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Sumaya Naser
Birzeit-Ramallah, Palestine
Sumaya Naser - PhD in Biology/Applied Botany from Hamburg University; co-founder and Board member of the Birzeit Public Library from 1997-2001.
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Sumaya Naser

Born in 1948 in Birzeit (near Ramallah) to a Christian family; educated at the Talitha Kumi College in Beit Jala/Bethlehem; studied Biology, Geography and Education at the University of Hamburg, Germany, from 1967-74;

Returned and joined Birzeit University, first as a lecturer of Biology and Ecology (1974-79); studied from 1979-82 on a DAAD scholarship and gained a doctorate in Biology/Applied Botany from Hamburg University; worked as Assistant Professor of Biology from 1982-97; also served as Assistant to the Vice-Pres. for Academic Affairs from 1986-89; co-founder and member of different women organizations, incl. the Birzeit Women Charitable Society (since 1978);

Board member of the Arab Thought Forum in Jerusalem from 1983-99 and member of its Executive Committee from 1989-94; also Board member of the Arab Studies Society since 1992; member of the Board of Directors of the Global Fund for Women, San Francisco, US; Director of the Jerusalem Center for Women, founded in 1994; involved in Israeli-Palestinian women’s initiatives for peace and co-founder of the Jerusalem Link (the coordinating body of an Israeli and a Palestinian women’s center: Bat Shalom and the Jerusalem Center for Women);

Co-founder and Board member of the Birzeit Public Library from 1997-2001; one of the founders of the “Waging Peace Global Network” at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, launched in Dec. 1999; guest professor at the University of Augsburg, Germany, from Oct. 2003; co-founder of the German-Palestinian Society;

Received many awards for her efforts as women and peace advocate, incl. the 1989 Honorary Doctorate from the Theological Faculty of the University of Münster; the Bruno-Kreisky Prize for Human Rights in 1995, the Mount Zion Award for Reconciliation in 1997, the Peace Prize of the City of Augsburg, Germany, in 2000, the Hermann-Kesten Medal from the German PEN Center in 2002, and the Bremen Solidarity Prize in 2003; her publications include her biography Thyme and Stones (1995), for which she received the Protestant Book Prize, and Daughter of the Olive Trees (2002).

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Sumaya Naser