We came across this wonderful list compiled by Morocco’s princess youtuber Hind Touissate. The 24-year-old blogger recorded this video, which garnered over 79,000 views, for International Women’s Day. Hind goes over the women that made history in Morocco but, more interestingly, she highlights 10 women that are making Moroccans proud today.
1. Dr. Ismahane El Ouafi: After obtaining a Ph.D in genetics from Córdoba University, Spain, she was appointed Director General of ICBA-Agriculture for Tomorrow. Among the many prizes she was awarded, such as the ‘Excellence in Science’ award from the Global Thinkers Forum in 2014, she was ranked among the 20 Most Influential Women in Science in the Islamic World.
2. Nawal El Mutawakil: A former Moroccan hurdler, Nawal won the inaugural women’s 400 meters hurdles event at the 1984 Summer Olympics, becoming the first female Muslim born in Africa to become an Olympic champion. She was also appointed Minister of Sports in 2007.
3. Asmaa Boujibar: At the unbelievable age of 27, Asmaa joined the team of researchers at NASA (National Aeronautic and Space Administration) in 2008, while working for her Ph.D studies.
4. Fatima Mernissi: An Islamic feminist, writer, and sociologist awarded the Prince of Asturias Award along with Susan Sontag, Fatima wrote a landmark book on women in the Arab world, called ‘Beyond the veil’.
5. Touria Chaoiu: Born in 1936 in Fez, Touria was the first Moroccan and Arab woman to become a pilot. She pioneered in 1952, when she was only sixteen years old, receiving massive media attention and congratulations by women’s organizations across the globe.
6. Meriem Chadid: An Astronomer and researcher, she is the first woman astronomer in the world to have been committed to install a large astronomical observatory in Antarctica, where she was also the first to place an Arab flag (Moroccan) at the South Pole.
7. Sanaa Hamri: A prominent video and film director, Sanaa worked with international stars such as Prince, Lenny Kravtiz, Sting, and Christina Aguilera.
8. Hynd Bouhia: Ranked 29th among Forbe’s Most Powerful Women in 2008, and again number 18th according to Arabian Business in 2011, Hynd spent eight years working at the World Bank, before being called in by by the country’s then Prime Minister Driss Jettou to become his advisor in 2004. With a Harvard PhD in engineering, she was also Director General of the Casablanca Stock Exchange.
9. Aziza Bennani: Since 1998, Aziza is a permanent ambassador of Morocco to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and was elected in 2001 as president of the Executive Board of the same organization.
10. Aicha Echenna: Known as the mother Teresa of the Arab World, she founded the Moroccan Solidarité Feminine association in 1985, where she encourages the community to help the underprivileged. In 2009, Chenna was awarded the world’s largest faith-based prize for entrepreneurship, the Opus Prize, for her life achievement as a social activist.