- Age: 27
- | She/her/hers
Country of Origin:
Country of Residence:
It is not enough for young women like myself to simply exist in traditionally exclusive spaces. We must be able to meaningfully contribute to decision-making processes and dare to envision a world where our occupation of leadership positions is not an anomaly but the norm.
- Arezoo Najibzadeh
Arezoo Najibzadeh is a rising leader who immigrated to Canada from Iran in 2014. As Founder and Executive Director at Young Women’s Leadership Network, Arezoo manages organizational growth as well as advocacy and program delivery activities to build civic leadership capacity among marginalized Black, Indigenous, and racialized young women. As Chief Executive Officer at Pursou, she works to support start-up founders and business owners to pursue their dreams. Additionally, Arezoo is the co-host of Bad & Bitchy, a feminist politics and culture podcast. She is working toward a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Arts Contemporary Studies from Ryerson University.
What ignited your pursuit for gender equality?
A lack of adequate and meaningful representation of diverse communities, especially marginalized women, in decision making drives my pursuit for gender-equality.
Please share your biggest wins as an advocate for gender equality.
A watershed moment in my career came in 2018 when I established It’s Time, a set of survivor-centric, trauma-informed resources for addressing sexual violence in political institutions. This project has provided training to more than 100 politicians, political staff, and volunteers on creating consent culture within campaigns and in legislatures.
Outside of your gender equality advocacy work, what do you enjoy doing?
In my free time, I visit art galleries and museums or share a cup of tea with friends.
- English (Advanced/Native)
- Farsi (Advanced/Native)
- Spanish (Elementary)
- GBV against women in politics and leadership
- systemic chance to encourage women's political participation
- intersectional and feminist leadership
Past Awards, Certifications, or Fellowships:
- YWCA Toronto Young Woman of Distinction (2020-2021)
- DiverseCity Onboard Training
- Agents of Change: SDGs by Centre for Social Innovation
- Fellow at Muslim Youth Fellowship