As a testament to her devotion to positive social change, Dina Sherif, associate director of the John D. Gerhart Center for Philanthropy and Civic Engagement, was selected as one of 2011 Trust Across America’s Top Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior in Europe and the Middle East. Trust Across America, an organization committed to responsible business behavior, and the Centre for Sustainability and Excellence, a global advisory organization providing sustainability solutions, selected 100 people who stand out for their leadership in transforming and reversing the cycle of mistrust in business.
“Philanthropy is important because it represents our human side, our instinct to connect and do for others, to give back,” said Sherif. “Philanthropic wealth is key to resolving many of the problems in our part of the world.” Devoting her career to sustainability management, Sherif notes that one of the most important aspects of her work is staying ahead of the curve. “You need to be pushing people to think outside the box and consider new and innovative ways of seeing reality,” she said. According to Barbara Ibrahim, director of the Gerhart Center, Sherif is well-deserving of the recognition. “Dina and I have worked together since 2006 to build the Gerhart Center’s regional programs,” said Ibrahim. “She has a sharp eye for new ideas, and in the case of sustainable management in Arab companies, she has the ability to bring smart people together to make things happen on the ground.” After graduating from AUC with a bachelor’s degree in political science and international relations and a master’s in professional development studies, Sherif involved herself in a wide range of philanthropic and development projects. Throughout her career, she has worked with organizations such as Environmental Quality International and served as a board member of several civil society organizations including Tawasol, Alashanek Ya Balady and Soliya. Sherif is a contributing author in the regional study, From Charity to Change: Trends in Arab Philanthropy (2008). She is currently pursuing a PhD in philanthropic studies, with a specialization in responsible business, from Indiana University–Purdue University, Indianapolis.