Meet Hiyam McKelvey, a woman of diverse talents and unwavering commitment to art, activism, and empowerment. Yet, her story is intricately woven into the life of WeWork co-founder Miguel McKelvey, creating a partnership that extends far beyond professional collaboration.
Hiyam’s presence has been pivotal not only in shaping WeWork’s distinctive identity but also in catalyzing Miguel’s personal and professional journey. In this exploration, we delve into the life and contributions of Hiyam McKelvey, shedding light on her profound influence and her dedication to making the world a better place.
Early Life and Education of Hiyam McKelvey
Hiyam McKelvey’s journey begins with a rich tapestry of heritage and values that have profoundly shaped her life. Born to Palestinian parents, Hiyam’s upbringing in the United States was marked by a fusion of cultures and traditions. Her Palestinian roots instilled in her a deep appreciation for the importance of community, education, and social justice from an early age.
Within her family, the values of unity, community engagement, and the pursuit of social equality were not mere ideals but guiding principles. These principles would later find their expression in Hiyam’s remarkable endeavors.
Her educational journey, a pivotal chapter in her life, took her to the renowned University of California, Berkeley, where she pursued a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. This academic pursuit provided her with a solid foundation in the world of business and entrepreneurship, which would prove invaluable in her future pursuits.
But Hiyam’s journey did not stop there. She furthered her academic horizons by obtaining a degree in Architecture from the prestigious University of Michigan. This architectural background not only added a unique dimension to her skill set but also laid the groundwork for her significant contributions to the world of design and aesthetics.
Hiyam’s multicultural upbringing and multidisciplinary education would serve as the bedrock upon which she would build a career that spans diverse fields and reflects her unwavering commitment to excellence and innovation.
Career Journey of Hiyam McKelvey
Hiyam Khalifa McKelvey’s career is a testament to her ability to excel in diverse domains and leave an indelible mark wherever she goes. Her professional journey commenced as an architect, where she honed her skills and left her imprint on projects that demanded innovation and vision.
During the early stages of her career, Hiyam had the privilege of working with renowned architectural firms, including SOM (Skidmore, Owings & Merrill) and Gensler. Her tenure at these prestigious companies allowed her to gain invaluable experience and expertise in developing and overseeing large-scale architectural projects. It was here that she began to showcase her talent for design and her knack for transforming spaces into inspiring environments.
In 2015, Hiyam embarked on a new chapter by joining WeWork, the global co-working space provider, as the Director of Global Architecture and Design. This pivotal role thrust her into the forefront of the company’s meteoric rise and allowed her to make her mark on a global scale. As the architect behind WeWork’s distinctive and innovative designs, Hiyam played a significant role in shaping the company’s unique identity. Her creative vision and attention to detail contributed to the creation of WeWork facilities that were not merely workplaces but vibrant, collaborative ecosystems.
But Hiyam’s talents extend beyond architecture. She is also the co-founder of Haven, a wellness brand that stands at the intersection of mental and physical health. Haven offers a diverse range of services and products aimed at enhancing the overall well-being of individuals. This venture reflects Hiyam’s commitment to holistic health and her desire to make a positive impact on people’s lives beyond the realm of architecture.
Who is Miguel McKelvey?
Miguel McKelvey, born in 1974, is an American entrepreneur best known as the co-founder and former Chief Culture Officer of WeWork, a pioneering force in the world of co-working spaces. McKelvey’s journey begins with an unconventional upbringing in Eugene, Oregon, within a unique “five-mother collective” environment where his family ran the Eugene Weekly, a weekly newspaper. As a young basketball enthusiast, McKelvey found mentorship and discipline on the court, instilling in him a sense of accountability.
After graduating from South Eugene High School in 1992, McKelvey embarked on a path that would take him through various transformative experiences. His academic journey initially led him to Colorado College, but it was a sculpture he created that piqued the interest of his professor, Carl Reed, leading him to consider architecture for graduate school. He subsequently transferred to the University of Oregon, where he earned his Bachelor of Architecture degree in 1999.
McKelvey’s diverse career began with stints as a busboy and at an Alaskan fish processing plant before he ventured to Tokyo, where he co-founded English, Baby!, an online platform for foreign language courses. His entrepreneurial spirit then brought him to New York City, where he worked with Jordan Parnass Digital Architecture, overseeing the international retail rollout for American Apparel.
Fateful encounters led to the inception of WeWork. Meeting Adam Neumann in the same office building, they co-founded Green Desk in 2008, a precursor to WeWork. Miguel’s creativity and vision were instrumental in shaping the brand, with him designing the name, logo, and website overnight. WeWork officially launched in 2010, with its first office space in SoHo, Manhattan.
As WeWork’s Chief Culture Officer, Miguel directed construction, architecture, and web design while also being responsible for shaping the company’s culture. The We Company, a parent brand encompassing WeWork and other ventures, emerged under his leadership. His role led to recognition as one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in 2019.
In June 2020, Miguel McKelvey announced his departure from WeWork, marking the end of an era. Beyond his professional journey, Miguel’s personal life includes a previous marriage to Hiyam Khalifa, a former investment banker. His story embodies the spirit of entrepreneurship, creativity, and collaboration that has reshaped the modern workspace landscape.
Personal Interests and Hobbies
Beyond her illustrious career and contributions to various fields, Hiyam McKelvey’s personal interests and hobbies reveal a multifaceted individual with a deep appreciation for life’s diverse experiences.
1. Reading and Writing: Hiyam finds solace and inspiration in the world of words. She is an avid reader, constantly delving into the realms of literature to broaden her horizons and explore new ideas. Her love for literature is complemented by a passion for writing, allowing her to articulate her thoughts and creativity.
2. Yoga: For over a decade, Hiyam has embraced the practice of yoga as a vital part of her life. Beyond its physical benefits, yoga serves as a spiritual and mental journey, offering balance and tranquility in a fast-paced world. Hiyam’s commitment to yoga extends beyond personal practice, as she is also a certified yoga instructor, sharing the benefits of this ancient discipline with others.
3. Travel and Cultural Exploration: Hiyam McKelvey possesses an adventurous spirit that fuels her love for travel and cultural exploration. She finds joy in embarking on journeys to new destinations, immersing herself in different cultures, and savoring the rich tapestry of global experiences. This passion for travel not only enriches her own life but also influences her artistic perspectives, infusing her work with a diverse range of inspirations.
These personal interests and hobbies provide a glimpse into the well-rounded and dynamic nature of Hiyam McKelvey’s character. They underscore her insatiable curiosity and thirst for knowledge, further enriching her life’s narrative and contributing to her multifaceted identity.
Hiyam’s Impact on Miguel McKelvey
Hiyam McKelvey’s significance in the life of WeWork co-founder Miguel McKelvey extends far beyond the realms of mere partnership. Her profound influence has left an indelible mark on both his professional and personal journey, shaping him into the visionary leader and innovator that the world has come to know.
1. Source of Motivation: At the core of Hiyam and Miguel’s relationship lies a shared dedication to social justice, diversity, and inclusion. Their shared values became a wellspring of motivation that fueled their individual and collective ambitions. Hiyam’s unwavering commitment to making a positive impact on society resonated with Miguel’s own vision for WeWork as a platform for collaboration and social change. Her dedication inspired him to dream bigger, reach higher, and work tirelessly towards realizing their shared goals.
2. Encouragement and Guidance: In the often tumultuous world of entrepreneurship and business leadership, Hiyam has served as a pillar of strength for Miguel. Her unwavering encouragement and guidance have been instrumental in helping him navigate the challenges and complexities of leadership and business. Her perspective and insights have provided invaluable clarity and direction during pivotal moments in Miguel’s career, offering him the wisdom and support needed to overcome obstacles and achieve success.
Artistic Career and Activism
Hiyam McKelvey’s artistic journey is a testament to her profound ability to use creativity as a vehicle for change. Her art transcends mere aesthetics, delving into thought-provoking themes that challenge societal norms and ignite meaningful conversations about crucial issues such as identity, culture, and social justice.
1. Thought-Provoking Artistry: Hiyam McKelvey’s artistic style is characterized by its thought-provoking nature. Her creations serve as mirrors reflecting the complexities of the human experience, prompting viewers to confront their own perceptions and biases. Through her art, she explores the intricate tapestry of identity, delves into the nuances of cultural diversity, and shines a spotlight on the pressing issues of social justice. Her work is a call to action, inviting viewers to engage in critical dialogue and reflection.
2. Acclaimed Exhibitions: Hiyam’s art has graced galleries and art events worldwide, garnering critical acclaim and recognition for its depth and impact. Her exhibitions have offered audiences the opportunity to immerse themselves in her unique artistic vision. The appreciation and acclaim she has received from art enthusiasts and critics alike serve as a testament to the power of her creative expression in sparking meaningful discourse and change.
3. Commitment to Social Activism: Beyond her artistry, Hiyam McKelvey is deeply committed to social activism. Her dedication to making a positive impact on society extends into the realms of women’s empowerment, education, and environmental sustainability. She actively supports initiatives and causes aimed at empowering women, providing mentorship, and creating spaces where they can thrive. Her advocacy transcends personal endeavors as she collaborates with organizations that promote gender equality and champion women’s rights.
Hiyam McKelvey stands as a passionate advocate for women’s empowerment, dedicating her time and efforts to champion the cause of gender equality and provide opportunities for women to thrive and succeed in diverse fields.
1. Advocacy for Women’s Empowerment: Hiyam’s commitment to women’s empowerment is palpable in her actions and initiatives. She believes fervently in creating spaces and opportunities where women can flourish and reach their full potential. Her advocacy extends across multiple domains, reflecting her deep-seated belief in the transformative power of gender equality.
2. Support for Female Entrepreneurs: One of the hallmarks of Hiyam’s advocacy is her active involvement in initiatives that support female entrepreneurs. She understands the unique challenges and barriers that women often face in the business world, and she endeavors to break down these obstacles. Through mentorship, guidance, and resources, she provides crucial support to women pursuing their entrepreneurial dreams, paving the way for their success.
3. Collaboration for Gender Equality: Hiyam collaborates closely with organizations that are at the forefront of promoting gender equality and women’s rights. Her partnerships amplify the collective efforts aimed at dismantling systemic biases and fostering an environment where women can thrive in all aspects of life. Through her involvement, she contributes her expertise and influence to the ongoing struggle for gender parity.
Net Worth and Financial Background
Hiyam Khalifa’s journey is marked by a diverse range of accomplishments, including a foray into the financial sector that showcases her multifaceted skills and expertise.
While the precise details of her financial career are not widely disclosed, it is known that Hiyam began her professional journey in a series of banking institutions. Her early experiences in the world of finance laid the groundwork for her versatile skill set and her ability to navigate complex financial landscapes.
Her estimated net worth is believed to be in the realm of $1 million, although this figure remains approximate and subject to change. Hiyam’s net worth is a testament to her determination and success in various fields, from finance to architecture, art, and entrepreneurship.
In the tapestry of modern visionaries, Hiyam McKelvey’s journey stands as a testament to the transformative power of art, activism, and philanthropy. Her life’s narrative weaves together a rich tapestry of accomplishments, each thread resonating with purpose and impact.
As an artist, Hiyam’s canvas transcends mere aesthetics, delving deep into thought-provoking themes of identity, culture, and social justice. Her creations are not merely artwork but catalysts for dialogue and change, challenging societal norms and igniting conversations that matter.
As an activist, Hiyam’s commitment to social causes knows no bounds. Her unwavering dedication to women’s empowerment, education, and environmental sustainability is an embodiment of her belief in creating a better world for all. Her actions inspire others to join her in the pursuit of justice and equality.
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