Silatech Names Tarik Yousef as New CEO

Aug 02, 2011, 09:42 ET from Silatech

DOHA, Qatar, August 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --

Founding CEO Rick Little Appointed Chairman of the Board Executive Committee


Silatech announced today that Dr. Tarik Yousef has been named Chief Executive Officer, and assumed the post in July 2011. As Founding Dean of the Dubai School of Government, Dr. Yousef is one of the most respected economists and recognized authorities on issues of youth employment, economic development and education in the Middle East and North Africa. He is a founding member of the Silatech Knowledge Consortium, and has been engaged with Silatech since it was first announced in 2008 at the world gathering of the UN Alliance of Civilizations in Madrid, Spain.  Dr. Yousef will assume the role held by Rick Little since Silatech's founding in 2008.

Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Founder and Chair of the organization, said: "Tarik is exactly the right person to build on what Rick Little has so successfully established.  At this historic time in our region, with millions of young people calling for change and economic opportunity, Tarik understands the importance of this moment and is ready to help us lead Silatech into its next stage of growth.. Her Highness added: "His extensive background and knowledge will further propel Silatech in unleashing the positive potential of young people and connecting them to economic opportunities.  Most importantly, Tarik is a natural fit with the values and mission that have guided Silatech from the beginning - envisioning a world in which every young person is prepared to succeed, engaged in decent work, and actively pursuing their dreams."

Prior to becoming founding Dean of the Dubai School of Government, Dr. Yousef was the Sheikh Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah Professor of Arab Studies at the Centre for Contemporary Arab Studies and Associate Professor of Economics in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Tarik received his PhD in economics from Harvard University, worked as an economist at the Middle East Department of the International Monetary Fund, was Visiting Professor in the MENA Region of the World Bank, and a Senior Advisor for the UN Millennium Project.   He is actively engaged in the Global Agenda Project of the World Economic Forum and provides regular television commentary on issues related to the Middle East.

Rick Little, Chairman of Silatech's Executive Committee and member of the Board of Trustees, stated today, "I am absolutely delighted Tarik is joining our team as Silatech's chief executive.  Having worked together over the past several years, I know he is well suited to help us lead Silatech into its next generation of growth. Tarik is a colleague and friend, and I very much look forward to continuing our work together to change the odds for millions of young people."

"Joining Silatech is a great honor for me, both personally and professionally.  It provides an incredible opportunity for me to do the work I am most passionate about - improving the lives of young people," said Dr. Yousef.  "I have deep respect for what has been created over the past three years in Silatech.  It is grounded in solid evidence of "what works", focused on an urgent need, and built on the inspired vision of its founder Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser.  I am also grateful to continue working closely with Rick Little, who has provided great leadership in creating and building Silatech from an idea into an effort that is truly unique in the region.  I am thrilled to join Silatech and this remarkable team because I am convinced that through its bold vision, strong partnerships, practical goals, and a commitment to getting results, we can make a profound difference in the lives of young people," he said.

Since beginning its program operations in 2009, Silatech and its partners have helped tens of thousands of young people learn critical skills, connect to job opportunities, or create their own small enterprises.  Thousands more have voiced their ideas and opinions through the Silatech Index, which is influencing policies and investments across the region.

Silatech's Board of Trustees

Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Qatar
Founder and Chair of Silatech
Founder and Chair of the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development

Mr. Rick Little, United States
Chairman of the Executive Committee of Silatech
Founder and President of the ImagineNations Group and Founder of the International Youth Foundation

His Excellency Martti Ahtisaari, Finland
Former President of Finland and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, 2008
Co-Chair of the European Council on Foreign Relations

His Excellency Dr. Khaled Bin Mohammed Al-Attiyah, Qatar
Minister of International Cooperation

Her Highness Princess Ameerah Al-Taweel, Saudi Arabia
Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees, Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation

Sir David Bell, United Kingdom
Former Chairman of the Financial Times

Mr. John Chambers, United States
Chairman and Chief Executive of Cisco

Mr. Nabil Kuzbari, Austria
President and CEO of Vimpex Handelsgesellschaft MBH and President and CEO of The Kuzbari Group

Her Excellency Mary Robinson, Republic of Ireland
Former President of the Republic of Ireland and United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Mr. Ratan Tata, India
Chairman of Tata & Sons


About Silatech:

Silatech envisions a world in which every young person is prepared to succeed, engaged in decent work, and actively pursuing their dreams.  Silatech is an innovative social enterprise, established to address the critical and growing need to create jobs and economic opportunities for young people, starting first in the MENA region where the world's highest rate of youth unemployment exists.  The initiative promotes job creation and employment through improving young people's access to skills training and job placement, investing in entrepreneurship by growing micro and small enterprises, influencing policies and mindsets.

It was founded in January 2008 by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser with broad support from other regional and international leaders.

For more information, please visit:

Media Contact:
Tarek Kassar,
Communications Manager, Silatech
Tel:    +974-4499-4827
Mobile: +974-3367-1239

SOURCE Silatech