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To mark the 40th anniversary of its operation in the U.A.E., SABIS® hosted a gala dinner in Dubai on February 10, 2017. SABIS® co-founders Leila Saad and Ralph Bistany, as well as several SABIS® Board members, including SABIS® President Carl Bistany and SABIS® Vice President Victor Saad, warmly welcomed prominent guests including government officials, business associates, partners, school directors, staff, and alumni, all of whom enjoyed a gala evening filled with speeches, awards, and entertainment.

Pictured l. to r.: Serge Bakhos, Ralph Bistany, Abdullah Al Mazrui, Leila Saad, Victor Saad, Carl Bistany, and Ghassan Kansou

Speakers at the event included SABIS® Vice President Victor Saad, U.A.E. Minister of State for Youth and SABIS® alumnus Her Excellency Shamma Al Mazrui, and SABIS® President Carl Bistany. In his welcome speech, Victor Saad reflected on the network’s 40th anniversary in the U.A.E. “Entering the U.A.E. was a turning point in the history of SABIS® and we will always be grateful for the hospitality, trust, and support of its authorities. In every sense, this country has been a second home for us, a prominent steppingstone in our evolution, and it will remain deeply embedded in our hearts.” In her speech, H.E. Shamma Al Mazrui, who is currently the youngest serving minister in the world, took the opportunity to thank SABIS® and her alma mater for equipping her with all the tools she needed to achieve success. Carl Bistany rounded out the speakers on the program by saying, “SABIS® has been guided over the past 40 years by a mission to give students a high-quality education that prepares them for success regardless of what the future holds. Based on the success achieved by more than a generation of our students [in the U.A.E.], I can say with confidence that we have fulfilled our mission. We are proud of what we have accomplished here and are committed to continuing to empower students in the U.A.E. and around the world for generations to come.

During the event, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum presented SABIS® Co-founder Ralph Bistany, who has been a driver of the network’s U.A.E. development for 40 years, with an award in recognition of his “unwavering lifetime commitment to enhancing education.”

Guests were also treated to live entertainment. Perhaps the most memorable performance was put on by students from SABIS® schools in the U.A.E. including ISC-Dubai, ISC-Abu Dhabi, and ISC-Sharjah. Fifty (50) students in grades 5 to 9 moved the guests with a performance of Michael Jackson's Heal the World.

SABIS®’s history in the U.A.E. dates back to 1976, with the opening of the International School of Choueifat – Sharjah. Today, the network operates 14 schools in the U.A.E. and educates close to 28,000 students there.

For highlights of the gala celebration, visit