Who are the women named in Saudi Arabia’s Shoura council?

Kawthar al-Arbash, Mody AlKhalaf and Leena K. Almaeena were all named as new members of Saudi Arabia's Shoura Council. (Al Arabiya)

When Saudi Arabia reshuffled its consultative body the Shoura council on Friday, it also named 29 women as members.

Out of the 29, the majority hold doctorate degrees and held positions in universities and civil societies across many different fields.

Of the new appointments, Leena K. Almaeena was among the youngest members to be named as a member by royal decree. She has written for Al Arabiya English on the importance of Saudi women’s role in society and is a prominent figure in Jeddah advocating for sports and youth.

Also appointed as a member was Mody AlKhalaf, a former Saudi diplomat based in Washington D.C. considered the first woman to hold such post in the country’s political history.

Saudi writer and journalist Kawthar al-Arbash will also join the kingdom’s consultative body. She is the mother of a Saudi son who was killed while preventing an ISIS suicide bomber from attacking a mosque in Dammam last year.

Below is a complete list of all women members of Saudi Arabia’s next Shoura council.

1. Dr. Ahlam Mohammed al-Hakmi

Academic scholar and Dean at Jazan University who specializes in contemporary doctrines.

2. Dr. Asma Saleh al-Zahrani

Academic scholar and researcher specializing in the philosophy and the Arabic language. “I hope to be a voice for all Saudi citizens,” Zahrani said.

3. Dr. Iqbal zain al-Abedin Darandri

Expert in statistics and research fields.

4. Dr. Amal Salama al-Shaman

Has a doctorate in educational and instructional technology from George Washington University. Has been in the Shoura council since January 2013.


5. Dr. Jawaher Dhafer al-Anizi

Academic and scholar with a doctorate in education technology from Umm al-Qura University in Makkah.

6. Jawhara Nasser al-Yami

Bachelor’s degree in business administration and masters’ degree from King Saud University.


7. Dr. Hamda Maqbool al-Joufi

Born in the city of Dumat Al-Jandal, Dr. al-Joufi has a doctorate from Princess Noura University in Riyadh. “I thank King Salman for nominating and appointing me to the council and my joining of the Shoura is evidence of the trust Saudi leadership has on Saudi women and their place in society.”

8. Dr. Hanan Abdulrahman al-Ahmadi

Associate Professor of Health Administration at the Institute of Public Administration in Saudi Arabia.


9. Raedah Abdullah Abunayan

Bachelor’s and master’s degree holder from King Saud University in Riyadh and faculty member at the same university.

10. Dr. Zainab Abu Taleb

Current member of the Shoura council and a faculty member at the King Saud University. A medical doctor specialized in Infertility treatment and IVF.


11. Dr. Samia Abdullah Bakhari

Academic and religious scholar specialized in Islamic philosophy and law from al-Qura University in Makkah.

12. Dr. Sultanah Abdulmusleh al-Bidwi

Educationalist with a doctorate in teaching the English language from Princess Noura University in Riyadh.


13. Dr. Aalia Mohammed al-Dahlawi

An academic and researcher specialized in micro-biology and received her doctorate from King’s College London.

14. Dr. Fatimah al-Shehri

A medical doctor based in Riyadh.


15. Dr. Fardous Saud al-Saleh

Has a doctorate in nuclear physics and was re-appointed to the newly formed Shoura Council.

16. Dr. Fawzia Aba al-Khail

Faculty member at Princess Nora Nora bint Abdul Rahman University.

17. Kawthar al-Arbash

كوثر الأربش وابنها

كوثر الأربش وابنها

Saudi writer and journalist who is the mother of a Saudi son killed while preventing an ISIS suicide bomber from attacking a mosque in Dammam last year.

18. Dr. Latifa Ahmad al-Buainain

Is an Assistant Professor at the University of Dammam.


19. Dr. Latifah Ashaalan

Is a Saudi writer and Associate Professor of Psychology at Princess Nora bint Abdulrahman University. She has a weekly column writing on women’s issues with al-Hayat newspaper.

20. Lina K. Almaeena

Lina Almaeena

Lina Almaeena

Is a Saudi writer and member of the Young Saudi Business Committee and Sports Investment Committee in the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and the Kingdom Young Business Women Council. A She was listed as one of the 200 Most Powerful Women in the Middle East by Forbes Magazine 2014. She is also the founder and team captain of Jeddah United, the first local sports company in Jeddah promoting sports among women and youth.


21. Dr. Mona Almushait

Reappointed to her second term in the Shoura council and is an Associate Professor in obstetrics and gynecology at King Khalid University.

22. Dr. Mastourah Obaid Al-Shammari

Reappointed to her second term in the Shoura council and is an educator.


23. Dr. Nihad Al-Jishi

Reappointed to her second term in the Shoura council and was one of the first two Saudi women to visit Britain’s House of Commons and House of Lords to discuss ways to promote parliamentary elections in both countries.

24. Dr. Nora Abdulrahman Al-Yousif

Has a doctorate in economics from Surrey University in the UK and was under-secretary of the college of political science and law at King Saud University between 2012 and 2015.


25. Dr. Nora Faraj al-Musaed

Sociology professor at King Abdulaziz University and is an expert and researcher on women’s rights and issues.

26. Nora Al-Shaaban

Received her diploma in education and founded “Creativity Forums.” Began her career in education as a teacher, after which she became a school supervisor and later director for nearly eight years.

27. Dr. Nora Mohammed al-Merri

Academic and researcher focused on Arabic literature. “This country has given me so much throughout my life and now is the time to return the favor. I vow to represent all factions of Saudi society and seek to make progress in the coming term,” she told local al-Sabq newspaper after her appointment.

28. Huda Abdurahman Al-Halisi

Reappointed to her second term in the Shoura council and served as deputy chairperson of the Shoura council’s foreign affairs committee.


29. Dr. Mody AlKhalaf

mody alkhalaf

mody alkhalaf

Is a former Saudi diplomat considered the first woman to hold such post in the country’s political history. She has a PhD in Applied Linguistics and is an advocate for women’s rights and has written columns and opinion articles about the issues in both English and Arabic.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:49 - GMT 06:49
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