Hanan M. Ashrawi, official spokesperson for the Palestinian Delegation during the Middle East Peace Processes from 1991 to 1993, earned BA and MA degrees at AUB and a PhD from the University of Virginia (USA). A tireless peace activist for the independence of Palestine and promoter of Palestinian culture, she is also an author and an academic. She established the English Department at Palestine's Birzeit University in 1973, taught and chaired the department, and then served as dean of the Faculty of Arts 1986-90. Known as one of the most influential women in the Arab world, she remains active in Palestinian economic, social, political, and cultural organizations to this day. She is also currently a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council.