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Celebrating International Women’s Day with 4 Concordia alumnae

Meet some of the inspiring women leading across sectors
March 8, 2024

Four headshots women pictured side-by-side From left: Farah Ahmad, MBA 07, Ruma Ahmed, BEng 22, Lisa White, BA 06, and Rana Ghorayeb, BA 97, MEng 01.

Around the world, March 8 marks International Women’s Day, a celebration of the achievements of girls and women throughout history and those who lead the way for a brighter tomorrow.

View our video interviews with four Concordia women blazing trails in their respective fields as they inspire, mentor and empower those who follow:

A woman with dark, pulled-back hair smiles at the camera. She is wearing a navy blazer over a white blouse with coloured flowers on it “Empathy to me is one of the most important qualities [to succeeding as a leader].”

Farah Ahmad, MBA 07

President, Life Sciences, Press Ganey

With more than 20 years of experience in clinical development, Farah Ahmad joined health-care company Press Ganey in 2022 to help improve the patient experience through advanced technologies that help gain real-time insights. She has previously held senior positions at Clinical Maestro Syneos Health and inVentiv Health.

As an MBA student at Concordia, Ahmad was a competing team member in the John Molson MBA International Case Competition and member of the Beta Gamma Sigma International Honour Society. In 2023, she was named among the university’s 50 Under 50 Shaping Tomorrow.

A woman smiles to the camera and is wearing a light pink head covering and white blazer “I want to ensure that everyone has the resources they need to grow as equals.”

Ruma Ahmed, BEng 22

Supply chain and logistics analyst, CHUM

Throughout her studies at Concordia, Ruma Ahmed was committed to helping to bridge the gender gap in engineering and computer science through her involvement with the university’s chapter of Women in Engineering.

She joined its executive team in 2018 to help develop an outreach program that encourages young girls to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). For her achievements and dedication to equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI), Ahmed was honoured with a Concordia Alumni Recognition Award in 2022.

A woman smiles to the camera and has a teal-coloured background behind her. She has dark curly hair and is wearing black-framed glasses and a black shirt. “The idea of mentorship and having people really take an interest and investment into your development is something that can’t be understated.”

Lisa White, BA 06

Executive director, Concordia University Equity Office

After launching its Equity Office in 2020, Concordia appointed Lisa White as its inaugural executive director.

With a mandate to oversee the strategic implementation of recommendations centered on advancing EDI at the university, White works with the Indigenous Directions Leadership CouncilBlack Perspectives Office and the President’s Taskforce on Anti-Black Racism, whose mandates include addressing systemic racism.

Prior her appointment to the Equity Office, White served as director of Concordia’s Office of Rights and Responsibilities since 2018. Her advocacy and policy work in academic spaces began at the university when she joined the Concordia Student Union Advocacy Centre in 2006.

A woman with long, light brown hair smiles at the camera, she is sitting in an office and is wearing a white blouse. “Mentorship is fundamental to the growth of an individual and especially to the growth of a leader.”

Rana Ghorayeb, BA 97, MEng 01

President and CEO, Otera Capital

After getting her start in the construction industry, Rana Ghorayeb soon set her sights on real-estate investment. She now serves as president and CEO of Otera Capital, a division of the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ). In her previous role at CDPQ, Ghorayeb managed a portfolio of more than $20 billion, which included projects like London’s Heathrow Airport and the port of Brisbane, Australia.

Today, she is responsible for developing Otera’s strategic directions and overseeing the organization’s activities. In recognition of her leadership, Ghorayeb has received a number of awards, including the Inspiration-Andrée-Corriveau 2022 award from the Association de femmes en finances du Québec (AFFQ) and the Prix du Cèdre et de l’Érable 2019 from the Chambre de commerce Liban-Canada. In 2019, Ghorayeb was named one of Concordia's 50 Under 50 Shaping Business


Learn more about Concordia's Women Who LEAD program and join us at our next event, Reversing the Trend: Women Who Lead in Male-Dominated Fields.



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