Mentors as Mirrors

Dr. Rihab Saadeddine:  Mentors as Mirrors

Growing up in Lebanon, the women in Dr. Saadeddine’s family were primarily focussed on family issues.  They were strong women whose voices made a difference in family matters, but rarely looked beyond their roles as wife, mother and grandmother.  Their combined voices sent a message that education for women is very important, even though many had not gone beyond high school. They set the stage for Dr. Saadeddine to enter her quest self-discovery.

When Dr. Saadeddine started working and continued her higher education, she saw many women as role models: women in leadership roles; women making a difference.  She watched how they spoke, what they did and how they interacted. Every encounter was a learning experience. If you ask her, she would say, “I still do this!”  I considered the women around me as mentor-mirrors with characteristics that I could emulate.

Some leaders map their journey into segments of time.  Dr. Rihab Saadeddine thinks of her journey as a continual process of self-analysis.  Always reflecting upon achievements, she asks herself, “Was it enough? Did I achieve the desired goals?  Was the process the most efficient? And, most importantly, “What did I learn from this experience?” She would admit this habit of self-evaluation is both a barrier and a blessing.   

​Dr. Rihab Saadeddine has some advice for women who are finding their own authentic voice and who are in the exciting journey of self-discovery:  Be intentional about growing; Learn from others; work hard and lastly, be an advocate for yourself.


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