Michel Chiha Foundation

Chiha Foundation

Executive Committee

Claude Doumet Serhal


MBE, FSA. Director since 1998 of the British Museum/Directorate of Antiquities of Lebanon excavations in Sidon. Special Assistant at the British Museum. Honorary Senior Research Associate University College London. UMR 8167 Orient et Méditerranée, “Mondes sémitiques” CNRS. Founder of the Lebanese British Friends of the National Museum. Editor of the journal Archaeology and History in Lebanon.

Michel El Khoury


Former governor of the Central Bank of Lebanon. Former minister. Former president of the National Council of Tourism. Worked as a journalist with the French language daily ‘Le Jour” owned by Michel Chiha. Appointed personal representative of the President of the Republic (1977). Participated in a number of official Lebanese Missions to foreign capitals as Attaché to the Political Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Published several articles and studies and delivered a number of conferences in the “Cénacle Libanais” and many other institutions. Co-Founder of the Banque Libano-Française of which he has been Vice-Chairman for many years.

Joe Issa El Khoury


Has established his own law office in 1975 and since then has been a Member of the board of directors of Finance Bank and Crédit Libanais Investment Bank. From 1981 to 1985 he taught Public Law at Université St Joseph. From 2002 to 2007 he was a Member of the board of directors of Near East Commercial Bank. From 1997 to 2006 he was a Member of the Committee of the Lebanese Center of Arbitration. From 1994 to 1998 he was a Member of the Committee for the modernisation of laws established by the Central Bank of Lebanon.

Madeleine Chiha Helou


Daughter of Michel Chiha and Marguerite Pharaon. Madeleine Helou is the wife of the late MP Pierre Helou. She has been very active in non-governmental organisations such as the Société de Bienfaisance Latine, the Comite central des Dames de la Charité, the Lebanese Red Cross, and Saint Vincent de Paul. Madeleine Helou was a member of the executive committee of the Baalbek International Festival for over 40 years. She is now Vice-President of the Lebanese Academy of Gastronomy.

Michèle Helou Nahas


B.A. Interpreter School of the University of Geneva. B.A. Art History Concordia University, Montreal. Michèle has been a guide at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts since 1988. And in the past few years, she has been a guide at the AUB Archeological Museum and the National Museum in Lebanon. Michèle is also active in several non-governmental organisations in particular helping children with special needs.

Isabelle Doumet Skaf


Archaeological conservator specialising in the conservation of archaeological materials and surfaces. The former head of conservation at the Directorate General of Antiquities. Worked on several conservation projects for museums and archaeological excavations in Lebanon.

Nabil De Freige


Board member of the Lebanese Agricultural research institute (1989-2000). Co-Founder and board member of Liban-Lait s.a.l. (Candia). President of the association of protection and improvement of the Arabian horse in Lebanon (since February 1998). Elected MP on Rafic Hariri’s list (representing Christian minorities) (September 2000). Member of the Budget and Finance parliamentary committee during the period 2000-2014. Member of the Agriculture and Tourism parliamentary committee (2000-2005). Member of the Francophone parliamentary committee since 2000. Member of the Francophone international parliamentary assembly committee office since 2003. Elected MP for Beirut for the second time in May 2005 on the list of former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri. President of the Economy, Trade, Industry, and Planning parliamentary committee (2005-2014). Elected Member of Parliament for Beirut for the third time in June 2009 on the list of the Future movement list. Minister of State for Administrative Reform since February 2014.


Ahmad Beydoun


Professor of Sociology at the Lebanese University. He retired in 2007. His numerous publications include studies dealing with various aspects of Lebanese history, the Lebanese political and social system, and the Arab culture.

Fares El Dahdah


Farès Dahdah received his undergraduate degrees in both fine arts and architecture from the Rhode Island School of Design and went on to pursue his graduate studies in urbanism and architectural theory at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design. Following a two decade long professorial track at Rice University’s School of Architecture, he was appointed director of the Humanities Research Center in 2012, Professor of the Humanities in 2014, and Professor of Art History in 2021, prior to becoming the Mamdouha El-Sayed Bobst Dean of Arts and Sciences at the American University of Beirut. In recent years, data scholarship, digital art history, and cloud adoption increasingly became central to his research interests and so has the creation of online geospatial platforms in the areas of cultural heritage, public health, social justice, disaster response, and climate change.

S.E.M. Marwan Hamadé


H.E. started his career as a journalist and columnist, Deputy Editor in Chief of “L’Orient-Le Jour” (1971-1975), Director of the Press Group “An-Nahar” (1977-1980). He was elected Deputy of Mount Lebanon in 1991. He held a number of portfolios: Minister of Tourism (1980-1982) Minister of Health and Social Affairs three times (1992-1997), Minister of the Displaced (2000-2003) Minister of Economy and Trade (1990-1992) and (2003-2004), Minister of Telecommunications (2005-2008). He is Secretary General of the Parliament’s bureau and Chairman of the Environment Parliamentary Commission since 2009. Mr. Hamadé is also President of the Board of the “Société Immobilière de Presse” (SIP), Consultant for the World Organisation of Health for the Middle East (since 1996), Founding member of the “Druze Council for Development” (since 1977), he also figures on the Board of the “Crédit Libanais” s.a.l., the Higher Council of the Lebanese Press, the Strategic Council of the Saint Joseph University (U.S.J.)”, the boards of “An-Nahar” and “l’Orient-Le Jour”

Alexandra Helou Farah


Laura Helou Tarazi


Michel Helou


Pierre Helou


Youmna Helou Ghorra


Antoine Khair


Former Honorary President of the Court of Cassation. Former President of the Higher Council of the Judiciary. Former member of the Constitutional Council. Emeritus Professor at the Faculty of Law and Political Science at Saint Joseph University.



Samir Khalaf


Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for Behavioural Research at the American University of Beirut. He has also held academic appointments at Princeton, Harvard, MIT, and New York University. He is the author of numerous journal articles and book chapters on comparative modernisation, socio-cultural history, urbanisation, and post-war reconstruction. He has been a recipient of several international fellowships and research awards and appointed on the international jury to review master plans for the post-war reconstruction of Beirut. He is a trustee of several foundations and serves on the editorial boards of a score of international journals and publications.

Joseph Maïla


Former President of the Catholic University of Paris, former Head of the Policy planning at the Ministry of Foreign affairs in Paris, Joseph Maïla is currently Professor of International relations and Geopolitics at ESSEC, Paris, France.

Tarek Mitri


Tarek Mitri is the President of St George University of Beirut. He was director of the Fares Institute on Public Policy and International Affairs at the American University of Beirut. He served as the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General and was, prior to that, member of four successive Lebanese governments as Minister of Environment, Administrative Reform, Culture, Information and acting Minister of Foreign Affairs. Previously, he worked in the World Council of Churches in Geneva as a coordinator of Christian-Muslim relations, intercultural and inter-religious dialogue. He taught at the Université Saint Joseph, Balamand University, the University of Geneva, Amsterdam Free University, Harvard University and the American University of Beirut. He chairs the Boards of Nicolas Sursock Museum and the Institute of Palestine Studies. He is a member of the Strategic Council of Saint Joseph University and of the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies. Tarek Mitri authored a number of books and articles on contemporary Arab issues, religion and politics, inter-religious and intercultural dialogue

Nathalie Serhal Badaro


Nadim Shehadi


Associate Fellow of the Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House where he directs a program on the regional dimension of the Palestinian refugee issue in the Middle East Peace Process. He is also a senior member of St Antony’s College Oxford where he was director of the Centre for Lebanese Studies from 1986 to 2005. He is a member of the executive board of the Centro de Estudios de Oriente Medio of the Fundacion Promocion Social de la Cultura in Madrid. In 2010 he was a visiting fellow at the Aspen Institute in Washington DC and in the summer semester of 2012, he was a visiting scholar at Tufts University. He is also a consultant to several governments and international organisations. He has several publications and contributes regularly to the media on Middle Eastern affairs.

Emilie Skaff


Hélène Skaff