Last night saw His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces present the prestigious Abu Dhabi Awards to this year’s deserving recipients during a glittering ceremony at the Emirates Palace.
The 2007 Award recipients were honoured for their valuable contributions to the Emirate of Abu Dhabi during the ceremony, which was also attended by members of the Royal family, members of the Executive Council, leading business figures and other dignitaries from the Emirate, and the winners’ families.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan underscored the commitment of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi to the Abu Dhabi Awards and expressed gratitude that the program continues to preserve the legacy of the nation’s father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.
This year’s deserving recipients included high-ranking government officials and advisors, environmental campaigners, female pioneers in the fields of military and education, social activists and charity workers.
The 34,294 nominations received went through a vigorous review process review by a specially appointed judging committee.
Winners of the Abu Dhabi Awards 2007 are:
His Excellency Mohamed Ahmed Al Bowardi: Presently the Secretary-General of the Executive Council of Abu Dhabi. H.E. Al Bowardi is also the Managing Director of the Environment Agency Abu Dhabi. From a personal and public policy perspective, protection of the environment and sustainable development are two of H.E. Al Bowardi’s highest priorities. He has made a significant contribution to the conservation of a range of endangered species in the UAE and wider region, including the Houbara Bustard, Saker Falcon, Arabian Oryx, dugong and sea turtle.
The late Omeir bin Youssef: A well-known businessman, Mr. Omeir bin Youssef has contributed tirelessly to charity since before the federation of the UAE and throughout his lifetime by building houses, sponsoring residents, supporting citizens by covering medical expenses and pilgrimages to Mecca. He also personally oversaw regular and mass distribution of food, water and supplies in the Emirate.
His Excellency Zakki Nusseibh: Personal interpreter and advisor to the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, H.E. Nusseibh is a long-time patron of the arts and has made valuable contributions to Abu Dhabi in the field of culture. Fluent in seven languages, H.E. Nusseibh began his career as a journalist and went on to become Advisor to the Presidential Court, a role which he still performs today. His contribution to arts and culture continues today as a Board member for the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage.
Brigadier Dr. Asma Sultan Al Mughairi: A pioneer of women in the military, Dr. Al Mughairi was the first female UAE national to join the military in the 1970s. Dr. Al Mughairi began her military career as a dentist in the Al Nahyan Camp. She was ranked 1st lieutenant in 1976 and retired in 2005 as Brigadier. She retired the same year as vice president of the Medical Services Directorate but is currently an advisor at the Zayed Military Hospital.
Mr. Emad Mohammed Saad: Presently an engineer at Abu Dhabi Municipality, Mr. Saad has been responsible for spearheading environmental awareness programmes in schools and other educational institutions. As an active member of several NGOs in the country and wider region, Mr. Saad has published articles on environmental awareness in publications such as Al Fajr and also initiated a community newsletter called ‘The Young Environmentalist’ which is published by Abu Dhabi Municipality and is distributed in schools.
Mrs. Farida Siddiqui: A social activist and volunteer for the a range of charity organisations including the Red Crescent Society, Mrs. Siddiqui has been giving back to the Emirate of Abu Dhabi for more than 25 years. Her activities include helping labourers, teaching Islamic and community values to children, and giving succour to the sick and ailing.
Her Excellency Dr. Frauke Heard-Bey: Considered as one of the foremost experts on Abu Dhabi tribes and pre-union history, Dr. Heard-Bey has written numerous journals and books in various languages, her most famous being From Trucial States to the United Arab Emirates. After arriving in Abu Dhabi in 1967, Dr. Heard-Bey’s achievements also included helping to establish the Centre for Documentation and Research.
Mrs. Moza Habroosh Al Suwaidi: A pioneer in female education, Mrs. Al Suwaidi began as a school teacher in 1973 and was the first female UAE national school principal in the 70s. She was an inspirational role-model during a period that lacked female leaders in education, and was also heavily involved in establishing the Women's Union.
Mr. Ateeq Belal Al Qemzi: Presently the executive advisor to the General Manager of ADCO, Mr. Al Qemzi started as a support team member at the Abu Dhabi Petroleum Company at the early age of 13 in the 1960s before working his way up to become Deputy General Manager of ADCO. He is considered one of the leading technical experts on the operations of on-shore oil fields in Abu Dhabi.