Sarah Attar

first Olympic Runner from Saudi Arabia

  • One of the first two women to represent Saudi Arabia at the Olympics
  • Received special invitation from the International Olympic Committee
  • Received a standing ovation from countless spectators


Sarah Attar is a name that resonates with the spirit of diversity, inclusion, women’s rights, and female empowerment. In 2012, she made history as one of the first two women to represent Saudi Arabia at the Olympics, marking a transformative moment in the nation’s sporting history. During the London Olympics, despite finishing last in her 800m heat, Sarah received a standing ovation, symbolising not just personal perseverance but a collective step forward for women, particularly in Saudi Arabia. Her participation, celebrated globally, became a beacon of hope and change, demonstrating the power of inclusive representation in sports.

Sarah’s journey from a student-athlete at Pepperdine University in California, where she excelled in multiple track events, to an Olympic trailblazer is a testament to her determination and vision. Her dual US-Saudi citizenship allowed her to bridge cultures, and her decision to represent Saudi Arabia was driven by a desire to catalyse positive changes for female athletes in the Kingdom. Her participation in the 2012 Olympics, under special invitation from the International Olympic Committee, challenged the traditional norms and opened new doors for women in sports in Saudi Arabia and beyond.

Her Olympic debut at 19 years old, running the 800m in 2 minutes and 44.95 seconds, might not have broken athletic records, but it shattered significant societal barriers. This performance was not about winning but about participating and symbolising a larger fight for equality and rights. Sarah’s subsequent improvement in her personal best at the 2018 Chicago Marathon underscores her ongoing commitment to excellence and resilience, further enhancing her role as a spokesperson for empowerment.

Today, Sarah Attar stands as a compelling keynote speaker, bringing her unique experiences and insights to the forefront of discussions on diversity, inclusion, and women’s empowerment. Her story, marked by overcoming adversity and championing change, makes her an ideal voice to inspire and motivate audiences across the world. Her ability to articulate the importance of mental resilience, tenacity, and equality makes her an invaluable addition to any event focused on shaping a more inclusive and equitable society.

To enquire about Sarah Attar for your event or corporate function, simply contact us via or call a booking agent on 0203 9816 297.