MESIA’s mandate is to promote solar power across the Middle East. Achieving this goal involves working closely with the leaders in the solar power sector, both at the government and grass-roots level. To help nurture future generations of solar leaders, this year MESIA has partnered with Intersolar Middle East to put in place the 4th edition of the Solar Pioneers recognition Ceremony.

3 young solar leaders and innovators drawn from across the Middle East will be selected by a jury. The candidates must be based in the Middle East, aged below 40 years old. They need to have a proven track record and demonstrated impact in leading the growth of solar across the MENA region and exemplify the qualities of innovation, long term vision and leadership.

Solar Pioneers
Rund Awwad ‎

Rund is an energy expert and a water-environmental specialist who has been active ‎in the green sector since 2003. Rund earned her Master’s degree in Mechanical ‎Engineering/Renewable Energy from the University of Jordan. She stands out as ‎the first Master’s graduate in this specialty from a local University - with the highest ‎distinction (GPA 3.9). She holds a Bachelor’s degree in...
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Dr. Hassan Qasem
General manager
Alternative Energy Project Company (KIPCO group)

Dr. Hassan Qasem has been the general manager of the Alternative Energy Project Company (AEPC), a subsidiary of Kuwait Projects Company holding, since 2016. Dr. Qasem have been developing and managing solar related projects and research in the area of photovoltaic technology for the last 14 years. His experience varied from international standard testing for PV (UL and IEC) to outdoor character...
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Hilal Al Ghaithi
Project Manager – Renewable Energy
ARE, Authority for Electricity Regulation

Hilal Al Ghaithi joined the Authority of Electricity Regulation over a decade ago as a Regulatory Engineer. During his tenure, Al Ghaithi has led several successful renewable energy initiatives including the 2008 Renewable Energy Study. Currently, he has a lead responsibility for the Authority’s Renewable energy initiative “Sahim”. As a result of his extensive knowledge in engineering and th...
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Sherif Magdy El Gabaly
Managing Director and Founder
Enara Capital

Enara Capital is an infrastructure project development platform focused on renewables. Enara capital serves as the exclusive Investment management and project development partner of Chinese renowned Utility and Power conglomerates across the MEA region; notably Xinte Energy and TBEA Group with a pipeline of $1Billion of renewable projects under-development across Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Kenya...
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Taher Diab
Senior Director - Strategy & Planning
Dubai Supreme Council of Energy
Secretary General - Emirates Energy Award

Mr. Diab is Senior Director of Strategy & Planning at Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and Secretary General of Emirates Energy Award. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil & Environmental Engineering from the University of New Orleans (1989), graduate of Hazardous Waste Institute at University of Louisville (1992) and an IRCA Quality Lead Assessor certification. His career e...
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Mohamad Jameel Al Ramahi 
Chief Executive Officer, Masdar 

As Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi leads the strategic development of Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar), today a leading global commercial enterprise in renewable energy and clean technologies. A company veteran, he has played an instrumental role in the company’s emergence over the last decade, both as a catalyst for renewable energy in the Arab world and as an...
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Eng. Lamya Youssef Abdel Hakim
Head Sector For Private Power Projects
& Head of Feed In Tariff Program
Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC)

Chairwoman of WICE (Women in Clean Energy) the Initiative from CEBC (Clean Energy Business Council) Winner of the Best Initiative of the year 2014 &Winner of Solar Award from Middle East Solar Industry Agency (MESIA) Winner of the Africa Regulator of the year (2016) from Africa Leadership Magazine. Graduated in Ain Shams University - Faculty of Engineering - Power Systems Dep. M...
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Dr. Steven Griffiths
Vice President for Research, Professor of Practice
Masdar Institute

Dr. Steven Griffiths is Vice President for Research and Professor of Practice at the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology. At Masdar Institute Dr. Griffiths has overall responsibility for research, including large-scale, collaborative research programs and centers, research development, sponsored programs, technology transfer, and research laboratories. Outside of Masdar Institute, Dr. Griff...
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Abdulmohsin Mohammad Al Shoaibi
Managing Partner
Saudi Arabia

Abdulmohsin Mohammad Al Shoaibi served as the Executive Manager of Solar Arabia Co. Limited (formerly known as BP Solar Arabia Co. Ltd), which specializes in every aspect of Photovoltaic (PV) solar modules, including assembly and development, design, engineering, system sizing, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of fully-integrated solar power systems. With more than 25 years of indu...
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Ibrahim M. Al-Humaidan
President & CEO
Chemical Development Co.
Saudi Arabia

Held various executive roles for more than 25 years: Chemical Development Company, President and CEO, (June 2006 – Present) Polysilicon Development Company, President and CEO, (Jan 2008 – Present) Olayan Group (OFC), Business Development Manager, (Feb 2000 – June 2006) Zamil Group, Project Manager, (July 1997 – Jan 2000) Saudi Industrial Development Fund (SIDF), Senior Analyst,...
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Ahmed S. Nada
Vice President & Region Executive, Middle East
First Solar

As Vice President and Region Executive for the Middle East, Ahmed Nada is responsible for driving First Solar’s growth strategy in the region. Ahmed joined First Solar in January 2013, bringing over two decades of experience in the energy and power industries to his new role. Based in Dubai, he leads business development activities across the region, outside of Saudi Arabia.   Ahmed ...
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Venu Nambiar
Executive Vice President
Sunpower Corporation

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Paul van Son
Country Chairman MENA & Turkey
Germany / UAE

Paul van Son joined RWE AG in 2015 as its Chairman for MENA and Turkey from its basis in Dubai, UAE. Paul has been active for over 35 years in various supervisory board, executive and operations management positions in the international (renewable) electricity and gas business. His leadership experience includes a series of predominantly pioneering positions, such as: control system developme...
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Mohammed Atif
Regional Manager
Middle East - DNV GL

Mohammed Atif is the Regional Manager of DNV GL Energy and Renewables in the Middle East. He is an economist with a background in energy and utilities advising on infrastructure development and legal and regulatory frameworks. He has experience in economic and financial analysis, regulation and restructuring, and market design to encourage private sector participation. Recently in the UAE, Moha...
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Michelle Davies
Membership Director

Michelle has advised on some of the market’s largest renewable energy transactions such as advising on over 50% of the UK Round 3 offshore wind programme on projects with a capital cost in excess of £40 bn including advising the Forewind Consortium on what will be the largest renewable energy project globally, RWE, and Eneco, advising on Statkraft's investment in the £1.5 billion Sheringham Sh...
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Nikolai Dobrott
Founder and managing partner
Apricum – The Cleantech Advisory

Before establishing Apricum in 2008, Mr. Dobrott spent 15 years in leadership positions in the consulting and energy sectors. He worked intensively in top organizations to design and implement business strategies. He started his career at Arthur D. Little as a management consultant focused on chemicals and energy. He then led corporate development and M&A at Rütgers (now Evonik) and later...
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Evangelos Lianos
Executive Director

Mr. Evangelos S. Lianos, is the Executive Director for the Middle East for YINGLI SOLAR, worlds largest Photovoltaic Panels Manufacturer. He is leading YINGLI’s energy solutions business in the region for PV panels sales, partnering in solar energy farms development and IPP / BOO / BOT operations, EPC and O&M services, partnering with existing or planning-to-become local PV manufacturers. ...
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Ahmed Lootah
Senior Project Manager in the Infrastructure and Environment Policy and Strategy section
Prime Minister's Office

Ahmed Lootah is a Senior Project Manager in the Infrastructure and Environment Policy and Strategy section at the Prime Minister's Office. In this position Ahmed focuses on reviewing and supporting the development of federal energy and environmental policy and strategy as well as assisting in the implementation of special initiatives of His Highness the Prime Minister in the energy and environment...
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Imtiaz Mahtab
Vice-president and Programs Director

Imtiaz Mahtab is currently Regional Managing Director of Electronics at Air Liquide Middle East & North Africa, and an executive member of its MENA management team. Imtiaz has over 18 years of executive leadership roles internationally in the management of businesses in industrial gas, Energy and High Technology sectors. He is currently on the advisory board of various Renewable Energy and Hig...
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Imad Meselmani
Regional Marketing & Sales Manager

Imad Meselmani started his career in solar back in 2010 when he joined Power-One Inc. as Marketing & Sales Manager for the Middle East. Power-One is one of the largest solar inverter manufacturers world-wide (second largest). Throughout his experience, he had the opportunity to deal with various stakeholders in the solar space. From publicly owned utilities to privately owned developers, from ...
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Alice Cowman
CEBC (Clean Energy Business Council)

Alice Cowman is the CEO for the Clean Energy Business Council.  She has over 10 years experience as a lawyer in energy, public private partnerships and project finance. She has worked for International Finance Corporation on energy and private sector development in West Africa. Currently, she also works for the Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility on renewable energy and project development o...
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Belen Gallego
CSP Today 
London - UK

Belen Gallego is the founder and CEO of CSP Today and PV Insider, two business intelligence and events brands that focus on fostering communication, partnership and information flow for stakeholders of  the concentrated solar power and photovoltaics industries respectively. Belen works with companies, institutions and government of the key global solar markets including US and Europe, India, ...
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Jason O'Connell

Jason Connell joined Utilities Middle East as editor in May 2014. Since taking the reins he has closely monitored the latest developments in the solar sector and produced a number of in depth features exploring the issues surrounding the industry in this region. Originally from Ireland, his career as a journalist has seen him cover the shipping and natural gas industries in London before making th...
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Reza Sheybani
BPVA (British Photovoltaic Association)
London – UK

Reza Shaybani has been managing private and public technology focused companies in the optical disc manufacturing equipment, semiconductor and solar PV industries for the past 20 years. Since 2007 he has played an active role in the solar PV industry globally as founder and investor in a number of leading companies. In 2010 with a group of major companies with interest in the UK solar PV market (t...
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Frank Wouters
Wouters LTD
Former Deputy Director General

Frank Wouters possesses over 24 years of international experience in the field of renewable energy. He has held several senior management positions in leading organizations and institutions in the fields of renewable energy and sustainability. From 2009 to 2012 he served as the Director of Masdar Clean Energy, a developer and operator of renewable power generation projects, where he was responsibl...
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Daniel Zweitz
CEO – Founder

As the CEO of Enerwhere, Daniel Zywietz, is building the world’s first rental provider of modular solar-hybrid power plants for off-grid power needs.   Daniel has a decade of experience in management consulting, banking and entrepreneurship in Europe and the Middle East, with a focus on renewable energy, energy efficiency and sustainability topics.   Prior to founding Enerw...
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Karim Asali
Director Reference Projects
Desertech Industrial Initiative GmbH (Dii)
Germany / Jordan

Karim Asali began his career in the renewable energy sector in 1987 focusing on CSP plants in the United States. He later joined ABB where he spent ten years in oil and gas and power plants design. Since 2000, Karim shifted his focus to develop PV business at companies such as Kyocera, Sharp and First Solar.   His primary focus is the MENA region and Karim joined Dii as Director of Refe...
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Zia Malik Rahim
Strategic Advisor to the Economic Development
King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)
Saudi Arabia

Zia Malik Rahim is a Strategic Advisor to the Economic Development at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology. He specialises in the solar sector from the vantage point of technology and commercialisation in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.   He has worked as the President and CEO of Zoom Diversified Inc from 2007 to 2008, and has served as the President and CEO of Princely S...
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Yara Anabtawi
Director – Business Development, Renewables
ACWA Power International (ACWA Power)
Saudi Arabia

Yara Anabtawi is Director - Business Development, Renewables at ACWA Power International (ACWA Power), a  leading developer, investor, co-owner and operator of plants with a generation portfolio of 15,731MW of power and 2.37million m3/day of desalinated water with an investment value in excess of USD 23 billion. With over 18 years of experience, Yara has been in various leadership roles coveri...
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Nimer Abu Ali
Executive Manager Cleantech
Ernst & Young

Nimer is the Leader of the Clean Technology sector for Ernst & Young in the Middle East and his portfolio includes Solar, Wind, Electrical Vehicles (E V), and green building.  He is an industrial Engineer combined with MBA finance.   Nimer has managed and completed more than 100 projects for many diverse clients in the government and private sectors in various fields such as tr...
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Logan Goldie-Scot
Analyst, Energy Smart Technologies, London office
Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Logan is an analyst on the Energy Smart Technologies team at Bloomberg New Energy Finance, focused on energy storage. He is also the Lead Analyst for the Middle East and North Africa, responsible for market analysis of the region including policy and regulation; economic and technology assessments; market sizing and market drivers. He was predominantly focused on the wind and solar sectors. &nb...
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Imtiaz Mahtab
Executive Vice President
Air Liquide Middle East and North Africa Electronics
UAE / Saudi Arabia

Imtiaz Mahtab is Executive Vice President of Air Liquide Middle East and North Africa Electronics, and executive member of its MENA management team. Imtiaz has over 17 years of senior leadership roles internationally in developing, managing as well as restructuring  businesses – in mainly Energy and High Technology  sectors.  He is also on the advisory board of various Renewable Energy and H...
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Grant Greatrex
Senior Partner
MaC Group

Grant Greatrex is the Senior Partner of MaC Group heading up the company’s renewable energy advisory division working with clients across the full value chain and with technology, industrial and IPP players, as well as with institutional investors.   Grant has over 25 years of experience in management consultancy with leading global firms. Over the past decade he has specialized in th...
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Dr. Eesa Mohammed Bastaki, Ph.D.
President, University of Dubai, Former CEO, ICT Fund
Recipient of Emirates for Sciences, Arts & Literature in 2009

Dr. Eesa Bastaki is President of the University of Dubai and former CEO of the ICT Fund where he actively led the effort to create an eco-system in the UAE ICT industry, by encouraging entrepreneurship, funding R&D projects and University scholarships and implementing ICT initiatives at the school level.   During his distinguished career he held many senior posts including Director ...
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Abdulaziz Mohammed Baras
Researcher In Solar Energy
Saudi Arabia

Abeer Manneh
Woods Bagot
Urban Designer
United Arab Emirates

Ahmed M. Zaitoun
Solatechs (solar technology solutions)- Founder
Mechanical Power Engineer

Alexandre Allegue
Sun & Life
Vice President for Business Dvp
Saudi Arabia

Georg Eitelhuber
Nomadd-Desert Solutions
Saudi Arabia

Matthew Merfert
First Solar
Project Manager
United Arab Emirates

Mohamed Makki Jamjoom
Desert Technologies
Shareholder & Manager
Saudi Arabia

Omran Al-Kuwari
Green Gulf

Reda El Chaar
Access Advisory
Managing Director
United Arab Emirates

Sami Khoreibi
Chief Executive Officer
United Arab Emirates

Eng. Noora Ahmed Alnaqbi
Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA)
Program Director
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Eng. Noora Ahmed Alnaqbi has over 10 years of experience in the power & energy sector being involved in key organizations within the UAE. After joining Dubai Electricity & Water Authority, she contributed to the design and execution of technical projects for MV substations within DEWA distribution network and later in strategic planning, business development and regulations. She is currently regulation manager, involved in privatization and infrastructure projects, IPP, for the diversification of energy with key focus on renewable/solar and clean energy for the sustainable development of the sector. She also oversees DEWA distributed renewable resources generation initiative as program manager, setting up and deploying the needed regulatory framework, technical standards and guidelines, and building renewable capabilities in order to enable and encourage individual customers to install distributed solar systems within their premises and have it connected to DEWA network.
Sander Trestain
Executive Director, Projects
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Sander Trestain is a founding partner and Executive Director of Projects at Enviromena Power Systems. He has over ten years’ experience in construction, commercial contract negotiation, project management and contract tendering, and directed the construction of over 40 MW of solar PV in 6 countries including the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Mauritania, Oman and Germany.   Mr. Trestain graduated Mechanical Engineering & Management (’03) at McMaster University in Canada.   Mr. Trestain is an avid promoter of renewable energy and solar photovoltaics, regularly speaking at industry conferences and events, appearing on regional radio programs and in print media.   Mr. Trestain currently directs Enviromena’s project execution and marketing functions.
Marc Norman
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Marc Norman is a Dubai-based lawyer at Chadbourne.   Marc's practice focuses on project finance and acquisitions in the power sector. Marc is currently advising on the financing of four PV projects in the first round of Jordan’s direct proposals process and on a round 2 project bid.  He recently advised a developer consortium on its bid to develop a 100 MW PV project in Dubai.   Marc regularly writes about solar power-related topics, with a focus on legal developments affecting solar power market stakeholders.   Marc was MESIA’s Marketing and Communications Director for two terms, leading the organisation’s shift from the Emirates Solar Industry Association to MESIA.
Marwa Mostafa Mohamed
Egyptian Electric Utility and Consumer Protection Regulatory Agency(EgyptERA)
Senior Planning Engineer

Marwa Mostafa Khalil graduated in 1998 with a B.Sc. in electrical engineering from the faculty of engineering, Cairo University, Egypt. She works as a senior planning engineer at the Egyptian Electric Utility and Consumer Protection Regulatory Agency (EgyptERA). Currently, she is responsible for planning policy instruments and drafting regulations relevant to the Egyptian electricity sector restructuring, RE integration into the Egyptian grid, and Smart Grid applications. She also has publications in the same field. Previously, she worked as a planning engineer for the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company and as an engineer for power systems operations at the National Energy Control Centre in Egypt.  
Khaled Al Huraimel
Group Chief Executive Officer
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

In his role as Group Chief Executive Officer of Bee’ah, Khaled Al Huraimel oversees the company’s day-to-day operations and maximises the efficiency of projects by ensuring close cooperation and communication between different departments. He helped set Bee’ah at the forefront of the environmental industry – both regionally and internationally – thanks to his leadership proficiency, strategic planning prowess, deep understanding of environmental issues and strong business acumen. His steadfast mission to give back to the community of Sharjah has served as Bee’ah’s guiding ethos
Hamzeh Buqaei
BeSolar Energy Solutions
Co-founder and technical advisor

Hamzeh Buqaei is a Jordanian professional with 8-years experience in machine automation for PV manufacturing processes and thin-film modules in leading Swiss companies. Besides the engineering position, Hamzeh is the co-founder and technical advisor of BeSolar Energy Solutions in Jordan, a company offering residential and commercial sectors sustainable energy solutions with focus on solar-energy based on the thin-film technology.   He is Renewable Energy enthusiast, participated in many conferences to promote the advantages of thin-film technologies in MENA region. Having succeeded recently to obtain MBA in Renewable-energy, the topic of the final thesis has focused on this cause, by closely analyzing the potential of flexible solar modules in MENA.
Kehkashan Basu
Green Hope
Global Coordinator for Children and Youth , UNEP MGFC

Global Coordinator for Children and Youth , UNEP MGFC Youth Ambassador World Future Council Volunteer - World Youth Foundation Founder President   Kehkashan Basu, 14 years old and a year 9 student of the Deira International School, is the Global Coordinator for Children and Youth at UNEP being the youngest person , ever , to hold this position. She is also the Youth Ambassador of World Future Council, A Global Youth Ambassador for “A World At School” and the Founder President of her own organization, Green Hope UAE which regularly engages young people through their environment academies. She has spoken as the voice of children and youth at over 45 international summits spanning scores of countries, espousing the cause of sustainability by adopting a zero carbon lifestyle. She has received several international awards for her work.
Basma El Zein
King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)
Research Scientist
Saudi Arabia

Research Scientist Materials for Energy Conversion and Storage (MECS), King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)   Basma EL Zein, received her PhD in Micro-Nanotechnology from the University of Lille, France–in 2012. She got her master degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the Lebanese University, in 1999. She is currently a research scientist in the Materials for Energy conversion and energy storage laboratory at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Saudi Arabia.  Dr. El Zein, recent research interests include working on nanostructures for photovoltaic applications, where she filed one patent, published one book and many papers in international journals. She is a senior IEEE member, reviewer in many international journals, the chair and on the committee of many international conferences.
Cornelius Matthes
Managing Director Middle East North Africa
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Cornelius Matthes held a number of different roles within Deutsche Bank Group, where he was appointed board member in Italy. In 2010, Cornelius joined Dii as Director Business Alliances. Among his duties, he was responsible for building Dii’s Shareholder and Associated Partner network. In January 2014, he joined global IPP Building Energy as Managing Director MENA to set up and lead the new regional headquarters in Dubai. The company successfully qualified for a major PV project in Egypt and is shortlisted for round II in Jordan. Cornelius studied Business Administration in Germany and Italy and wrote his master thesis in New York (USA). He is guest lecturer at several universities.
Adam Hammond
Bluetech Financing Solutions
Chief Executive Officer
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Tareq Khalifeh

Shihab Mohammed Solaiman
Mechanical Engineering
MSc. Graduate Student
United Arab Emirates

Jeremy Crane
Yellow Door
Chief Executive Officer
United Arab Emirates

Erik Voldner
Founding partner and Executive Director of Operations
United Arab Emirates