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4 April 1976
Politician Journalist & Television HostMember of the Lebanese Parliament
Paula Yacoubian (née Paulette Sirakan Yaghobian) (born April 4, 1976) is a Lebanese politician and law-maker of Armenian ethnic origins. She was previously known as a journalist and a television host. She is one of Lebanon’s most prominent television personalities. Throughout her career, she had worked as a host in a number of Lebanese and pan-Arab international television stations. She is known for the transformational impact she's had in her organizations and the broader community, Paula became one of the experts chosen by World Bank group as a member of their External Advisory Panel for Diversity and Inclusion due to her advocacy for the women rights, her efforts for women empowerment, as well as for being a fierce defender of electoral women quota and a fairer electoral law in Lebanon. In 2018, she announced her candidacy for the 2018 Lebanese General Elections, running for the Armenian Orthodox seat in the Beirut I constituency. She was officially announced as a winner following the elections which took place on Sunday 6 May 2018.
Yacoubian started work in June 1995 in ICN (Independent Communications Network), a Lebanese television station founded by Henri Sfeir. Through Sfeir's encouragement, who also had the license for Nida' al Watan newspaper, the then 19-year-old Yacoubian became a celebrity broadcasting news and interviews and appeared frequently in the news broadcasts of the station. She was later assigned as head of the station's regional and international news department and had her own talk news program, Al Sulta al Raabi'a (in Arabic السلطة الرابعة meaning the Fourth Power). She was very active in highlighting the Armenian Genocide in an Arabic language series.
After closure of ICN, Yacoubian moved to LBCI through the station's morning show Nharkon Saeed (in Arabic نهاركم سعيد, meaning Good Morning) in addition to presenting the news on the channel's international satellite broadcasts. Then she moved to the Lebanese station MTV where she presented the programme Min al Akhar (in Arabic من الأخر). She later worked in Arab Radio and Television Network (ART) where she presented a number of programmes on the satellite station's various channels ART al Awael, ART al Munawwaat and ART al Aalamiyyah. Various programmes Yacoubian hosted on ART included Ded al Tayyar (ضد التيار), Liqaa' Khass (لقاء خاص), Roui'ya Waadiha (رؤية واضحة) and Liqaa' min America (لقاء من أمريكا). She moved to Alhurra television based in the United States where her husband Muwaffak Harb ran the pro-American news channel.
Returning to Lebanon, Yacoubian worked in Future TV where she hosted the news talk show Inter-views. She interviewed Lebanese prime minister Saad Hariri in Saudi Arabia in a significant live broadcast direct from Riyadh after Hariri presented his resignation from the Saudi capital amidst rumors about his actual conditions in Saudi Arabia. This interview served in dispelling grave concerns about his status in Saudi Arabia, and included the announcement of his return to Lebanon.
As a humanist/social activist, always advocating on behalf of the less privileged, Paula was successful in launching “Dafa Campaign”, one of the largest and most successful donation campaigns in Lebanon and the Middle East for the second year in a row. "Dafa Campaign" has reached 14,800 underprivileged families in Lebanon in November 2015, 43,000 families in December 2016, and more than 100,000 in 2017.
Paula also offers 15 scholarships for students with outstanding performance who cannot afford their school tuition. On the professional side, Mrs. Yacoubian is also the CEO and General Manager of "Integrated Communications", a company specialized in communications strategy and media relations, as well as public speaking training. She is a certified trainer who attended several training courses and workshops in the US and has a degree in Administration & Political Science. She has been involved with political journalism since the beginning of her career at the age of 17. Yacoubian hosted shows on ICN, LBC, MTV, ART and Future TV. She has interviewed many of the world leaders and personalities and held town hall discussions and debates.
Yacoubian joined efforts with social activists and is running for the Lebanese parliamentary elections that will to be held in May 2018. On May 7, 2018, it was announced that she won a seat and is now a member of the parlement.
Last but not least, Paula, an ongoing enthusiast for ecology, has been actively raising awareness and participating in events of up-cycling for environmental sustainability. She has also launched projects and actively organized and participated in events and sea-diving clean-up campaigns.
Yacoubian is currently divorced and has a 13-year-old son, Paul. Also, she is of Armenian descent and the daughter of an Armenian Genocide survivor.
Yacoubian received many awards throughout her career, and in August 2017 she received a prominent award "Officier De L'Ordre de la Couronne" (Officer of the Order of the Crown) from King Philippe I of Belgium, in reward for all the work she has carried out.
- "Paula Yacoubian - Prestige Magazine". Prestige Magazine. Retrieved 2015-11-30.