It’s not every day that we have a female appointed as an authoritative figure, and most certainly never had a female Christian governor. We were surprised to know that president El-Sisi appointed Manal Mikhail as the new governor of Damietta; making her the second female governor, and first ever female Christian governor in Egypt’s history.
Mikhail was appointed on Friday by El-Sisi in the new provincial governors for 22 – which included other female deputy governors in governorates like Giza, Red Sea, Beheira, Al-Qalubiya and Al-Wady Al-Gedeed.
While we are all pleasantly surprised by the much-needed diversity in Egypt’s provincial governors, little is known about Mikhail.
So who is this woman that is making history?
Manal Mikhail is a 51-year-old Egyptian woman who graduated with a Veterinary Science degree from the University of Benha in 1989, and later received her Master’s Degree in 1995 and a PhD in 1999 – both from the University of Alexandria in Natural Sciences.
Throughout her career, Mikhail spent over 20 years working in her field in numerous jobs and served as a member in several scientific associations. For all her contributions, Mikhail received a “State Encouragement Award” in the science category for her research and studies into the immune systems of livestock and the impact of specific strains of viruses and infections.
Mikhail joined the Ministry of Agriculture’s Institute of Veterinary Serums and Vaccines for Research and Studies in 2015. Shortly after, Mikhail was appointed as the deputy governor of Giza.
During her role as deputy governor of Giza, Mikhail was responsible for the informal settlements in the Giza governorate, and eventually solved the issue and announced in a year that Giza is officially free of informal settlements.
Mikhail was able to obtain a large number of funding from international organizations for the development of informal settlements in Giza; eventually maintaining a good relationship with NGOs that contributed to several projects in the governorate.
In addition to solving the informal settlement issues, Mikhail was able to steady plan for street markets and vendors in Giza, as well as adopting women’s issues.
Due to her hard work; Mikhail received the UNESCO Prize for Learning Cities for the year 2017, where only 16 cities worldwide were given the award as part of the third World Conference of Learning Cities held in Cork, Ireland.
In conclusion, Manal Mikhail is, not just a woman, but the person we need as an authoritative figure in the country for a better future. We can’t wait to see what she will be doing next. We have a feeling it would be something great!