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Team

 

 

MOM Team

Jihane Abdallah is the Finance Officer of the Beirut-based Samir Kassir Foundation – SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom, the leading freedom of expression NGO in the Levant region. She joined SKF in February 2012. In this capacity, Jihane manages the Foundation’s accounting, budgeting and reporting activities. She shares her extensive experience by overseeing the accounting / finance departments of The Lebanese Initiative for Oil and Gas (LOGI) and House of Peace (HOPe). She previously served as Finance Officer at Abaad – Resource Center for Gender Equality, Regional Finance Officer at Save the Children - Sweden and Accountant / Office Manager at the Arab Image Foundation. She is also a consultant for the establishment of Accounting and Finance Departments in emerging NGOs.  

Leah Ofarth (versions 2018 and 2024) previously worked with Reporters Without Borders, where she coordinated the Journalism Trust Initiative (JTI) and headed the development of its IT infrastructure. Her work focused on topics related to media transparency and literacy. She also worked on the Media Ownership Monitor project in Lebanon and Egypt, in addition to the Samir Kassir Foundation’s “Digital Rights Project”. She studied journalism in Germany (Technical University of Dortmund) and was a trainee at the West German Broadcasting Corporation. She also worked as a freelance journalist for several radio stations and online publications. Ofarth holds an MA in Conflict Resolution in Divided Societies from King's College London.

Christelle El Hayek (2024 version) has been the program coordinator and the monitoring & evaluation officer at Samir Kassir Foundation/ Center for Media and Cultural Freedom - SKeyes since December 2021, where she oversees the implementation of various projects. Previously, she worked as a program manager for the Lebanese Oil and Gas Initiative (2017-2021) on projects related to good governance in the oil and gas sector in Lebanon. She holds a MA in chemical engineering.

Nour El-Assaad (2024 version) is a translator and interpreter, with more than 15 years of notable industry experience. She worked at the National Democratic Institute, where she specialized in political and election- related terminology. In 2017, she founded L’Atelier Translations, a company that offers translation and interpretation services. Nour also translates the work of Joumana Haddad, a Lebanese journalist and poet. Nour has a MA in translation from Saint-Joseph University and another MA in interpretation from the Lebanese University.

Widad Jarbouh (2018 and 2024 versions) is a research coordinator on the issue of freedom of expression at the Samir Kassir Foundation’s Skeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom (since October 2010). She is in charge of the Lebanese and Palestinian affairs at the center, and conducts researches on media monitoring related to sensitive social and political issues. In 2018, she was the lead researcher in the Media Ownership Monitor project in Lebanon, in partnership with Reporters Without Borders. She is also the coordinator of focus groups, specializing in citizens’ media consumption patterns. She holds a BA in Journalism from the Lebanese International University and a degree in Capacity Building for Non-Profit Organizations from the Lebanese American University.

Karim Safieddine (2024 version) is a researcher at the Samir Kassir Foundation, which he joined in October 2020. He focuses in his work on conducting qualitative audience research, raising awareness on issues of digital rights, and monitoring discrimination and hate speech on social media. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Pittsburgh, and holds an MSc in Comparative Politics from the London School of Economics and a BA in Economics from the American University of Beirut.

Nafisa Hasanova, Head of Research (2024 version): Nafisa has directed the Media Ownership Monitor projects in Ukraine (2016), Serbia (2017), Albania (2018), Sri Lanka (2018), and India and Pakistan (2019). She also participated in the Journalism Trust initiative launched by Reporters Without Borders. Prior to joining Reporters Without Borders, Nafisa worked on the Transdniestrian Settlement Process for the Finnish Crisis Management Initiative (CMI), founded by the former President of Finland, Martti Ahtisaari. Prior to that, she worked as policy officer for Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia at APRODEV (now ACT Alliance EU), EU Central Asia Monitoring (EUCAM) at the Center for European Policy Studies (CEPS). Nafisa holds a MA in Intercultural Communication and European Studies from the University of Applied Sciences in Fulda, Germany. She completed a BA in English Philology from the Samarkand State Institute of Foreign Languages in Uzbekistan.

Mahmoud Younis (2018 and 2024 versions) is a senior graphic designer with 11 years of experience. He is an expert in branding, illustrations, social media, marketing and advertising. He has been Web administrator and graphic designer at the Samir Kassir Foundation since January 2015. In 2010, he created an art studio called Designosaur where he exhibited his artworks. Mahmoud is also a visual artist who participated in several exhibitions and art activities.

Micheline Khoueir (2018 and 2024 versions) is the administrative officer at the Samir Kassir Foundation – SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural freedom. She joined SKF in February 2018. She studied architecture at ALBA (Académie Libanaise des Beaux-Arts). She previously served as sales manager in the private sector. 

Clothilde Le Coz (2018 version) is a journalist and an international technical expert in media development. She works as a MOM MENA regional manager and covers Tunisia, Morocco Lebanon and Egypt. In 2015, she led the research for MOM pilot-project in Cambodia. A former director for Reporters Without Borders USA in Washington DC, she started to work in 2007 as a journalist, specialising in online freedom issues. Based in Southeast Asia from 2012 to 2016, she reported about political and social issues for international media outlets from Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar. In parallel, she worked in the media development field as an expert and a journalism trainer. Her area of expertise focuses on media independence and the role of civil society in countries in democratic transition. Clothilde holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs & Journalism from Sciences Po Grenoble. 

Joseph Melhem El-Hachem (2018 and 2024 versions) is a member of Lebanon’s Editors Syndicate. He worked as journalist, sub-editor and managing editor for Nass wa Nass supplement, columnist and general supervisor for Nida’ Al-Watan daily from 1992 to 2000, sub-editor for Al-Basir monthly in 1997 and Al-Usbu’iya Iraki magazine (he also co-founded its Lebanese version in 2007). Since 2000, he has been a sub-editor for Al-Mustaqbal daily, where he also manages the Politics section and is in charge of opinion articles. He is the editing coordinator at the SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom since 2009 and works as a freelance writer for Al-Hayat daily. He took part in several conferences and seminars tackling freedom of expression and opinion, and training workshops for Lebanese journalists and bloggers in Lebanon and abroad on how to write news articles and choose the right titles. 

Ayman Mhanna (2018 and 2024 versions) is the Executive Director of the Beirut-based Samir Kassir Foundation – SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom, the leading freedom of expression NGO in the Levant region. He joined SKF in September 2011. In this capacity, Ayman oversees the Foundation’s monitoring, advocacy, research and training activities. From January 2016 to February 2017, he was also the Executive Director of the Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD), a network of 200 media development and journalism assistance organisations. Both at the Samir Kassir Foundation and GFMD, Ayman oversaw the organization of large-scale conferences, workshops and festivals, gathering hundreds of participants. He previously served as Senior Program Officer for the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (2007-2011) working on election observation, electoral reform and civil society involvement in public policy-making. He was also a lecturer on the Master’s programme at Saint Joseph University’s Faculty of Economics, teaching Policy Development and Communications (2011-2016). Ayman holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Saint Joseph University in Beirut and a Master’s degree in International Affairs from Sciences Po Paris.  

Edward Rowell (2018 version) from London, England, came to Beirut in September 2018 having just finished A Levels at Prior Park College in Bath and started working as an intern at the Samir Kassir Foundation, helping out on the project, assisting research and proofreading.

Jad Shahrour (2018 and 2024 versions) is a Lebanese journalist and a civil society activist. He has been working as the SKF communication officer since March 2017.  Focusing on economic and political reform in the country, his work revolves around using the media to advance societal cohesion, tolerance, and defend freedom of expression and digital rights. In 2014, he was part of the founding team of The New Arab, now a leading English-language source of Middle East news, focusing on influential media news (socio-political stories). He worked there as a senior editor and journalist. Throughout his career, Jad campaigned to advance equality and the rule of law, taking part in workshops and local and Arab conferences tackling human rights, raising awareness on the situation for Sudanese refugees and campaigning on gender-based violence, especially in Syria.  

Nada Sleiman (2018 version) is a translator and a researcher for the Beirut-based Samir Kassir Foundation – SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom. She joined SKF in November 2011. Besides translating all reports and press releases for the foundation, she is also contributing to media monitoring projects and support to emerging media. Nada is also involved in organizing the Foundation’s main international conferences. She has been teaching translation and communications at the St-Joseph University in Beirut since 2011. 

Olaf Steenfadt heads the "Media Ownership Monitor" project for Reporters Without Borders. For many years, he has been involved as a consultant and coach for media pluralism, especially in development cooperation. Mandates of international organizations and NGOs lead him primarily to Southeast Europe and in the Arab world. He previously worked for ARD and ZDF in various roles, including as radio and TV presenter, investigative author, domestic and foreign correspondent, as well as in format development and program marketing. Olaf teaches media history, media policy and regulation at universities in Germany and Europe. 

The Samir Kassir Foundation

It's a non-profit, non-governmental organization working to spread the democratic culture in Lebanon and the Arab world, and encourage the promising talents of free and independent press. The Foundation established the Center for Media and Cultural Freedom (SKeyes), which works on monitoring violations of freedom of expression in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Palestine. The Samir Kassir Foundation organizes high-level capacity building courses for journalists to improve their coverage of sensitive issues, with the help of local and international trainers and international institutions concerned with media development. The Foundation also provides financial and legal support, in addition to safety assistance and safe shelters to journalists who face risks, and works to reform legislations and practices that stifle freedom of expression. After the Beirut Port explosion on August 4, 2020, the Foundation launched the largest media support initiative, targeting the Lebanese media and journalists, to provide support in emergency situations, promote the livelihood of journalists and sustainable independent media and strengthen investigative journalism. The Foundation has a team of 23 people working in Beirut, Amman, Jerusalem, Ramallah, Gaza, Paris and Amsterdam.

Global Media Registry (2022)

GMR is a social enterprise that promotes transparency, accountability, and responsibility in the information space. It is registered under German law as a non-profit LLC. It owns and operates the Media Ownership Monitor as a public utility and implements it in partnership with a network of like-minded partner organizations globally. The GMR is a member of the Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD), a consortium member of the Global Media and Internet Concentration Project (GMICP) and a member of the Media Freedom Cohort of the Summit for Democracy.

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