'Muslim Visionary' Manal Omar to Speak at MPAC Convention

October 26, 2011

Named one of the Top 500 World’s Most Influential Arabs by Arabia Business Power in 2011, one of the 500 Most Influential Muslims in the World by Georgetown University and the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre in 2009 and one of the 10 young visionaries shaping Islam in America by Islamic Magazine in 2007, Manal Omar will join the exciting lineup of speakers for MPAC's 11th Annual Convention, "Spring Forward: America's Role in A Changing World." 

With so many accolades, Omar may best be known by her touching and riveting novel, “Barefoot in Baghdad,” a poignant story of her experiences in war-torn Iraq in 2003. Omar's story of hope and despair takes the reader to the front lines of the battle, where she talks about helping women rebuild their lives as she gets to know Iraqis who are determined to rise from the ashes.

"Manal Omar captures the complex reality of living and working in war-torn Iraq, a reality that tells the story of love and hope in the midst of bombs and explosions," said Zainab Salbi, founder and CEO of Women for Women International

SEE: Manal Omar Talks About "Barefoot in Baghdad"

Omar currently serves as the director of Iraq, Iran and North African programs under the Center for Post-conflict Peace and Stability Operations at the United States Institute of Peace. She is also on the board of directors of Women Without Borders, an organization that supports women around the globe as they aim for inclusion and participation for all women. 

MPAC is honored to have such an accomplished activist with more than 15 years of experience working in the field of women's rights, peace building, humanitarian aid and development join us for the convention. Her dedication to creating dialogue on current events in the Muslim world when it comes to women's rights will be an asset to the discussion about the Arab Spring and the changing world.

Read more about Manal Omar: 

Read: Did the Iraq War help Iraqi women? If you don't already know, you'll find the answer in the "Barefoot in Baghdad" 

Read: "Qaddafi’s Death and The Challenges of Building a New Libya"

Read: "USIP appoints Manal Omar as Director of Iraq, Iran, and North Africa Programs"

Read: "US Senate Hearing Puts Women’s Human Rights in the Spotlight"  

Read: "Manal Omar, MPAC Convention Speaker, Talks about Women In Libya and the Arab Spring"

-- Miriam Baha
Communications Intern

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