Emerging Women Tech Leaders from Middle East & Africa



  • What would you like to know about emerging women leaders working in technology in the Middle East and Africa?  Come hear the about the experiences of some amazing tech women from Africa and the Middle East.  They are part of a program that has brought 78 women from 16 countries to work one one-month projects at various technical companies in the greater Bay Area.  They are here as guests of the US Dept of State (thanks to Hillary Clinton's vision when she was Secretary of State], involved in a program designed to develop women in those regions for leadership positions in tech firms in their home countries.  

    MODERATOR:  Maryann Hrichak

    Maryann Hrichak has been a Cultural Mentor for TechWomen since its launch in 2011.  As  such, Maryann introduces  TechWomen participants to the San Francisco Bay Area, interprets  American language, societal and professional nuances,  and establishes ongoing relationships  with an extraordinary group of emerging women leaders.  In February 2013, Maryann  traveled with  the mentor delegation to Jordan, reconnecting with many of the local emerging leaders.  Amman  introduced  TechWomen to a thriving entrepreneurial / start-up community, not unlike that of  California’s Silicon Valley.     

    Maryann has 20+ years of experience in international business management, immigration law and global communications in  corporate, government and non-profit arenas in the U.S., Asia and Europe.  She held prior positions at E&M Mayock, Context  Research Group, and the International Organization for Migration (IOM).  In 2010, she authored “Women Working within Islamic Society for Change in the Middle East,” published by the San Francisco Public Press.
Maryann received her M.A. in Social and Cultural Anthropology from the California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco and her B.A. in Classics from Georgetown University in Washington, DC.


    Mai Abualkas Temraz, Palestinian Territories- CEO, Amateur Club Training Center

    Dedicated to improving access to quality education in the Palestinian Territories, Mai is part engineer, part CEO, and part entrepreneur. She hopes to see basic electronics and technology education incorporated into school curriculum in her country. Having founded the Amateur Club Training Center, which provides technical STEM training to youth, Mai has already made great strides toward her mission. Prior to starting her own business, Mai held many different job titles and responsibilities, from tech support, to technical training, to engineering. Collectively, these experiences help ensure each student she works with at Amateur Club gains dynamic and practical skills in technology. Not one to stay in her comfort zone, Mai is energized by challenges and complex problems. One of Mai’s proudest accomplishments is becoming the first Palestinian female Amateur Radio Operator.

    Dayana Tarraf, Lebanon -Advanced Software Engineer, Touch

    Dayana is a software engineer from Lebanon who has had the opportunity to work with many reputable companies. She has managed international projects in her home country and abroad, and networked with business partners and clients of diverse nationalities. Throughout her career, Dayana has embraced exciting experiences, such as overseas assignments, to demonstrate her competencies and further develop her communication and presentation skills. Dayana is always interested in recent developments in the industry and keeps up-to-date with latest news in technology. After gaining seven years of experience in software engineering and two years in teaching, she decided to pursue her goal of becoming an entrepreneur. Dayana is in the last stage of establishing her own finance, compliance, and risk management software solutions company for banks and financial institutions. She is enhancing her knowledge in finance by obtaining international designations related to the banking and finance sectors.

    Annie Njenga, Kenya- Audience Marketing Manager, Global Brands

    Annie is passionate about technology and the changes it continues to bring to her country and her continent. She has a degree in Computer Science. After working with digital agencies, she realized that she needed to understand products and how to introduce them to the market. She decided to pursue a Diploma in Marketing as well as a Master’s in Organizational Development. This knowledge helped her immensely in her career, and she developed a love for working with technology startups. One of her greatest professional achievements was a developing a solution to address the lack of textbooks in schools located in remote areas. This initiative involved the implementation of a digital educational delivery project through the use of a simple app that runs on an affordable data-enabled mobile phones. Students could then use this app and gain access to free educational materials from Khan Academy. Through this project, 50 teachers serving 20 schools received training, impacting 1,500 students.

    Emmanuella Nzahabonimana, Rwanda- IT Service Delivery Manager, KCB Bank

    Emmanuella received her degree in Information Technology with a specialization in Network Computing from Asia Pacific University College of Innovation and Technology in Malaysia. She also holds an advanced Diploma in Computing from NCC Education, a global award-winning provider of British education. She has completed several other ICT courses and received certificates in Hardware, Computer Networking, and Software Development from Kigali Institute of Science and Technology. She is also ITIL certified. In addition to her academic achivements, Emmanuella works with KCB Bank Rwanda as the IT Service Delivery Manager. Since the beginning of her employment at KCB, she has received several individual performance awards. Apart from her full-time job, she is a member of Girls in ICT Rwanda, which empowers and encourages girls and young women to consider careers in ICT. Additionally, she is involved with Solid Africa, an NGO that helps and supports vulnerable patients in Rwandan public hospitals.



    6:00pm - 7:00pm    Networking and nibbling

    7:00pm - 8:30pm    Panel and Q&A