First Female Sharia Judge in Palestine
Hijri Unknown-Present (AH); Common Era Unknown-Present (CE)
Kholoud Al-Faqih obtained her law degree with honors from the University of Jerusalem in 1999. She received a Master's degree in private law from the same university in 2005. In 2001, she received her license to practice law and worked as a lawyer at the Women's Center for Legal Aid and Counseling, an organization dedicated to assisting battered women. From 2003 to 2008, she worked for the Defense of Battered Women where she gained extensive litigation experience. In 2008, she passed two competitive judicial exams in Ramallah, excelling in the Islamic law portions. One year later, she was appointed as a judge in the Shari'a Court of Ramallah, making her the first female Sharia judge in Palestine. In 2012, CEO Middle East Magazine ranked her #10 out of the "100 Most Powerful Arab Women" in the world. She is also the star of Erika Chon's documentary film The Judge, which documents shari'a law through the eyes of the first woman judge to be appointed to the Middle East's religious courts.