Born on April 15, 1962, in Casablanca, she obtained a Master’s degree in Physical Education and Physiotherapy from the University of Iowa (USA).  She became an inspector at the Ministry of Youth and Sports (1989-1997) before becoming Secretary of State to the Minister of Social Affairs, responsible for Youth and Sport (1997-1998).  Ten years later she returned to a ministerial portfolio, obtaining the portfolio of Youth and Sports (2007-2009). She was the Moroccan champion in 100m, 200m and 400m hurdles (1977-1987).  She was the African Champion in 400m hurdles (1983) and was eliminated on the same distance in the semi-final of the first World Athletics Championships in Helsinki.  She was also the US 400m hurdles champion (1984) while studying at the University of Iowa.

She was the Olympic champion in the 400m hurdles at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. She was the first ever Olympic champion in this distance to come from Morocco but also the first from the Arab world. She also won the gold medal in 400m hurdles at the Mediterranean Games of Casablanca (1983) and Latakia (1987) and also added a bronze medal in the 4X100m relay at home in Morocco. She won the bronze medal in 400m hurdles at the World University Games in Kobe (1985) and the gold medal in Zagreb (1987). She contributed to the development of sports in Africa and in particular to the democratisation of women’s sports in the Arab countries which sometimes considered the practice of sports by a woman as inappropriate.

She was a member and then became vice-president of the IAAF Athletes’ Commission (1989-). Active as a sprint and hurdles coach (1990). Member of the Moroccan NOC (1992-). Served as Deputy Director (1993-1997), then as Vice-President (1997-) of the Moroccan Athletics Federation. Member of the African Athletics Confederation (1995-).  Also a member of the IAAF Executive Board (1995-). Executive Director of the Fondation BCME for Education and Environment (1999-). Member of the International Committee of the Francophone Games. Member of the International Committee of  Mediterranean Games.  Vice President of the Moroccan Association for the 2006 Football World Cup (2000). Founding member (2000), then Vice-President of the Laureus World Sports Academy (2004-). Member of the Council of the International Athletics Foundation (2001-).

Founding member and President of the Moroccan Sport and Development Association (2002-); member of the FIFA Women’s Football Committee (2004) and then of the FIFA Women’s Competitions Committee (2007). She joined the IOC in 1998 and became a member of the Executive Committee (2008-2016, then 2020-), and also served as the IOC Vice-President (2012-2016). She is a member of numerous Olympic Games Evaluation or Coordination Commissions and Chairwoman of the Evaluation Commission for the Games of the XXX Olympiad in 2012 (2004-2005), the Evaluation Commission of the Games of the XXXI Olympiad in 2016 (2008-2009) and the Coordination Commission for the Games of the XXXI Olympiad in Rio in 2016 (2010).