurus Section in the Arab League Center of Documentation in Tunisia from 1982 to 1990.
At the same time she served from 1989-1990 also as manager of a joint FAO and Arab League project to translate the AGROVOC Thesaurus into Arabic. She is currently a UNESCO documentation expert and has been a member of the Lebanese Library Association since 2002. Ms. Chebani was awarded a B.A. in Information-Documentation in 1982 and a B.A. in Archeology and History of Arts in 1987 by the Lebanese University. She was awarded an M.A. in Library Sciences in the domain of XML programming and digital libraries from Manouba University in Tunisia in 2001.


Dr. Adnan El Amine


Dr. El Amine is currently a consultant of higher education at the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Education in the Arab States and a lecturer at the American University of Beirut. He initiated the idea of founding the Lebanese Association for Educational Studies. He was among its founders in 1995 and served as its president for nine years. He also initiated the idea of founding the Arab Educational Information Network (Shamaa) and was one of its founders as an Arab NGO in 2010.

Dr. El Amine graduated from the Lebanese University in 1971 and obtained his doctorate in the sociology of education from the Sorbonne University-Paris in 1977. He then obtained a "Doctorat d'État" in the humanities from the Sorbonne in 1991. He was full professor at the Lebanese University until 2008, when he resigned. 
Dr. El Amine is the author of 19 books and more than 30 papers published in Lebanese, Arab and international journals.


Mrs. Rania Kassab

Member-at-large of the Executive Committee

Mrs. Kassab is a seasoned Senior Educational Consultant passionate about the role of Education in the Middle East. She has years of experience in the field of education, spanning General Management, Strategic and Financial Planning, Project and Conference Management, Fundraising as well as Children bookstore & School Management.

Currently she is consulting for various NGOs, and academic institutions in Lebanon.
In 1996, Ms. Kassab introduced the Education Pledge for graduating students at the American University of Beirut, followed by an Educational Award for an outstanding BA graduate in the university’s Faculty of Education. She has also worked with the Lebanese Ministry of Education on developing a similar award at the national level. 
Ms. Kassab is also a founding member of the Middle East Partnership Initiative and a member of the Lebanese League for Women in Business.


Dr. Maud Stephan - Hachem

Member-at-large of the Executive Committee

Dr. Stephan is a professor of Information and Libraries Sciences at the Lebanese University. She holds a doctorate in Education from Saint Joseph University in Beirut, a postgraduate degree in Information and Documentation, and a master's degree in Philosophy.

Held the position of Director of the Lebanese National Library project from 1999 till 2003, then its Scientific Advisor from 2003 till 2018. As advisor to the Minister of Culture between 2000 and 2003, she established the network public libraries of the said Ministry. Between 2014 and 2018, she coordinated the Shamaa’s project on developing the capacities of master’s and doctoral students in education. The project delivers training courses on the use of educational resources.

She has published three books and many articles on documentation, libraries, publishing and reading.
Founding member of the Assabil Association and currently its president.


Dr. Hazem Beblawi (Honorary member)

Dr. Beblawi served as Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and former Finance Minister in Egypt, following the January 25 Revolution in 2011. He graduated with an honorary degree from the faculty of Law, Cairo University in 1957, and received postgraduate diplomas in political economy, general law and economic sciences from Cairo University, Egypt and the University of Grenoble, France. He then earned his PhD in economic sciences from the University of Paris.

He served as the Delegate of the State Council, lecturer of Economics and of law at the faculty of Law, Alexandria University, and as a lecturer in a number of Egyptian, American and French universities. He also served as an adviser to the Kuwait Finance Minister and as a director of the department of economy at the Industrial Bank of Kuwait, the Chairman of the Export Development Bank of Egypt, and the Export Credit Guarantee Company of Egypt. Moreover, he was an adviser to the Arab Monetary Fund in Abu Dhabi. Prior to this he was Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA),1995–2000. 

In 1983, Dr. Beblawi won the Economics prize for the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences across the Arab World. He also won multiple awards from the Belgian, French and Lebanese governments. Dr. Beblawi has numerous publications in English, Arabic and French in the areas of money, international trade, the Arab economic cooperation and the economic theory, and has contributed in the development of the “Rentier State Theory” using the prevailing economic concepts.


Dr. Aziza Bennani (Honorary member)

Dr. Bennani is currently Permanent Delegate of the Kingdom of Morocco to UNESCO and has been since 1999 a member of the Executive Board of the Organization. She served for three years as president of the Board. She is a university professor and holds a doctorate in Spanish literature from the Mohammed V University in Rabat and a "Doctorat d'État" in Hispanic literature from the University of Paris X. She has authored many literary works and was Dean of the Faculty of Literature and Human Sciences of the Mohamedia Hassan II University in Morocco.

Dr. Bennani served as Minister of Culture in 1997-1998 and High Commissioner for the disabled from 1994 to 1998. Within the context of her work for UNESCO she served as counselor to the United Nations Group on the Alliance of Civilizations in 2005 and 2006 and as president in 2007 of the General Assembly of States Delegations to the Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. She is currently jury president of the King Mohammed VI Prize and jury member of the King Hassan II Prize.


Dr. Fayzah Al Khurafi

Dr. Fayzah Al Khurafi is Emeritus professor of Physical Chemistry at Kuwait University. She is the first woman to have been awarded the status of a cabinet minister in Kuwait and the Arab Gulf states, and also the first woman president of Kuwait University—and indeed of any university in Kuwait or the Middle East. She established the first corrosion research laboratory and the first catalysis research laboratory. She was awarded the "Tho-Al-Weshah" Award, the highest order award granted in Kuwait, by His Highness the Amir of Kuwait.

She was also awarded an honorary doctorate by the American University in Cairo for her contributions to the reconstruction and development of Kuwait University. In 2011, she received the Oreal -UNESCO Award of the Arab States and Africa for Women in Science. She is also the recipient of numerous distinguished scientific awards including that of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). She is the Vice President of the Third World Academy of Science and Technology representing the Arab World and has membership in the fields of Planning, Development and Education in Kuwait. She is a member of the United Nations University Council, of the Board of Trustees of the United Nations University in Tokyo from 2002 till 2008, of the Supreme Council of the Third World Academy of Science (TWAS), and of the American Chemical Society. She is also a member in twenty-five regional and international scientific councils, committees, institutions, organizations and unions. Dr. Al Khurafi has published more than 117 papers in her field of specialization in international scientific journals, and more than 50 studies in proceedings of international scientific conferences and in scientific books.


Mrs. Salwa Saniora - Baasiri

Ms. Baasiri is currently the Director-General of the Rafic Hariri Foundation. She was, until recently, Secretary-General of the Lebanese National Commission for UNESCO, a post she occupied for several years. She is a graduate in Economics from the American University of Beirut. Mrs. Baasiri started her career as a researcher in econometrics.

She then ventured into several other domains which helped her to acquire multifaceted credentials and equipped her to assume key responsibilities in the domains of education, science, culture and communication, as well as in the realms of cultural and religious dialogue and bioethics.
She participated actively in more than 150 national, regional and international conferences and seminars, whether as main organizer, keynote speaker, rapporteur, or chairperson. The most prominent of these activities was chairing two UNESCO general conference commissions, the programme support and external relations (PRX) Commission in 2007, and the Social and Human Sciences Commission in 2009. Ms. Baasiri also produced several working papers, lectures and newspaper articles and reviewed and edited several publications.


Mr. Hassan Abdalla

Mr. Hassan Abdalla is the Vice Chairman & Managing Director of the Arab African International Bank, currently the Chairman of UBAF Hong Kong, board member of UBAF Paris, UBAC Curacao, and the German-Arab Chamber of Industry and Commerce. In addition to being the founder and the Chairman of Board of Trustees of “We owe it to Egypt” foundation.

Abdalla formerly served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Institute of International Finance “IIF”, the IIF Emerging Markets Advisory Council, the Central Bank of Egypt, the Egyptian Stock Exchange, Orascom Construction Industries, Ghabbour Auto, The Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Egypt, and Telecom Egypt. He also occupied the position of the Chairman of the Middle East, Far East and Africa regional committee of the International Capital Association in Zurich.
Abdalla is a graduate of the American University in Cairo “AUC” where he received his BA & MA in Business Administration. He is currently a part-time faculty Member at the AUC, and a Member of the Strategic Advisory Board of the School of Business at the AUC.


Dr. Abdel Moneim Osman

Dr. Osman was Director of UNESCO Regional Bureau for Education in the Arab States and UNESCO's representative in Lebanon and Syria for five years up to the end of 2011. Since 2006 he has been a member of the Board of Trustees of the Arab Open University. He is holder of a B.A. in Philosophy, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Comparative Education from the University of London's Institute of Education in the UK.

Dr. Osman began his professional career as inspector of administration and planning of higher education and research policies at the Sudanese Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research. He was Dean of the Faculty of Educational Studies of the Arab Open University in Kuwait, as well as Dean and professor at the University of Juba, Sudan. He was also professor of comparative education at the University of Qatar. He has also served as founding member, Vice Chair, member of the Board of Trustees and advisor in several national and regional organizations and committees in the domain of education. Dr. Osman has produced 97 studies in various subjects within the domain of education.


Dr. Raouf Ghusayni (Honorary member)

Dr. Ghusayni lectures in the Department of Education at the American University of Beirut, and is a former Chairman of the Department. He has served as director of the Division of Education and Extension Programs and of the Career Guidance Center at the University, as well as director of the Educational Resources Center at International College in Beirut. He is a co-founder of the International School of London and served as its headmaster for eight years.

Dr. Ghusayni was president of the Lebanese Association for Educational Studies from 2009 to 2011. He was editor of the third yearbook published in 2001 by the Association titled Values and Education. He also co-edited the seventh LAES yearbook published in 2012 and titled Learning and Teaching History: Lessons from and for Lebanon. Dr. Ghusayni holds a Ph.D. in Education from Stanford University, U.S.A. His primary research focus is on design of the school curriculum and moral and citizenship education. He has served as an educational consultant to a number of organizations including UNICEF, UNESCO and the European Union.


Dr. Nada Abdelwahed Mneymneh

Dr. Nada Abdelwahed Mneymneh currently chairs the Lebanese Association for Educational Sciences (LAES).
From 2009 to 2014, she held the position of Director of the ESDS (Educational Sector Development Secretariat) at the Ministry of Education in Lebanon. With a team of education specialist, Dr Mneymneh was responsible of the preparation of the projects and programs of the ESDS, as well as the coordination and follow-up with concerned international and local donors to secure needed funding.

Prior to that Dr. Mneymneh held the position of the project manager of the (EDP) Education Development Project, financed by a World Bank loan (2006-2009), where she was in charge of the coordination, monitoring and implementation of the various components of this project. Prior to her role as project manager, Dr. Mneymneh was the Education Specialist at the EDP (2001-2006).
Dr. Mneymneh holds a doctorate degree in Education from the Lebanese University faculty of Education; she held various roles within the field of Education to include: Secondary school teacher, education counselor at the Ministry of Education, and assistant professor at the Faculty of Education - Lebanese University.



Mr. Anwar Abdallah Al-Nouri (1940-2013)

Mr. Al-Nouri was Minister of Education and Higher Education from 1986 to 1990, and Minister of Health from 1996 to 1997 in Kuwait. He occupied the position of Secretary-General of Kuwait University from 1966 until 1978; prior to that he had served as the cultural attaché at the Embassy of Kuwait in London. Since 1980 he has been the managing partner for the Arab Information Management Services. He was the chairman of Global Investment House from 1997 to 2007, and chairman and managing director of the Industrial Bank of Kuwait from 1978 to 1986.

Mr. Al-Nouri is chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Endowment for the Support of Education, and founding member of several societies and committees including the Kuwait-American Foundation and the Kuwait Society for the Advancement of Arab Children. He was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Kuwait in 2009. He has published numerous articles and a book entitled FīMarābi` Al-Dhikra:(In the Domain of Remembrances).


Mr. Mahmoud Al-Nouri

Mr. Al-Nouri was Minister of Finance in Kuwait from 2003 to 2005. He currently holds several posts including Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Kuwait Syrian Holding Company in Kuwait and of the UBAF Bank in Hong Kong, as well as Chairman of the Board of Kuwaiti Investors Association in Syria; he also chairs the Abdalbaqi Al Nouri Charity. Mr. Al-Nouri previously was Chairman of the Board of Directors of Gulf Bank in Kuwait (2012-2013), the Arab African International Bank in Egypt (2005-2014) and the Kuwait Public Transport Company (1998-2003).

He also occupied the position of Chairman and Managing Director of Kuwait Investment Projects Company "KIPCO" (1986-1990) and was consultant for the Economic and Financial Affairs Committee of the Kuwait National Assembly (1993-2003).


Mr. Nasser Al Nowais

Mr. Nasser Al Nowais is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Rotana Hotel Management Corporation PJSC., and the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Market and Management Services Company W.L.L. and represents the French company "Commercial Markets Company" in the Middle East. Mr. Al Nowais presides over all the Boards of Directors of the subsidiaries of Market and Management Services Company W.L.L.

Mr. Al Nowais studied economics at New York University and founded the Abu Dhabi National Hotels Company. He was then appointed director of the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development.
Adding to his work in banking, insurance, aviation and tourism investment, Mr. Al Nowais worked as an under-secretary of the Ministry of Finance and Industry in the United Arab Emirates Government until he founded the Rotana Hotel Management Group in 1992, which was the first Arab hotel chain in the Middle East.


Dr. Hamed Al Hamami

Dr. Hamed Al Hamami is the Director of UNESCO Regional Office in Beirut and UNESCO Representative for Lebanon and Syria since February 2012. He joined UNESCO in 2004 as a Director for the Doha Cluster Office and UNESCO Representative for the Gulf States and Yemen. Dr. Al Hamami has a Ph.D. degree in "Educational Policies and Management" from Birmingham University, UK.

He served as Director for the Technical Office of Studies and Development at the Education Ministry (Oman), and a Director-General for Curriculum and Training at the Ministry of Education (Oman) 1999-2004. He worked as a teacher, educational inspector, trainer, manager and consultant. He was also a member at the Omani Higher Education Council and worked as an Educational consultant for the Gulf States and international organizations. Dr. Al Hamami has numerous publications in educational policies and management, educational administration and curriculum development.