Born in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, the Sheikh was educated at the University of Denver in political science. He is the Chairman of Emirates Airline, Dubai Aviation City Corporation, Dubai World, flydubai, Noor Islamic Bank PJSC, among other companies. His career in the aviation industry began in 1985 when he was appointed President of the Dubai Department of Civil Aviation, the governing body that oversees all of aviation in his country. Emirates, the national carrier, was launched at the same time and he was appointed chairman. His role in the transformation of Dubai into a global city, he has been called “the man who put Dubai on the global aviation map.”

The Sheikh was the recipient of the “Aviation Entrepreneur of the Year Award” at the 5th Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards.