On the occasion of International Women’s Day 2017, the American University of Beirut (AUB) announced the establishment of the Randa Bdeir Leadership Award in Recognition of Outstanding Leadership in Supporting the Careers of Women.
Each year, this award will honor one individual for the outstanding efforts and accomplishments over the course of her or his life that contributed significantly to supporting the careers of women at AUB, in Lebanon and the region, or at the international level.
The awardee is chosen from a group nominated by the AUB community. As the award is a presidential one, the final selection of the awardee will be made by a committee selected by the President of the University. The final selection will be based on demonstrated evidence of supporting the careers of women.
Ms. Bdeir, an alumna and currently Group Head of Electronic Payment Solutions & Card Services and Assistant General Manager at Bank Audi Group, considers that this award is especially important because it does not only honor women who are successful, but also because it gives credit to the people who support them.
“Even though men and women can be equal with their qualifications and capabilities, women are faced with harder challenges. In our society, women have to address the unjust civil and banking laws, the society’s outlook on them, and their obligations towards their family,” said Ms. Bdeir. “They need all the support they can get in order to fulfill their dreams and achieve their goals.”
President Fadlo Khuri thanked Ms. Bdeir for her initiative and highlighted the importance of this award in advancing the careers of women. He stated: “I am grateful to Ms. Bdeir and the Gender Equity Group for this important award. This represents an important initiative to support those who encourage the active participation of women across different fields in our society. I am pleased that this award is well aligned with AUB’s mission to establish gender equity across campus, and to be a model for the society when it comes to supporting and believing in the capabilities of our women. This lends further momentum to our efforts to improve the lives and careers of women at AUB, as recently highlighted by the Taskforce on the Lives and Careers of Women Faculty. Randa Bdeir, a highly successful alumna and female leader, is generously giving back to her alma mater, in order to advance the causes of our outstanding women and their mentors.”
President Khuri recognized the efforts of the Gender Equity Group at AUB led by Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences Dean Nahla Hwalla for securing this award. The Group is composed of Dr. Hwalla, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences Nadia El Cheikh, Interim Associate Provost Dr. Hala Muhtasib and Dr. Charlotte Karam, who is Associate Dean for Programs at the Suliman S. Olayan School of Business.