Inside the Gate
  Views from Campus
Pioneering Healthcare Worldwide
2,230 Ships, 127,656 containers, 1 Transport Research Unit
Beyond These Gates
Cross-Pollination: Spreading the Seed of Advocacy
In Our History
Alumni Profile
Maingate Connections
Alumni Happenings
Class Notes
AUB Reflections
In Memoriam
From the Editors
Letters to the Editors
Campaign Update
AUB Board of Trustees Announces New Leadership of its International Advisory Council
On its 140th Anniversary, AUB Celebrates Democracy, Hope and Achievement
Archaeologist Nina Jidejian Launches Book on Sidon
Reviews: NGOs and Governance in the Arab World

Winter 2007 Vol. V, No. 2

Class Notes


Abdullatif Succar
(BA ’47) retired in 1980 after a 27-year career with the United Nations System of Organizations. From August 1948 until April 1956, Succar worked at the Security Council Department of the United Nations Secretariat in New York. He resigned to return to Syria upon the death of his father, but later rejoined the United Nations Operation in Congo (Kinshasa). He was subsequently assigned as a residential representative (ResRep) in Somalia, the People’s Republic of South Yemen, and Saudi Arabia and was regional representative for Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Area (covering Bahrain, Qatar, UAE, and Oman) from 1971 until 1978. Succar ended his career as a ResRep in Jordan in 1980. He now lives in Brumana, Lebanon and can be reached via e-mail at alsuccar[at] or by phone at (961) 01 797930, 03 919120. All friends are welcome to call or visit.


Hagop S. Pambookian
(BA ’57) writes “I have given several talks to area communities about the attack on Lebanon before and after the war. There is so much misinformation out there. Besides talks to the Rotary and Kiwanis Clubs, and a letter to the editor, I have also had newspaper and radio interviews. I was glad to be able to help!” Pambookian is a professor emeritus of psychology at Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, OH.


Albert Dadis
(BA ’63) continues to travel between Germany, Cyprus, and Beirut. He especially enjoys being in Beirut where he sees many of his former classmates; he also stays in touch with friends and classmates around the world. They exchange news and keep themselves up-to-date with latest developments. He would like to hear from old friends, who can reach him at afdadis[at]

Gunvor Rottensten
(BA ’67) writes that after graduating from AUB, she went back to Denmark for three years to pursue further studies. She then worked for thirty years as a translator in the European Parliament, Luxembourg, where she still lives. She is now retired and can be contacted at gunvor[at]


Mohammad Khattab
(MA, Ed. ’74) worked as a teacher training specialist with UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) in Beirut and Amman for more than 20 years. In 1984, he received his PhD in educational psychology from the University of London Institute of Education. He has worked as an

assistant professor at several universities, and has been the director of training and development in Saad National Schools, Saad Group, Al-Khobar, in Saudi Arabia since 1996. Khattab helped to organize in-service teacher training programs in many countries in the MENA region in cooperation with Ministries of Education, UNICEF, UNESCO and UNRWA. He can be contacted atsmakhattab[at]

Hassan El-Saghir
(BS ’76) writes to thank the University and his teachers at FAFS (Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences) for a beautiful and well-organized reunion in 2006. El-Saghir noted that a highlight of the event was the tour of the AUB Museum, which has been extensively renovated and is much improved since he first visited as an IC student in 1962. Since 2002, he has spent his summers visiting family and friends in Beirut. He has been living in Canada since 1984, but still contemplates returning to Lebanon. He can be contacted athelsaghir8[at]

Rima Kassantini Zantout
(BA ’78) writes that after working in the Development Office at AUB, she joined the banking sector and works at First National Bank in Beirut. She is a certified anti-money laundering specialist and a consultant and speaker for the Association of Certified Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS). She is also a Rotarian. She can be reached at rzantout[at]


Fadi K. Haikal
(BBA ’81, MBA ’87) has been working in Nigeria for the past seven months as a general manager in the snacks/confectionary business of the Zard Group of companies. He can be reached by phone at 00 234 8055750510 and 00 234 27505008 or by e-mail atfadihaikal[at]

Abdur Razzak Muhammad-Bashir Abyad
(BS ’82, MD ’86, MS ’88) is the editor of Middle East Journal of Age & Aging and of Middle East Journal of Business; the chairman of Middle East Academy for Medicine of Aging; the coordinator of Middle East Primary Care Research Network; the coordinator of Middle East Network on Aging Research; and the president of Middle East Association on Aging and Alzheimer’s. You can contact him by e-mail at aabyad[at]


Hassan Masri
(BS, TD ’91) writes that he worked as a teacher for a while until he got his current job as a weatherman at Directorate General Civil Aviation at Rafic Hariri International Airport in Beirut. During the first few days of the July war, he stayed at home with his wife Lina and their one-year-old daughter Hala. When his house sustained damage during one of the air strikes, he had to move in with his parents. He later discovered that his house had been completely destroyed. Hassan says that he is grateful to be alive and hopes for a more peaceful future for Lebanon. He can be contacted at aubite1991[at]

Diala Fayssal Arslan
(BA ’93) reports that she was a technical manager of the “Blindness Prevention Program” funded by “IMPACT Middle East” which screened 10,000 students from Aley´s 44 public schools and distributed 575 free pairs of eyeglasses to students with poor eyesight. She is a member of the “Committee for Women Political Empowerment” that promotes women´s political status in Lebanon. She is also the author of six children´s stories, written in Arabic, which promote democracy, good governance, and the preservation of the environment. Diala is married to Ghassan Talhouk and is the mother of Adel (born 2000) and Omar (born 2005). Her email isghassant[at]

Walid Aboujaoude
(MD ’94) writes that he is board certified in the United States in internal medicine and nephrology, and did his specialty in transplantation nephrology at Indiana University. In January 2006 he opened a new state-of- the-art dialysis center at the Middle East Institute of Health in Bsalim, Lebanon, a 200-bed tertiary care center in the Beirut suburbs. He can be reached atabouj[at]

Abd Al Rahman Itani
attended AUB for two years as a graduate student in chemistry (1995-97) and again in 2001-03. He completed his studies in chemistry at the Beirut Arab University, where he earned his degree in June 2005. He then moved to Saudi Arabia where he is the plant manager of the Bomanite Corporation’s Middle East Division in Jeddah. The company produces architectural concrete and operates under a license from Bomanite USA. Itani was recently awarded a scholarship from King Abdul Aziz University to study for his master’s degree and hopes to be able to earn a PhD as well. He sends his greetings to all his friends at AUB. He can be reached on his mobile phone at 00966502200279 and by e-mail atalrahmanitani[at]

Lara Salman
(BS ‘97, TD ’01), a professional artist, recently launched a new brand of textiles called “Tantana,” and a new line of poufs and furniture.

Amira Choucair
(BS ’99) received her PhD in physical chemistry from McGill University in 2004. She then joined the National Research Council of Canada as a research scientist working in the area of biophysical chemistry. She recently moved to Rhode Island and can be reached at mirachoucair[at]


Kamal Abi Salloum
(BE ’04) is currently an oil and gas business analyst for Total, a French oil and gas company. Kamal splits his time between Dubai and Paris and can be reached at kamal[at]

Rami Houssari
(BBA ’04) now lives in Houston, where he has been the finance manager of a car dealership for the past two years. He can be reached at ramii64[at]

Mouhammad Salah Eddine Itani
(BBA ’04) writes that he is the head of the accounting department and the marketing manager consultant at Salah Eddine Itani Motorcycle Stores (YAMAHA) – a family business. He recently got engaged to Rayyan Mekdashi. He may be contacted atmsi92[at]

Mariana Dakessian
(BBA ’05) thanks MainGate for keeping readers informed and updated on AUB and its alumni. Since graduating in June 2005, she has had several different jobs, and now works as a member of Kuwait’s Permanent Mission at the United Nations in Geneva. Mariana can be reached at 004179 7875868 or by e-mail atmariana_d13[at]

Mariam Zantout
(BA, TD ’05) graduated with double majors in nutrition and science education for secondary levels. While at AUB, she trained as a ninth grade biology teacher at the American Community School (ACS). After graduation she worked at Al-Baba Al Moumtaza Sweets in Saida as a hazard analysis and critical control points coordinator (HACCP). She moved from there to Hammoud Hospital, where she worked as a dietician for Sodexho Company. She currently works in the Nutrition Department at Raee Hospital in Saida and part-time at their clinic. She can be contacted atmaz16[at]

Zahra Hankir
(BA ’06) is in the UK at the University of Manchester, where she is pursuing her master’s degree in Middle Eastern studies. She hopes to study for a PhD at another UK institution and has just finished writing her PhD proposal. She was recently hired as an editorial assistant to work on a book on Islamic law that will be published by Oxford University Press in 2007. Her email is zahraleb[at]

Amer Koraytem
(MBA ’06) is pleased to hear news about AUB. He recently got married and moved to Kuwait. His wife, Hiba Itani, is also an AUB graduate (BA Economics ’02, MA Financial Economics ’05). They both work at the National Bank of Kuwait (NBK ) in Kuwait where Amer is product manager in the Consumer Loans and Marketing Department and his wife is an assistant economic researcher. They have just received the good news that they are expecting a baby!

Joelle M. Abi Rached
(MD ’06) has been awarded the highly competitive PJD Wiles Scholarship by the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Only ten scholarships are awarded to candidates from 22 countries in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia. Abi Rached is pursuing a master’s degree in philosophy and public policy and can be reached at oelleabirached[at]

Recently honored alumni:

Riad Salameh (BA ’56)
On Tuesday, September 19, 2006 Banque du Liban Governor Riad Salameh was named Best Central Bank Governor in the World (2006) by Euromoney magazine. This is the first time Euromoney has awarded this title to an Arab official. At a reception held in Singapore at the Raffles Plaza Hotel during the 2006 IMF/World Bank meetings, Chairman of Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC, Padraic Fallon presented the award to Salameh. Fallon said that Salameh now faces yet another challenge in his 13-year tenure as Lebanon’s Central Bank governor after the Israeli war on Lebanon, but added that Salameh had dealt with previous challenges with flying colors and would likely do so again.

Bernard Ghanem (BE ’05) Rami Abdallah (BE ’06)
Each year, FEA presents the Charli Korban Award, which was established by the family of an ECE (Electrical and Computer Engineering) graduate who died prematurely, to an outstanding graduating ECE undergraduate and graduate student. In 2005, the recipient of the undergraduate Korban Award was Bernard Ghanem. Ghanem, who is now a graduate student at the University of Illinois, also won the Henderson Award in ECE at Illinois in 2006. The 2006 recipient of the undergraduate Korban Award at AUB was Rami Abdallah, also a graduate student at Illinois. The person responsible for administrating the Korban Award is the late Charli Korban’s brother, Safi Korban, who is a professor of genetics in agriculture at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign.

Fouad Kronfol (BS ’57, MS ’70)
was awarded a medal “For the Cause of Population, Family and Children” by the government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. The award honors his “outstanding contribution to the care and protection of Vietnamese children” during the period 1980-83 when he was the UNICEF Representative in Hanoi, Vietnam. Fouad can be reached at 120 Ferland, 10-D, Ile Des Soeurs, Verdun, Quebec H3E1L1, Canada.