Growing up in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) in the early 1990’s, Nasreen Alissa realized from a young age that she was different. As a young girl who wanted to play soccer and learn karate, activities she was told were for boys only, she was constantly chastised and bullied, which led Nasreen to the warm embrace of books. Not only was it an escape, through reading she found her passion “for standing up for people like me, the overlooked people, the people who can’t find their place in the harsh current of life.”

As Nasreen continued to learn more from her readings about justice and law, she decided to be a lawyer. “I felt it was unfair that I could not do things because of my gender. I had the desire to serve my community and I wanted to pursue a career in law because I believe that law is fundamental to life and liberty. In the law, you don’t shy away from conflict. You confront it. As James Baldwin said, ‘Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.’”

Passionate and committed to make a difference for Saudi women, Nasreen founded and developed Know Your Rights App, a leading and unique mobile application in KSA and the region, aimed at empowering Saudi women and providing free advice on family law matters. She is one of the few female founders and managing partners of a law firm in KSA and at the forefront of legal innovation and societal development in her country.

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