Middle East/North Africa (MENA)

Iman BibarsDr. Iman Bibars

Iman is the Regional Director for Ashoka Arab World (AAW) which she launched in 2003. Iman is a Leadership Group Member and Global Diaspora Leader in Ashoka.  She is the co-founder and chair of ADEW, a CSO providing credit and legal aid for impoverished women. With more than 30 years of experience in strategic planning, policy formulation, community development and project design, Iman has dedicated her life to working with marginalized and voiceless groups -female heads of households in Egypt's poorest areas. Iman has also worked with UNICEF, Catholic Relief Services, CARE-Egypt, GTZ and KFW.  Iman holds a PhD in Development Studies from Sussex University and a BA and MA in Political Science from American University in Cairo. She was a Peace Fellow at Georgetown University and a Parvin Fellow at Princeton University. Iman has been featured in several national and international press outlets and also authored the books Heroines and Victims: Women, Welfare, and the Egyptian State, Dreams of a Good Fellow, one of the first books written in Arabic on US President Barack Obama, and the Women of Tahrir.


Luzette Jaimes

A social thinker and doer, passionate about intentional entrepreneurship and system change. Luzette is based in Cairo, managing Ashoka Arab World operations. This position came after holding other entrepreneurial roles at Ashoka’s various initiatives and geographies since 2002. In 2009, Luzette dedicated a year researching and writing about life-transformation in a holistic (think -systems thinking), entrepreneurial, and sustainable way. Previous to Ashoka, Luzette worked at UN-ECLAC, OAS, and the US Chamber of Commerce in Washington, DC. Luzette holds a BA in Finance and International Relations from Externado University in Colombia, a degree on International Business and Trade from American University, and an MSc in Holistic Science from Schumacher College-University of Plymouth. In her free time, Luzette coaches individuals on creation of authentic meaning and happiness and works to support Women’s Engagement in Social Entrepreneurship.


Lameece Gasser, Fellowship Assistant
Lameece joined Ashoka to be part of the global movement shaping a culture of social entrepreneurship, through working on the Ashoka Fellowship Program. She strongly feels that empowering everyone to be a change-maker is the first step to ensuring long lasting change. While managing the Global Exchange Program in the Egypt branch of AIESEC, the world's largest student run organization, Lameece was inspired by the impact that many people sharing one idea can have, and she saw great potential if these ideas could be used to create a sustainable development movement to eliminate the root causes of social problems. Lameece graduated from the German University in Cairo with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Informatics.

Nariman Moustafa, Operations Assistant
Nariman is a dynamic young woman, who indulged in many initiatives trying to help improve the quality of life for people living in her local community. She has been involved in leading positions with international student organizations like SIFE and AIESEC. She is passionate about education; inter cultural dialogue, and Social Entrepreneurship. Nariman studied dentistry and found out during university time that in Social Entrepreneurship lays the true solution to all our Arab community’s social problems, which was the reason beyond her joining forces with Ashoka Arab World to help in creating an enabling environment for social innovation in the region.

Rana Rizk, Venture Assistant
As Ashoka Arab World’s Venture Assistant, Rana Rizk is our eyes and ears when it comes to identifying social entrepreneurs and guiding them through the selection process to become Ashoka Fellows. She has spent the previous five years working in human rights in Egypt, Dubai and United Stataes, having attained a Master’s in International Development from the United Nations Training Center.




Khaled Gamal Soliman, Financial and Administrative Manager
Before joining Ashoka, Khaled worked as an auditor at the Central Auditing Organization of Egypt since 1989, where he audited the agreements and contracts between the Egyptian government and foreign donors, such as USAID and the UNDP. His previous work experience helped Khaled to learn more about the financial systems used by foreign donors. Consequently, he has had no problem putting his knowledge and experience to good use in his job at Ashoka, where he has been the Financial and Administrative Manager since June 2007. Khaled feels that his position at Ashoka enables him to grow both professionally and personally.