Donna E. Shalala

This is a biography of one of the most well-known figures in the United States today. Donna Shalala holds the position of Secretary of Health and Human Services, a position she has held for the past seven years, the longest of any Secretary in U.S. history. Secretary Shalala is also a first generation Lebanese woman, born in Cleveland, Ohio and was also a Peace Corps volunteer in Iran. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree from Western College for Women in 1962 and her Ph.D. from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs of Syracuse University in 1970.


Munira Solh

Munira Solh of Broummana, Lebanon will be one of several recipients honored by the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation on August 2, 2000 in Seattle, Washington. Mrs. Solh will be one of three recipients of the Rose F.

Suha Bechara

Suha Beshara was born in 1967 in Alshayah, Beirut. She spent her childhood years between her village Deir Mimas, in Marjeyoun South Lebanon, and Alshayah.

As a child she was a courageous and smart student, but she was also known to be a trouble maker. She completed the first year of Civil Engineering at the Lebanese University, but in the following year she converted to the faculty of Applied Sciences. Beshara was an active member of the Lebanese Communist Party.


Her original name is Nouhad Haddad. She was born on November 21st, 1935 in a small house in 'zoukak el blatt' in Beirut. Her mother was a housewife and her father worked in a printing press. She was the oldest of her siblings, Yousef, Houda and Amal. Nouhad came from a relatively low-income family and lived in a one room-house with a kitchen shared by neighbors. She was a very shy child and did not have many friends at school. Instead, she was attached to her grandmother who lived in 'debbieh' village.

Hanan Al Shaykh

Hanan Al-Shaykh is a Lebanese novelist, short-story writer, journalist, and playwright. She was born in Beirut in 1945 and brought up in Ras al-Nabeh, a conservative and unfashionable sector of the city. She first attended al-'Amiliyyah's traditional Muslim girls' primary school and then the more sophisticated al-Ahliyyah School. By the age of 16, she had already published essays in the newspaper al-Nahar. Between the years 1963 and 1966 she studied at American College for Girls in Cairo.