Founder President, Women's Digital League
Maria Umar is the founder and president of Women’s Digital League (WDL) – a social enterprise providing digital training and positive computer-based work to Pakistani women. She has been working in the online digital outsourcing sphere for more than a decade. WDL is one of only two official partners of Facebook in Pakistan. Moreover, UpWork, the largest marketplace for freelancers, has also partnered with WDL for its Social Impact Project.
Having graduated from Thunderbird School of Global Management’s Project Artemis/Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women Program, Maria was coached and mentored by top business professors and talent from the Silicon Valley.
She successfully implemented the first Digital Livelihood Training Project (DLTP) funded by World Bank in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KP) to teach women how to “e-lance”. Punjab Information Technology Board also had her as an advisor for their TechHub initiative working on same goal as WDL; training of youth in digital work.
Google Pakistan profiled WDL in its online campaign showcasing innovation in the use of technology. Maria was nominated a Thought Leader by Ashoka Changemakers. WDL also won the Early Stage Award in Changemakers' "Women Powering Work" competition.
She was appointed as the first Chairperson of Think Tank Committee of WeCreate Center. WomenX, a project of World Bank, also has Maria in the forefront as Project Manager and Consultant for Sustainable Business Practices. She also works as a freelance consultant with development organizations on topics related to economic empowerment of women.
Local and International media has featured her as an innovative leader. These publications include Mashable, Forbes, Virgin, Ashoka, Express Tribune, Dawn, BBC and CNBC to name a few. Maria is also actively working to encourage girls to opt for STEM at an early age. As such she is credited with bringing the Technovation Challenge to Pakistan.