Nizar Zakka is an internationally-recognized expert in information and communications technology (ICT) policy, bringing more than 20 years of experience representing the ICT sector in the Middle East North Africa region.
After earning his B.S. and M.S. from the University of Texas in 1991, Nizar launched several IT companies in his home country of Lebanon, was CEO to the Professional Computer Association and served as secretary general for The Arab ICT Organization (IJMA3). He later was appointed as the Vice President of the World Information Technology and Services Alliance- a consortium of IT industry association members from over 80 countries, representing over 90 percent of the world ICT market. While speaking at a conference in Iran in 2015 on harnessing technology to bridge the digital divide in MENA, Nizar was kidnapped and taken hostage in Tehran where he remained for four years. Released in June 2019, Nizar now advocates for the release of political hostages both in Iran and worldwide and works to enhance internet freedom and the use of technology for peacebuilding globally..