Abigail Zatarain with her Excellence in Human Resources – Best in Emiratisation award

Abigail Zatarain is a dynamic and accomplished professional with a passion for driving impactful change in the field of Emiratisation. With a background in recruitment and human resources, she brings a wealth of expertise and insights to her role as a leader in Emirati talent empowerment.

Abigail holds a master’s degree in psychology from a prestigious university, where she graduated with honours. Her educational background, combined with her hands-on experience in recruitment agencies, sparked her interest in the field of Emiratisation and its potential to create positive social and economic impact in the UAE.

Driven by her desire to make a difference, Abigail immersed herself in the intricacies of Emiratisation, dedicating her career to empowering UAE nationals and fostering inclusive work environments. Her relentless commitment to this cause has earned her recognition and acclaim, including the prestigious Excellence Award for her outstanding contributions to the field.

Throughout her career, Abigail has demonstrated a knack for innovation and strategic thinking, pioneering initiatives that have significantly increased Emirati employment across various industries. From developing tailored training programmes to placing Emirati professionals in C-suite positions, she has played a pivotal role in reshaping the landscape of Emiratisation in the UAE.

The Excellence in Human Resources – Best in Emiratisation award holds profound significance for me, especially after nearly 15 years in the industry. In recent years, I’ve committed to bringing my vision to the forefront of Emiratisation, striving to establish a benchmark for excellence and inclusivity within recruitment agencies. This recognition not only reaffirms my dedication to the field but also underscores the capabilities of an all-woman team to thrive in a male-dominated industry. It validates that determined women can lead and succeed, showcasing the potential of an all-female recruitment team to excel in placements while maintaining a steadfast focus on Emiratisation.

- Abigail Zatarain, Managing Director of Villegas Recruitment Firm

One of Abigail’s key achievements has been her role in diversifying talent pools and empowering Emirati women to pursue leadership roles in traditionally male-dominated sectors. As a member of an all-woman team at Villegas Firm and an active participant in several business women groups in the UAE, she has mentored and supported aspiring women, championing their success and amplifying their voices in the industry.

Abigail’s commitment to excellence, coupled with her dedication to empowering women and driving positive change, has positioned her as a respected leader and trailblazer in the field of Emiratisation. Her future plans include advancing in leadership roles, promoting thought leadership, and advocating for policy change to create more inclusive and equitable work environments for all.

A visionary leader, Abigail Zatarain has a relentless passion for advancing Emiratisation and empowering women in the workforce. Her dedication, expertise, and unwavering commitment to excellence have earned her widespread acclaim and recognition as a driving force for positive change in the UAE.