Bio: Mais Irqsusi
Mais Irqsusi is a leader, organizer, and educator. She is the Executive Director of the Leading Change Network, and is the founder and executive director of Community Organizing Europe, where she works with organizing and leadership development at a number of European based unions and civil society organizations. She serves on the boards of the three organizations whose initiation and growth she has meticulously supported over the years: Ahel, Raneen, and the Arab Education Forum.
Mais has been an active contributor to LCN since its inception in 2013. She was a part of the leadership development team for both the Boston conference in 2013 and Serbia conference in 2015. In Serbia Conference her objective was to bring broader understanding of how to coach campaigns and movements organize, build leadership and win. For the past year, she has been a member of the LCN Europe leadership team, focusing on linking learning, organising and leadership development to European countries, causes and institutions, at this time when democracy itself is at risk across this region.
Mais is passionate about leadership development and is determined to support changemakers to organize and lead campaigns that change unjust systems and strive for human rights and freedom. As a practitioner and champion of the community organizing framework, she has worked thoroughly on its localization in the Middle East and Europe and coached over 15 campaigns in different contexts to organize for change. She has also designed and ran over 100 workshops on narrative, organizing and leadership in various contexts.
In 2011, Mais co-founded Ahel organization in Jordan, bringing organizing to the Arab world. During the six years she was co- leading Ahel, she succeeded in cementing both the practice of organizing and Ahel as a leading institute for civic change within the Arab world. In 2019 and 2020, Mais established and led Ahel’s leadership and organizing course, a 16 week Arabic speaking online course. This was the first of its kind and has currently reached over 100 students from 14 Arab countries.
In the four years prior to her work with Ahel, Mais led the programs of the Arab Education Forum developing and leading projects on youth empowerment, community education, and cultural regeneration across the region. In 2010 co-founded the organisation Raneen, an audio library initiative for children.
Mais has a BA in management information systems and a Masters in Business Administration MBA from (NYIT). She is a certified PMP project manager and has an Executive Education from Harvard University in Leadership, Organizing and Action (LOA).
She is originally from Jordan, is married to a Palestinian, and currently lives in Sweden. In her spare time, she loves to battle the waves of a raging ocean. She has a three year old daughter Ebba, who is the other spark in her life.