Success stories of Palestinian achievers from all over the world

Maha Freij

Personal Info

  • Country of residence: United States
  • Gender: Female
  • Age: 0
  • Curriculum vitae :


Deputy Executive Director & Chief Financial Officer

Maha Freij is the Deputy Executive Director & Chief Financial Officer at ACCESS, and is a leading visionary in the Arab American community with regard to philanthropy and building strong institutions to strengthen the voice of the community in American civil society.  

Under her leadership, the Center for Arab American Philanthropy (CAAP), a national program of ACCESS, has established itself as the only national Arab American community foundation in the U.S., connecting philanthropists across the country and helping them to make a greater impact. Maha has also been a key leader in growing ACCESS from its roots as a regional human services organization, to what it is today — a community builder nationwide. 

Since 1998, she has spearheaded the institutionalization of a sophisticated development strategy at ACCESS, assembling a strong team of staff and volunteers who continue to grow and expand the organization’s fundraising capacity to support its more than 100 programs. Under Maha’s visionary leadership, ACCESS has successfully raised tens of millions of dollars for endowment building and various brick-and-mortar projects, including the first-ever Arab American National Museum in the United States.

In addition, Maha oversees ACCESS’ $22 million operational budget, generated from more than 100 funding sources. Her solid experience in management and operations, combined with her visionary approach to philanthropy and community, has positioned ACCESS as the leading organization addressing the many complex issues that face the Arab American community.   

Maha currently serves on the board of the United Palestinian Appeal. She is also a community board member of the Wayne State University Physician Group and serves on the University of Michigan - Dearborn’s Citizens Advisory Committee. Her prior board memberships and affiliations include One D Initiative – Champions Council; the Mosaic Youth Theatre; Leadership Detroit; ACLU-Michigan; and the Independent Sector Advisory Group on Nonprofit Effectiveness. She is the recipient of numerous awards and distinctions, including the American Task Force for Palestine’s 2011Distinguished Service in Philanthropy Award; the Arab American Association of New York’s 2010 Community Service Award; the Arab American Heritage Council’s 2010 Community Leader of the Year Award; Alternatives for Girls’ 2005 Role Model Award; Crain's Detroit Business, Best Managed Non-Profit Organization, 2000; and New Detroit, Inc.’s 1996 Richard Fisher Fiscal Integrity Award.

Maha is a graduate of the Hebrew University with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and economics. She is credited as the first Arab/Palestinian woman to earn a CPA license in Israel in 1989 – the same year she immigrated to the United States.



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