Ziauddin Yousafzai
Co-Founder, Malala Fund
Call 424.288.2898

Biography Print Bio

Ziauddin Yousafzai is a co-founder and board member of Malala Fund. He is the father of Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Malala Yousafzai. For many years, Ziauddin served as a teacher and school administrator in his home country of Pakistan.

Growing up, Ziauddin’s parents encouraged him to attend school, while his sisters remained at home. He recognized the disparity and knew one day he would treat his children equally. When Malala was born in 1997, he named her after Malalai, a Pashtun heroine. Ziauddin proudly recorded Malala’s birth on the family tree — she was the first girl to be included.

When the Taliban invaded their home in Swat Valley, Ziauddin peacefully resisted their efforts to limit personal freedoms. Speaking out put Ziauddin at risk, but he feared remaining silent would be far worse. Inspired by her father’s example, Malala began publicly campaigning for girls to go to school.

In October 2009, The New York Times filmed a short documentary about Ziauddin and Malala’s fight to protect girls’ education in Swat. Due to her increased prominence, Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban two years later. Malala survived the attack and was transported to the United Kingdom for treatment. Ziauddin, his wife, Toor Pekai and their two sons joined Malala in Birmingham.

Determined to continue their campaign, Ziauddin and Malala founded Malala Fund. Together they champion every girl’s right to 12 years of free, safe, quality education.

Ziauddin currently resides in Birmingham, UK.

Speech Topics

  • My daughter, Malala
    Through stories from his own life and the life of his daughter, Malala Yousafzi, who was shot by the Taliban in 2012 for fighting for girls’ education, Ziauddin Yousafzai reminds us of the power in raising your voice.

  • Men's role in gender equality
    Ziauddin is a proud feminist and believes that men must be equally committed to tackling the patriarchy. Drawing on experiences from his childhood, life in Pakistan and his travels meeting out-of-school girls from around the world, Ziauddin explains how men can help create a more equal future.

  • Investing in education
    When conflict in Pakistan forced Ziauddin to close his school, it put the futures of his students at risk. Ziauddin explains the importance of safe schools and why investing in girls’ education is the best investment the world can make.

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