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Nina Ansary

Author and Historian
Director, WACA's  Global Women's Lecture Series

Dr. Nina Ansary is an award-winning Iranian American author, historian, and women’s rights activist. She is the Director of the World Affairs Councils of America (WACA) Global Women’s Lecture Series, Director of the Cambridge Middle East and North Africa Forum Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) at the University of Cambridge, and UN Women Global Champion for Innovation.

Her books Anonymous Is a Woman: A Global Chronicle of Gender Inequality (Revela Press/2020) and Jewels of Allah: The Untold Story of Women in Iran (Revela Press/2015) received multiple awards, including the 2016 International Book Award in “Women’s Issues” (Jewels of Allah) and the 2021 Benjamin
Franklin Book Award in “Interior Design” and “History” (Anonymous Is a Woman).

Nina is the recipient of the 2020 Columbia University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Alumni Award, the 2019 Ellis Island Medal of Honor, the 2018 Barnard College, Columbia University Trailblazer Award, and has appeared on CNN International, Fox News, Larry King, the Today Show, the BBC, Sky News and featured in Time, Newsweek, Maria Shriver’s The Sunday Paper, The Los Angeles Times,, and Teen Vogue. She has presented her work on women’s rights at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace, and Security, the London School of Economics, the UN Social Good and Girl Up Leadership Summits, and at Columbia, Harvard, Oxford, and Cambridge University.

Nina holds an MA in Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies and a Ph.D. in History from Columbia University. She serves on the International Advisory Board of the Cambridge Middle East and North Africa Forum
(MENAF); a think-tank based at the University of Cambridge, the Board of Trustees of the Iranian American Women Foundation (IAWF), and the Board of Directors of My Stealthy Freedom (MSF); an independent, nonpartisan, non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of Iranian women’s actions to secure their rights.

She can be found on Twitter @drninaansary | Instagram @ninaansary | Facebook

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