Samra Zafar is a multiple award winning, top graduate of the University of Toronto, a Public Speaker on women’s rights, a mother, and a social entrepreneur.
After arriving in Canada as a 16 year old bride in an arranged marriage, Samra faced over a decade of oppression and opposition against her education. Refusing to give up, she pursued her education as a single mother while working multiple jobs and raising her daughters. She completed her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Economics from the University of Toronto with the highest distinctions, while winning over a dozen awards and scholarships. She was the first mature student to win the most prestigious John Moss Award, a $17k scholarship awarded annually to the single most outstanding student across all three U of T campuses, spanning over 100,000 students. She was also the recipient of the Ontario Graduate Scholarship, the Agnes Ireland Award, Faculty Choice Award and many others during her university career and in the community. She was named the Top Student in Economics in the entire University upon graduation. Samranow works as a Commercial Account Manager at RBC Royal Bank. She is an active board member of multiple women’s organizations and is a career mentor with numerous alumni associations.
Samra is heavily involved in awareness work around women’s empowerment. As a public speaker on several prominent platforms including Amnesty International , she advocates for women’s rights and empowers women to pursue their right to live a life of respect and dignity.Samra continues to appear in several media outlets where she promotes education and empowerment, especially among women. Her work was featured in a cover story for a very prominent South Asian magazine, Generation Next, the Mississauga News and the Toronto Star.Samra is also the founder of an upcoming GTA-wide initiative dedicated to helping women with disadvantaged backgrounds build their lives through personalized mentorship and support, as well as raise awareness against social injustices that hinder women’s advancement.
Samra was recently elected as an Alumni Governor on the Governing Council of the University of Toronto. She is one of 8 highly distinguished alumni to serve on the most senior governing body of the university.