She is the daughter of Tunisian Major General Makki. She traveled to the United States in her early years, where she majored in electrical engineering at the Lewis & Clark College, and obtained a master's degree in computer science from the University of Portland.
She joined Aramco in 1982 as an information systems engineer, and then moved to the company’s engineering and project management division in March of 1984.
She quickly climbed up the ladder at Aramco, from project engineer, to process control engineer, to senior project engineer, to head of technical services unit for the monitoring of manufacturing methods, to head of electrical systems planning and information technology planning unit. In 1996, she headed the company’s planning department for IT facilities and electrical networks.
While working at Aramco, she oversaw a project to reduce the company's electricity consumption, which unlocked new revenue streams for the company. She drove the company’s adoption of the two-generation approach, using heat energy that used to go to waste into generating new energy.