Eight agents of change

Updated 6:41 PM ET, Thu February 2, 2012
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As the "Arab Spring" movement has spread over the Middle East, women are seeing the promise of change and the ability to take part and affect that change. Here we feature eight women who will likely continue to influence those changes. Manal al Sharif spearheaded the "#Women2Drive" movement in Saudi Arabia -- openly defying the country's ban on women driving. courtesy Abduljalil Alnasser
Dalia Ziada, Egypt Director of the American Islamic Congress, founded the first partisan womens' organizatin in Egypt, is an award-winning blogger and says women's biggest challenge is "how they see themselves." courtesy dalia ziada
Maria Al-Masani, a public relations specialist based in Canada, founded the "Yemen Rights Monitor." "My goal is to save lives by making it easier for the media to shine light on human rights abuses in Yemen." Courtesy Carole Lecompte
Yasmine El-Mehairy founded "Super Mama," an online parenting community for Arab mothers in the Middle East. courtesy yasmine el-mehairy
Lamees Dhaif is a journalist from Bahrain who left the country after her vocal support of the Arab Spring protests resulted in death threats against her and her family. Courtesy Lamees Dhaif
Shahinaz Ahmed is the CEO of the Education For Employment Foundation. "One of the greatest challenges facing women in the region is freedom of choice," she says. courtesy Shahinaz Ahmed
Ouri Fida is the deputy director and webmaster of the first women's radio station in the Middle East. "We want to inspire women," she says, "as mothers, as wives, as workers, as people." courtesy fida ouri
Danya Bashir is a 20-year-old business owner and two-time winner (and the only woman to win) of the UAE Young Entrepreneurship competition. courtesy danya bashir hobba