Our officers are some of the most impressive women of the community; doctors, engineers, mothers, and humanitarians who are glad to help women taking refuge in the United States. They are strong women fighting for their sisters, ensuring all women are given a voice.
Board of Directors
Samira Harnish is the President and Founder of The Women of the World. She arrived in America from her native Iraq as a teen in an arranged marriage. She struggled against bigotry and poverty to get her degree in Civil Engineering and after settling in Boise getting a job as a semiconductor manufacturing engineer. As a research and development engineer, Samira was integral to the development some of the most advanced memory products ever assembled. When she retired, Samira was in charge of storage node development at the largest domestic manufacturer of semiconductor memory.
Samira has always served her community. She has been responsible for educating young women in the sciences as a member of Women in Engineering, assisting the elderly in Meals on Wheels, and interpreting in Arabic in the courts and healthcare sectors. In Utah, she served as an officer in the Iraqi Community of Utah and as a case worker in the Utah Health and Human Rights Department. In 2010, Samira founded Women of the World to fulfill a lifelong dream of assisting women refugees who had suffered mental and physical trauma in war and camps achieve self-sufficiency in her adopted country of America. Women of the World is Samira’s heart on her sleeve, a 24/7 small business with the mission of supporting women of all nations achieve their dreams. Samira has received numerous awards for her service work including a 2012 nomination as a SHERO by SHEROES United and KUED7.
She is the proud mother of five, nana for her two beautiful granddaughters, and the wife of advisory board member Justin Harnish.
Nazanin Nourmohammadi is a Director and a refugee from Iran. Nazanin escaped religious persecution as a practicing Christian during the Cultural Revolution in Iran where she was jailed. She was an entertainer in Iran but when she fled to America she decided to give something back to the country that gave her refuge and after numerous years of volunteering, became a sought after caseworker for refugees at the Utah Department of Workforce Services where she has twice been awarded the Governor’s Humanity Prize for her tireless support of women’s and refugee rights.
Alaa Ameen is a Director for Women of the World. Alaa is a refugee from Iraq who has been in Utah since 2010 and used her linguistic skills to continue to help people in her role as a Medical Interpreter at the Utah Health and Human Rights Project. Alaa is fluent in English, Arabic, and French and is conversational in numerous other languages. Before fleeing Iraq, she was a Team Leader for the Embassy of The People’s Republic Of China in Baghdad, where she translated official documents, arranged Visa applications, and interpreted for delegates in diplomatic meetings.
Ruth Arevalo is a native of Salt Lake City whose culinary career and service of women’s issues has taken her to numerous countries in central and South America. Ruth is Women of the World’s Employment Coordinator, her understanding of the business community in Salt Lake City as well as the development of catering business ventures are a valuable resource in this role. Ruth has numerous ties to the service community, donating her time to other Spanish and Portuguese speakers as an ESL teacher at the ESL Center, developing the marketing for Global Artisans, and assisting with the Salt Lake Community Garden. Ruth is inspired by Founder and President Samira Harnish’s tireless commitment to refugees in Utah and is driven to better their status through developing their own sense of self and supporting their employment and business goals.
Board of Advisors
Justin Harnish is the Development Director for the Women of the World. He is in charge of the development of both the internet and intranet site for Women of the World. Justin is a semiconductor engineering manager by day but enjoys his service work with Women of the World since it allows him to spend time with the love of his life, founder and president Samira Harnish.