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Board of Trustees

MAS is governed by a Board of Trustees consisting of 9-17 prominent public figures who have held public or academicposts and who have been part of the Palestinian academic and public life for significant period of time. Members are appointed through an internal process for a three-year term that may be renewed only twice. The Board is non-partisan with no ideological affiliation.
The “Board Executive” comprising the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer and the Director General, meets every three months and as needed to attend to urgent matters.
The Board normally convenes annually, and is responsible for securing financial resources and approving the Institute’s annual plan and budget. It appoints the Director General, and confirms the appointmentof the Director of Research and the Financial and Administrative Director upon the recommendation of the Director General. The Board is responsible for ratifying the Institute’s policies, regulations and organizational structure, as well as for safeguarding the Institute’s independence and integrity in its pursuit of its mission and objectives.

The current Board members are as follows :


Nabeel Kassis
(Chairman)
Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Palestine Capital Market Authority(PCMA)
Member of several boards and committees including the Advisory Committee to Anti-Corruption Council and the Trustees Board of Yasser Arafat Foundation. 
Formerly: Director General, Palestine Economic Policy Research Institute (MAS). (2014-2019); Minister of Finance of the Palestinian National Authority (2012-2013); President of Birzeit University (2004-2010); Minister of Planning (2003–2004); Minister of Tourism and Antiquities(2002-2003); Minister in Charge, Bethlehem 2000 Project (1998-2002); Coordinator, Ministerial Reform Committee (2002-2004); Director General/ Palestine Institute for Economic Policy Research (MAS) (1994–1998); Member of the Board and of the Audit Committee, Palestine Monetary Authority (PMA); Chairman of the Audit Committee of the Ministry of Finance (2009-2012); Director General/ Technical and Advisory Committees, Palestinian Team to Peace Negotiations (1993-1994); Member/ Palestinian Team to the Madrid Peace Conference; Deputy Head/ Palestinian Delegation to the Peace Talks in Washington (1992-1993). Member respectively Head of Delegation: Peace Negotiations in Cairo (1995-1996); Member, Palestinian Team to Final Status Negotiations, 1999. Frequent participant in second-track negotiations, (1997-2003); Member, World Scientific Council 2004-2008, UNESCO. Chairman of the Board of Trustees/Palestine Economic Policy Research Institute (MAS), 2012.
Retired Professor of Physics with Ph.D. degree in Theoretical Nuclear Physics, American University of Beirut (1972), and M.Sc. degree in Nuclear Physics, University of Mainz, Germany (1969). Held academic ranks and research fellowships at the University of Jordan (1972-1978), the University of Sussex, England (1978-1980) and Birzeit University (1980- 2004); Germany, Britain, France and Italy (1973-1990). Has numerous publications in theoretical nuclear physics as well as many articles and interviews on issues relevant to the Palestinian scene, including politics, economy, culture and education.
 Invited Participant to Conferences: World Economic Forum, Davos, 1999, 2000; InterAction  
Council, Dead Sea 2006; World Federation of Scientists, Erice, 2007, 2008;  IV Foro Formentor, 
 Mallorca, 2003; World Scientific Council, UNESCO, Paris, 2005, 2006; Global Colloquium of University Presidents, Princeton, 2006.     
 
 
 

Maher Almasri
Vice Chairman 
Chairman of the board of Palestine Islamic Bank. He worked as an economist in Lebanon, UK, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Palestine. In 1996, he was elected to the Palestinian Legislative Council (Parliament) and later served as Minister of National Economy until 2005. As a Minister, he chaired the Palestinian Investment Promotion Agency (PIPA), Palestine Standards Institution (PSI) and Palestinian Industrial Estates and Free Zone Authority (PIEFZA). He was the Chairman of Palestine Capital Markets Authority (PCMA) from 2006 till 2014. Presently he is a member of the board of the Palestine Investment Fund (PIF) and the Chairman of Palestine Stock Exchange.
Mr. Masri holds BA and MA degree in economics from the American University of Beirut.
 
 
 

Ola Awad
Secretary
 
President of the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) and Former President of the International Association of Official Statistics (IAOS) for the years 2013 -2017.
Dr. Awad is an active chief statistician in a number of national, regional and international agencies. Internationally, she is currently a council member in the International Statistical Institute (ISI) for the years (2017-2019). She represents the Arab region in the High-level group for Partnership, Coordination and Capacity-building for Statistics for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (HLG-SDGs). She is a permanent member of the Women’s Committee of the International Statistics Institute (ISI) in addition to her membership in the ASPEN’s Middle Leadership Initiative. Regionally, she is a Board member of the Statistical, Economic and Social Research and Training Center for Islamic Countries, member of the international advisory committee of Abu Dhabi Statistics Center (SCAD), member of the Board of Trustees of the Arab Institute for Research and Training in Statistics, member of the Board of Directors of the Union of Arab Statisticians, member of the Permanent Executive Committee of Statistics in the Secretariat General of the Arab League. 
Nationally, Dr. Awad is the Secretary General of the Palestinian Statistical Advisory Council,   Member of Board of Palestinian Economic Policy Research Institute-MAS, Member of the Palestinian Supreme Council of Youth and Sports, Member of the Board of Trustees of Yasser Arafat Foundation, Member of the Board of Trustees of the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy "MIFTAH", Member of the Executive Office of the Palestinian Olympic Committee, Member of the Advisory Board in "This Week in Palestine" Magazine.
 Dr. Awad has a number of published research papers on many topics including: Sustainable Development, Gender issues, Labor Market, The Palestinian Economical Situation, Good Governance, Data Dissemination, and Management of Statistical Institutions Under Crises.
She holds a PhD in Business Administration in 2016 from the University of Liverpool and an MA in Applied Statistics from Birzeit University in 2013, and MA in Business Administration from Boston University in 2000 and a BA in Economics from Birzeit University in 1997.
 
 
 
Azzam Shawwa
Treasurer
 
Mr. Azzam Al-Shawwa was born in Kuwait City in 1963, and in the same year he moved with his family to Gaza City in Palestine. He completed his education from Lemoyne-Owen College in Memphis, Tennessee, USA in 1988, where he obtained a BA in Mathematics.
 His Excellency Mr. Azzam Shawwa held the position of Governor of the Palestinian Monetary Authority and Chairman of its Board of Directors for five years, from 20/11/2015 to 3/1/2021. During that period, he also headed the National Anti-Money Laundering Committee and the Board of Directors of the Palestinian Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Banking Institute. On April 29, 2018, he was awarded the "Golden Union Medal for Achievement" by the Union of Arab Banks.
In 2003, Mr. Shawwa was appointed Minister of Energy and Natural Resources in the Palestinian National Authority, where he spent more than three years in this position marked by remarkable activity. The year 2007 witnessed the peak of His Excellency Mr. Shawa's involvement in the banking business, as he assumed the position of General Manager of Al Quds Bank. In 2012, His Excellency Mr. Shawwa chaired the Board of Directors of the Association of Banks in Palestine, where he tangibly activated its role in serving the member banks and the banking sector in general. In March 2013, Mr. Shawwa joined Palestine Commercial Bank as its General Manager.
Since its establishment in 2002, Mr. Shawwa has been a prominent member of the Board of Directors of the Palestine Investment Fund, which represents the state's sovereign fund and its investment arm. It operates as an independent investment institution that aims to contribute effectively to sustainable economic development. Mr. Shawa is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Palestine Future Foundation for Children. He is also an active member of the boards of directors of several local and international organizations and institutions, the most important of which are: the Businessmen Association, the Young Presidents Organization (YPO), the Palestinian Power Generation Company, the Welfare Association, the Mahmoud Abbas Foundation, and the Yasser Arafat Foundation. Mr. Shawwa is also a member of the Union of Arab Banks.
 Mr. Shawa previously chaired the board of directors of several institutions, the most important of which are Reef Lending, NatHealth, Gaza Sports Club, Atfaluna Association for Deaf Children, Palestinian Weightlifting Federation, and membership in the Board of Trustees of Al-Quds Open University and the Education for Employment Foundation.
 
 
Ismail Alzabri
 Economist. Deputy Governor of Palestine at the Arab Fund for Economic & Social Development. Chairman of Welfare's General Assembly and member of its Committees on Strategy & Governance, Resource Development and Programs & Projects. Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Student Loan Fund. Member of the Board of Trustees of BirZeit University and of its Executive and Resource Development Committee. Member of the General Assembly of Alami's Agricultural Project in Jericho. Former trustee of ICARDA in Aleppo, Welfare Association, the Arab Thought Forum in Amman, the Arab American University in Jenin, Tamkeen (DEEP) Program. Former member of the Board of Directors of the Palestine Monetary Authority (PMA) and chairman of its Audit Committee. Former member of the Board of Directors of the Students Loan Fund.
Ph. D. in Agricultural Economics, 1968, University of Illinois, USA.
 
 

 
Bassim S. Khoury
 
  Currently: 
  • Chairman and CEO of Pharmacare plc. 

Serves on the following boards:

  • Birzeit University and on its Executive Committee.
  • The Palestinian Music Conservatory.
  • Palestine Deposit Insurance Corporation
  • St. Yves Society for Legal & Human Rights and acts as its treasurer. 
     

Formerly:

  • Palestinian Minister of National Economy (2009).
  • Elected twice as President of the Palestinian Federation of Industries (2006 and 2009).
  • President of the Union of Palestinian Pharmaceutical Manufacturers (UPPM) (2001-2004);
  • Board member of Palestine Trade Promotion Organization; and Palestinian Trade Center – Paltrade (1993-2002); and Board of Palestinian Pharmaceutical Association, and as the Head of its Scientific Committee 1992-1994. 

Holds B.A. in Industrial Pharmacy, 1983, School of Pharmacy, University of Oklahoma, USA.

 
 
 
Khaled Zuhair Osaily
A pioneer businessman and private sector leader. 
Current Positions: 
  Chairman of: Osaily Trading & Contracting Company; The National Aluminum & Profile Company (NAPCO); Excellence Trading & Contracting (ETC).
  Vice Chairman, Arab Palestinian Investment Company (APIC) 
  Member of BOD/BOT in:  Gaza Power Generating Company (GPGC); Middle East University – Jordan (2012-now); AL-Quds University, Jerusalem (2014- now); Palestine National Council (1995-now); the Municipal Development and Lending Fund; the Palestinian Pension Agency; and the Palestinian Charity Authority for Solidarity with Poor Families.
Formerly:
  Mayor, Hebron Municipality (2007-2012).
  Founder and Board Member, PALTEL (1996 -1999)
  Member of BOD/BOT in: Palestinian Monetary Authority (2002-2005); Palestinian Municipal Fund (2009-2013) Hyundai Palestine (PAC) and Al-Mashriq insurance (MIC).
  Vice chairman of: United cities MENA & West Asia (2008- 2013); SKY and PLAZA.
Hold B.S. in Business Administration, Cairo University (1970), Egypt.
 
 
 
 Mohamed Mustafa
Chairman of the Board of Directors, the Palestine Investment Fund (PIF). Senior Advisor to the President of the State of Palestine on Economic Affairs. As Senior Advisor to the President, Dr. Mustafa is a senior member of the Palestinian negotiations team for permanent status issues and the lead on the economic affairs portfolio.

He has launched a number of start-ups and companies, including PalTel, Wataniya Mobile, and Massader for Natural Resources and Infrastructure, as well as investment funds, such as the Rasmalah Palestine Equity Fund and the Sharakat Fund for SMEs. He facilitated the IPOs and exits of Saudi Telecom, Orange Jordan, PalTel, and Wataniya, and was instrumental in building the Palestinian Islamic banking sector. He served as Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs in 2013 and as Deputy PM and Minister of National Economy from 2013-2014.


Internationally, Dr. Mustafa held senior positions across a variety of sectors at the World Bank, Washington, D.C., for a period of fifteen years. He was the Economic Advisor to the Government of Kuwait on economic reform, and Advisor to the Public Investment Fund in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Dr. Mustafa served as a as Visiting Professor at the George Washington University.

Dr. Mustafa was born in Palestine in 1954. He holds PhD and Master’s degrees from the George Washington University and a BSc degree from Baghdad University.

 

 

 
 
 Mohammad Nasr
Currently:
Chairman of the Board of Directors of Amaar Real Estate and Tourism Development Co.
Associate Professor of Economics at Birzeit University.
Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of Arab Islamic Bank.
Board Member of Palestine Investment Fund and Sanad Construction Resources Co. 
Formerly:
Chairman of Palestine Economic Policy Research Institute (MAS) (24/4/2018-23/4/2021)
Dean of Faculty of Business and Economics, Birzeit University (2011-2014) (1996-1999).
Chairman of the Board of Directors of Palestine Capital Market Authority (2014-2015).
Vice Chairman of the Board of Jericho Agro and Industrial Park (2012-2017).
Director General, Palestine Economic Policy Research Institute (MAS) (2007-2008).
Chairman of the Board, Palestine Governance Institute (2011-2014).
Board Member, Palestine Central Election Committee (2008-2011)
Director, MBA Program, Birzeit University (1999-2002).
Chairman, Economics Department (1991-1993) and Associate Professor of Economics (1986-1994), Yarmouk University, Jordan.
Dr. Nasr holds Ph.D. in Economics, 1986, and Master Degrees in Economics, 1981, both from Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA, and MBA, )1980) from Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, USA. He has numerous publications in Industrial Economics and Economic Development.
 
 
 
 
Samia Totah
 
 Born and raised in Ramallah, Palestine. Samia completed a BA degree in Industrial Design from San Francisco State University  in 1987 and worked for three years in California, USA.  Samia received an Executive MBA degree from Northwestern University’s International Kellogg-Recanati program in 2013.
She is a co-founder and CEO of Bisan Systems Ltd, a software house established in Ramallah - Palestine in 1988,  specializing in Complete Financial Management ERP Solutions serving the private, governmental, non-profit and microfinance sectors.  Bisan Systems serves various countries and sectors with 40% of its sales outside Palestine. 
She is a founding member of the Business Women Forum-Palestine established in 2006 and currently an active member.  Samia is the first woman from the Palestinian private sector to serve on the Board of Directors of the Palestine Monetary Authority from 2016 until 2019. Samia has been a member of Birzeit University Board of Trustees since 2017. She is the mother of two girls.
 
 
 Rita Giacaman
 
 
Professor of public health at the Institute of Community and Public Health, Birzeit University, occupied Palestinian territory. Founder of the Institute in 1978, she also served as a committee member for the establishment of the Women's Studies Institute at Birzeit University in 1993. As a researcher/practitioner Rita collaborated closely with the 1980’s Palestinian social action movement, which led to the development of the Palestinian primary health care model and the establishment of the first women’s health program. In the 1990s, she also participated in building the Palestinian community-based disability rehabilitation network. Rita has chronicled the effects of Israeli military occupation on the physical and mental health of Palestinians. Since 2000, she has been focusing on the impact of chronic war-like conditions and exposure to political violence on the health and well-being of Palestinians, with an emphasis on psychosocial health and its relation to physical health. Her work entails the development of measures to assess psychosocial health which are relevant and appropriate for context, and ways in which interventions could generate active and positive resilience and resistance to ongoing war like conditions, especially among youth. Rita has published extensively on women's health and mental health in wars and conflicts from a multidisciplinary public health perspective. 
 
She was awarded an honorary PhD from the LSE in 2011 for having made an "outstanding contribution to the increased understanding or appreciation of ' the causes of things..'" She was also awarded the title of International Fellow of the Society for Research on Adolescence in 2018 for her 'internationally and culturally sensitive approach to the understanding of adolescence worldwide’, and awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science degree (honoris causa) from King’s College London, for her work which 'has set a standard for the provision of health care in war and post-war contexts in the Middle East and globally,’ October 16, 2019. She is one of three coordinators and a Steering Group member of the Lancet Palestinian Health Alliance. Currently, she is also serving as a Commissioner for the Lancet Commission on Syria, and the Lancet Commission on Human Rights and Health.
 
 
 
Salim Tamari
 
Salim Tamari is IPS senior fellow and the former director of the IPS-affiliated Institute of Jerusalem Studies. He is editor of Jerusalem Quarterly and Hawliyyat al Quds.
He is professor of sociology at Birzeit University and an adjunct professor at the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University. He has authored several works on urban culture, political sociology, biography and social history, and the social history of the Eastern Mediterranean.

Recent publications include: Year of the Locust: Palestine and Syria during WWI (UC Press, 2010) Ihsan's War: The Intimate Life of an Ottoman Soldier (IPS, Beirut, 2008); The Mountain Against the Sea (University of California Press, 2008); Biography and Social History of Bilad al Sham (edited with I. Nassar,2007, Beirut IPS); Pilgrims, Lepers, and Stuffed Cabbage: Essays on Jerusalem's Cultural History (edited, with I. Nassar, IJS, 2005) and Essays on the Cultural History of Ottoman and Mandate Jerusalem (editor, IJS, 2005).
Tamari has served as visiting professor, University of California at Berkeley (2005, 2007, 2008); Eric Lane Fellow, Cambridge University (2008); lecturer in Mediterranean Studies Venice University (2002-present); among other posts.

 

 
 
 
Sam Bahour
Palestinian-American based in Al-Bireh/Ramallah, Palestine and is managing partner of Applied Information Management (AIM), a consulting firm specializing in business development with a niche focus on start-ups and providing executive counsel. 
Bahour was instrumental in the establishment of two publicly traded firms: the Palestine Telecommunications Company (PALTEL) and the Arab Palestinian Shopping Center. He is currently an independent director at the Arab Islamic Bank, board of trustee member at the Ramallah Friends School, advisory board member of the Open Society Foundations’ Arab Regional Office, and completed a full term as a board of trustees member and board treasurer at Birzeit University. In addition to his presidential appointment to serve as a general assembly member of the Palestine Investment Fund, Palestine’s $1B sovereign wealth fund, Bahour serves in various capacities in several community organizations, including co-founder and chairman of Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy, board member of Just Vision in New York, board member and policy adviser at Al-Shabaka, the Palestinian Policy Network, and secretariat member of the Palestine Strategy Group, among others.
Bahour earned his Bachelor of Science in Applied Science degree in Computer Technology from Youngstown State University and his Master of Business Administration degree from the Kellogg-Recanati International Executive MBA, a joint program of the top-rated Kellogg School of Management (Northwestern University) and the Recanati Business School (Tel Aviv University).  
He speaks and writes frequently on Palestinian affairs and has been widely published in leading outlets such as the New York Times, the Guardian, and Haaretz, among others. He is co-editor of HOMELAND: Oral History of Palestine and Palestinians (1993) and has been on NPR, CNN, BBC, and numerous other radio and TV programs.
 

 

 
Haytham Al-Zubi
 
A prominent lawyer and legal adviser and he is highly experienced in business, corporate & investment laws and the related regulatory, transactional and advocacy environment. His outstanding expertise is related to different economic sectors including Telecommunication and ICT, Financial and Fiscal sectors, Energy, in M&A, capital market laws and regulations. Equally, He has extensive practice in arbitration and litigation.
Advocate Al-Zubi took a leading part in the preparation and drafting of the Palestinian Basic Law (current constitution), and has contributed substantially to the drafting of a significant number of commercial, corporate and investment, fiscal as well as ICT laws and regulations in Palestine. 
After earning his LLM degree from the University of Edinburgh in the UK in 1994, he re-inaugurated the highly regarded Al-Zubi Law Office which was established in 1963.  This office represents and advises several renowned national and international institutions and corporations with business stakes in Palestine.
Mr. Al-Zubi has a deep interest to developing educational quality in Palestine and he prominently contributed to the establishment of the Law Institute at Birzeit University where he was a part-time lecturer for Master law students 1997-2003. In 2006, he founded with a group of entrepreneurs the distinctive PIONEERS Baccalaureate Schools in Nablus- Palestine where he still serves as a board and member of trustees. And he served in the Board of Trustees for The National Independent Fund for Students` Lending over the period 2013-2016. 
In 2014 Al-Zubi was selected by the ICC World Council as a member in the ICC International Court of Arbitration (Paris) which is one of the most highly regarded legal forums worldwide and is still holding this post. 
Al-Zubi published leading articles and legal studies, concerning governance, contracts, arbitration and the constitutionality of the functions and powers of the branches of the Government in Palestine.
 
Raja Khalidi 
(Ex-Officio)
 
 
Currently is the Director General of the Palestine Economic Policy Research Institute (MAS). 
Khalidi had been the Research Coordinator at MAS since 2016. He previously worked at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) from 1985 to 2013, and was the Coordinator of its Program of Assistance to the Palestinian people from 2000 to 2006. He spent his last 5 years at UNCTAD as the head of the Office of the Director of the Division of Globalization and Development Strategies, which led UNCTAD’s response to the global economic crisis and its participation in the G-20 process. He was also a consultative member of the Welfare Association (Taawon), a founding member of the Family Relief Fund in Palestine (Geneva), and a member of the MAS Board of Trustees from 2007 to 2013. 
 
Mr. Khalidi hold M.Sc. in Development Economics, 1981, from the University of London (SOAS), UK. He prepared and published numerous papers and reports on the economic situation and development policies in the occupied Palestinian territories, and on the Arab economy in Israel.