Founder & President – mcfmi

H.E Dr. May Chidiac

15MayChidiac ret

Minister of State of the Administrative Reform

Born in Beirut (Rmeil), June 20th, 1963.

PhD. Information and Communication Sciences from Paris II Panthéon-Assas University with honorable distinction.

Student of the Saint Famille Française School Gemayze-Fanar (General Sciences).

Decorations

  • Medal of “Dame de l’ordre de Saint Gregoire-le-Grand” awarded by Pope Francis in 2017. She received the medal from the Maronite Patriarch Cardinal Bechara Rai in May 2018, at Bkerke.
  • “Chevalier de l’Ordre de la Légion d’Honneur”, decorated by the former President of the French Republic, Jacques Chirac in May 2007 at Elysée Palace.

Career

  • Former Minister of State of State of the Administrative Reform of the government of Saad Hariri since January 31, 2019.
  • Professor of Journalism and Radio/Television at the Notre Dame University-Louaize (NDU) since 1997.
  • Founder and President of the two NGOs; May Chidiac Foundation (MCF) and its affiliated Media Institute (MCF-MI) since 2011. The Foundation organizes two annual conferences
  • Head of the Ground 0 Beirut Relief Committee GROUND-0, Beirut Relief
    Committee created after Beirut Port explosion on August 4, 2020.

Free Connected Minds (FCM)

Women On The Front Lines (WOFL) Lebanon &WOFL MENA Chapter, Jordan

The MCF Media Awards Ceremony awards journalists from around the world every year in Beirut. There are five categories under which a media professional is awarded.

  • Founder of the Academy of Leadership & Applied Communication (ALAC), certified by the Lebanese government by the decree N° 2844/2016.
  • Head of the Press Division at the Lebanese Embassy in Bern-Switzerland between 1989 and 1990.
  • Real estate Promoter between 1994 and 1998.

Journalistic Career

  • Producer and presenter of the prime time political talk show “Bi Kol Joraa” (With Audacity), in the “LBCI”, 2006 – 2009.
  • Host of the political Talk show “Nharkom Saiid”,1998 -2005
  • Editor, reporter and News Anchor at LBC, 1985-2005.
  • Journalist on the radio “Free Lebanon”, 1991 -1993.
  • Journalist on the radio “Voice of Lebanon”, 1982 – 1985.

Assassination Attempt in 2005

Throughout her journalistic career, Dr. May Chidiac stood up for the freedom of the Lebanese people when few dared to speak against the state of tyranny. She was frequently threatened with death threats.

  • Six months after the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in 2005, Chidiac was attacked by a car bomb causing her to lose her left leg and left arm.
  • After ten months of numerous surgeries, treatment, and rehabilitation programs, she returned to the TV screen in a prime time political talk show called “Bi Kol Joraa” “With Audacity”.

Publications

  • “Le Ciel M’attendra” (Heaven Can Wait) in 2007 awarded the “Prix Vérité” in Le Cannet, France.
  • “La Television Mise à Nu” (Influence of politics on the television scene) in 2014. The book was awarded the “Phoenix Prize” for literature.

Prizes

  • 2006: With the support of US President Bill Clinton, she was designated as an outstanding media personality by the United States Secretary of State Ms. Condoleezza Rice.
  • 2006: “UNESCO Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Award
  • 2017: “Minerva Anna Maria Mammoliti of Human Rights and Civil Rights Award” of the Presidency of the Italian Republic, presented in Rome
  • 2006: Courage in Journalism Award presented by the International Woman Media Foundation (IWMF).
  • 2010:”World Press Freedom Hero“. Awarded by the International Press Institute, (IPI) in Vienna.
  • 2016/2018/2020: Vice President and Jury Member of UNESCO for the award of Emir Jaber Al-Ahmad Al Sabah for Empowering People with Disabilities through Digital Technologies in Paris
  • 2017: Member of the Jury of the “Heart of the Words” contest in Monaco under the patronage of His Royal Highness, Prince Albert of Monaco
  •   2017: Her excellency became a “Dame de l’Ordre de Saint Grégoire-le-
    Grand” at the Vatican
  • 2017: Award of “Minerva Anna Maria
    Mammoliti Prize for Human and Civil Rights” in Rome,
  • 2010: Member of the “High Panel for Peace and Dialogue of Cultures” UNESCO (New Avenues for Peace)
  • 2007: Clarins Award – Woman of the Year, awarded by the CLARINS Foundation
  • 2007: Honored as part of “She Made It” by the Museum of Television and Radio, (Paley Center) New York, USA
  • 2006: “CRANS Montana” Foundation Prize for Freedom of Expression awarded by His Royal Highness, Prince Albert of Monaco, Monte Carlo
  • 2005: The Freedom of Expression Prize of the International Union of Francophone Press (UPF).
  • 2004: “Journalist of the Year” Award – U.K International College

In the Arab World

  • 2008: Honorary Award presented by the Crown Prince His Royal Highness, Sabah al Ahmad al Sabah, Kuwait
  • 2006: “Freedom of Expression Award” presented by His Royal Highness Prince Mohammad Ben Rached Ben Maktoum, Dubai
  • 2006: Honorary Award presented by His Royal Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi
  • 2006: “Annual Journalism Award” presented by the Ministry of Information in Cairo, Egypt.
  • 2015: Medal of Honor, awarded by the Minister of Information in Lebanon

Participatory Forums

  • Board Member: Women without Borders (2016).
  • Speaker/USJ-Agora Club: participated as a speaker in a discussion about Freedom of expression in the time of censorship judicial prosecution at Saint Joseph University-Beirut (2018).
  • Speaker/TAKREEM Foundation: Assisted in a discussion panel titled “Successful women share their best career advice” organized by TAKREEM Foundation in Amman Jordan (2017).
  • Jury Member/ L’Association des Femmes Leaders Mondiales de Monaco: Participated as a jury member in “Concours Numérique Francophone Aux cœurs des mots” organized by L’Association des Femmes Leaders Mondiales de Monaco-Monaco (2017).
  • Speaker/ MED (Mediterranean Dialogues) 3rd Edition: Participated in the “Rome MED Women’s Forum” as a speaker in the second panel titled “Building new networks: the role of women in peace and security (WPS)”-Rome (2017).
  • Presentation at the ESCWA (Beirut): Spoke about women’s work in the public sector and in the political life. This conference was held by Smart Center in collaboration with the United Nations Information Center-Beirut (2017).
  • Moderator: International Conference on Youth and Information and Communication Technologies, Preventing Violent Extremism Cyberspace UNESCO Palace – Beirut. (2017).
  • Presentation at the Rosario University: Presentation on freedom of speech (2016).
  • The 30th anniversary of the assassination of Famed Colombian Journalist Guillermo Cano 2016: Honorary speaker as one of the Guillermo Cano Awardees in Paris (2006).
  • UNESCO/Emir Jaber alAhmad al-Jaber al-Sabah Prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities: Participated as the vice-president in this competition’s international jury (Paris 2016).
  • 1325 UN Resolution-Vienna Symposium at the request of the Austrian Parliament: Fourth World Conference on Women: The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action: “Enhancing Women’s Share in Peace and Security” Agenda and Priorities – Middle Eastern Report (2015).
  • Sidney University Honorary Guest at the University of Sidney Ideas Talk and Lecturer on “The Role of Women in Media during National Conflict” (2014).
  • International Press Institute Congress in South Africa Speaker in the “A Mounting Toll: Promoting the Safety of Journalists” talk (2014).
  • UNESCO International Colloquium in Beirut under the Patronage of the President of the Lebanese Republic “Dialogue des Cultures, Culture du dialogue au Moyen-Orient” (2013).
  • UNESCO Global Forum on Media and Gender in Thailand, titled “Documenting Change/Empowering Media – Gender Mainstreaming in the Media Middle East Report (2013).
  • Women’s Forum Deauville-France: Guest speaker (2007 and 2014).
  • International Press Institute Congress in Jordan: World Congress Speaker at the Status of Women Journalists in The Media Panel (2013).
  • The MENA Regional Forum for Media Development (November 2008).
  • UNESCO Symposium for Freedom of Expression (October 2008).
  • Doha Debates on Democracy (September 2008).
  • Women’s Forum at Deauville- France – Keynote speaker on the “Price of freedom of Expression” (October 2007).

Honorary Title

In June 2016, she was awarded with an Honorary Doctorate from the American University of Science and Technology.

Cultural NGO:

Member of ADG (Gemmayze Development Association) since 2003

Foundations & Institutes and Academies:

Founder and President of the two NGOs; May Chidiac Foundation (MCF) and its affiliated Media Institute (MCF-MI) since 2011: On the fourth anniversary of the attempted assassination of May Chidiac in 2009, the two non-profit organizations, the May Chidiac Foundation (MCF) and its affiliated Media Institute, were launched. Since MCF-MI is dedicated to training, research, and education on issues of media, democracy, and social welfare, numerous projects and workshops were executed throughout the past years including:

  • GBV in Collaboration with the UNESCO:
  • PR & Political Communication.
  • Communication & Public Speaking.
  • Arts & Science of Public Speaking.
  • TV presenting.
  • Arabic Diction.
  • Formation a la rédaction des titres d’information.

MCF-MI also executed a project in collaboration with the Embassy of Netherlands in Beirut, titled “Today’s Youth for Tomorrow’s Leaders”.

In addition, the Media Institute hosts activities, training, workshops, and seminars in fulfillment of the organization’s goals. The Media Institute aims to bridge the gap between academia and media industry, providing students and professionals with state-of-the-art technical facilities and training programs in order to improve their competencies and competitiveness. Partnerships were made with UNESCO and the US Embassy in Lebanon. In association with institutes of higher learning, the Media Institute offers support to students and professionals for training in the region in order for them to experience hands‐on learning in media, peace‐building, conflict resolutions, and human rights.

By creating a free, enriching and fulfilling environment, the May Chidiac Foundation ‐ Media Institute aims to empower young professionals to advocate for freedom of expression, professionalism, and human rights. MCF‐MI is dedicated to foster unlimited excellence in its various fields.

The May Chidiac Foundation believes that by supporting the development of knowledge production industries, it can greatly contribute to making Lebanon a proactive player in the Middle East and the global economy. This will lay the groundwork necessary to foster freedom of expression, human rights, democracy, peace building, and good governance.

The Foundation organizes two annual conferences

  • Free Connected Minds (FCM)
  • Women on the Front Lines (WOFL) Lebanon &WOFL MENA Chapter, Jordan

WOFL became a platform for women to share their outstanding stories benefitting the wide and divers audience.

The MCF Media Awards Ceremony the MCF Annual Media Awards Ceremony is a tribute to media professionals, who have significantly influenced the media scene locally, regionally, and internationally.

  • Founder of the Academy of Leadership & Applied Communication (ALAC), certified by the Lebanese government by the decree N° 2844/2016.
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