Suaad Allami, a Vital Voice of Leadership for Iraq

“If you want to do something it is often about so much more than money. That passion can be the incentive to move out of your comfort zone and become a fighter. I did. At one point I was earning just $300 as a professional lawyer, but it didn’t matter because I was gaining so much more than money. I believe getting support via mentors is very important for young women and should be a prime focus for NGOs and governments looking to build opportunity and leadership in our women and indeed young people as a whole.”

There’s that word again, leadership.

“I cannot stay home and wait for something to happen to me. I have to create my space. I want to instill the same ideals of opportunity and passion in the women I meet, inspiring men also to see how they can benefit, if they allow their wives, mothers, sisters and daughters to find their wings. I see my role as creating leaders of the future. In fact, that is what I believe leadership is. It is not about me, it is about what I or we can give.”

Suaad’s take on leadership also of course creates scalability….

“I believe that the only way we will be able to make lasting and systemic change is if we, as a society and as female leaders also, work together. Working collectively is something that doesn’t come naturally to us as women in leadership roles -  indeed as a society  a collaborative working environment has often eluded us. I would like to use Nina as a platform to build our voices and stories into a chorus. I will use it to build awareness for my work but would also strongly invite other leaders, from the diaspora and from inside Iraq to do the same.

Together we are stronger, together we can achieve change. Together we can create an Iraq we can all be proud of.”

The dictionary definition of a leader is one who ‘ inspires confidence in other people and moves them to action’.

Thank you Suaad – for bringing this definition to life for me today.

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