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Dr. Ihsan Bagby

Ihsan Bagby is an ISPU Expert and an Associate Professor in the department of Islamic Studies at the University of Kentucky. His research has focused on Muslims in America.  In 2001 he published the results of the first comprehensive study of mosques in America, entitled The Mosque in America: A National Portrait.  Based on the 2001 study, Dr. Bagby has published four articles, “Imams and Mosque Organizations in the United States,” in Muslims in the United States, “A Profile of African American Mosques” in Journal of the Interdenominational Theological Center, “Attitudes of Mosque Participants Towards America,” in the forthcoming book A Nation of Religions: The Politics of Pluralism in Multireligious America, and “The Mosque in the American Public Square,” in Muslims’ Place in the American Public Square  Dr. Bagby received his PhD in Near Eastern studies from the University of Michigan with a specialty in Islamic Law.

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Dr. Dalia Fahmy

Dr. Dalia Fahmy is Associate Professor of Political Science at Long Island University where she teaches courses on US Foreign Policy, World Politics, International Relations, Military and Defense Policy, Causes of War, and Politics of the Middle East. Dr. Fahmy is a Senior Fellow at the Center for Global Policy in Washington DC, and a Visiting Scholar at the Center for the Study of Genocide and Human Rights and UNESCO Chair at Rutgers University for 2018.

Dr. Fahmy’s books include The Rise and Fall of The Muslim Brotherhood and the Future of Political Islam (forthcoming), and two co-edited volumes Illiberal Intelligentsia and the Future of Egyptian Democracy, and International Relations in a Changing World.

Dr. Fahmy has published several articles in academic journals focusing on democratization and most recently on the effects of Islamophobia on US foreign policy. She has given several briefings on the future of democracy in the Middle East. She has been interviewed by and written editorials in various media outlets including ABC, CBS, CBC, CNBC, CNN, MSNBC, PBS, the Huffington Post, the Immanent Frame, the Washington Post, and appears often on Aljazeera. She has presented her research in various venues including Columbia, Georgetown, Harvard, Princeton, UCLA, The Middle East Institute, The Asia Society, The World Bank, The Wilson Center and The Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy.

Dr. Fahmy has won several academic awards and fellowships for her research. In 2014, Dr. Fahmy was one of the recipients of the prestigious Kleigman Prize in Political Science, was the 2016 recipient of the Newton Prize for Excellence in Teaching, and in 2017 was named NPR’s “Source if the Week.”

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​Dr. Ayman Hammous

​Dr. Ayman Hammous is currently the Executive Director of MAS National, he lives in SI, NY and married, with five children. He holds a doctorate degree in Physical therapy from Stoney Brook University. He is the former ED and Vice President of MAS national.

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Rowaida Abdelaziz

Rowaida Abdelaziz is a journalist at HuffPost, where she focuses on on civil rights and social justice issues within the Muslim community. Based in New York City, Rowaida spearheads the coverage of Islamophobia and the rising anti-Muslim sentiment where she provides guidance for diverse coverage of the Muslim Americans within mainstream media.
Some of her notable work include documenting the challenges that Muslim women face, to exposing anti-Muslim employee discrimination in the workplace as well as reporting on Islamophobic legislations and policies. In 2016, Rowaida was a lead reporter for the Islamophobia Tracker, a project that documented the anti-Muslim rhetoric. Fluent in Arabic, Rowaida also covered the refugee crises in Syria, Yemen and other parts of the Arab world. Previously Rowaida was at the Committee to Protect Journalists and Al Jazeera.
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Dr. Mohamed Rida Beshir

Mohamed Rida Beshir is a Community Educator at The Family and Youth Institute. He holds a PhD in Telecommunications and a Master’s in Engineering from Carlton University as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in Telecommunications from Alexandria University. In addition, he has pursued independent studies in marriage and family studies as well as classical Islamic sciences in the areas of Quranic exegesis (tafseer), Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh), and Human Development (tarbiyah) with varying scholars. He is the author of many popular books including, When Muslim Teens Rebel: Causes and Solutions and Family Leadership (Qawama): An Obligation to Fulfill, not an Excuse to Abuse. Dr. Beshir has also co-authored numerous internationally recognized books on marriage and parenting with his wife, Dr. Ekram Beshir including, Meeting the Challenge of Parenting in the West: An Islamic Perspective, Muslim Teens: Today’s Worry, Tomorrow’s Hope – a Practical Islamic Parenting Guide, Blissful Marriage, and, Parenting Skills based on Qur’an and Sunnah. His books have been translated into Arabic, French, German and Albanian. Dr. Beshir is an internationally renowned family life educator, presenting workshops on parenting, marriage, and human development (tarbiyah) throughout North America, Europe, Australia, South Africa, Morocco, and Malaysia.
Dr. Beshir has served the Muslim community for more than 40 years. He has been active at both the local and national levels through Muslim Student’s Association (MSA), Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), Muslim American Society (MAS), and Muslim Association of Canada (MAC). He is a Founding member of Human Concern International (HCI) and Family Dawn, and received The City of Ottawa Certificate of Appreciation for his volunteer work in the area of education. He is the father of four adult children and grandfather to many grandchildren.

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Imam Hamad Chebli

Imam Chebli is a native of Lebanon and attended one of the most prestigious Islamic institutions in the world, Al–Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt, where he received his master’s in Islamic Canonical Law. He has been the religious leader of ISCJ since 1986, where he makes Muslims and non–Muslims feel welcome.

The depth of his faith and scholarship, his commanding dignity, and the warmth of his personality make him the most prominent and attractive figure of Islam in our region. In a period where the public understanding of Islam has grown greatly, we are fortunate to have Imam Chebli in our community.

He has worked hard to build interfaith dialogue and public understanding, serving as a member of the North and South Brunswick Diversity Committee and of the regional clergy association. Most recently, New Jersey’s Governor appointed Imam Chebli to the Governor’s Leadership Summit on Diversity.

He and I have a friendship and association that has lasted many years, especially since September 2001, and I greatly value our friendship.

Imam Chebli is the proud husband of Mona Rich, and he is the loving father of their six children; Ahmad, Muhammad, Maryam, Mahmood, Khalid, and Marwa; and the loving grandfather to seven grandchildren.

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Dr. Mohammad Yunus

Dr. Mohammad Yunus served as President of ICNA for 17 years during 1977 – 2000. He has been a member of ICNA’s General Assembly since 1971. He is a successful cardiologist and Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at Florida State University, College of Medicine. He is also a scholar of Islam and the Imam/Director at Masjid Dawah in Bonifay, FL. Dr. Yunus has eight children and 25 grandchildren.

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Jane Aslam

Sister Jane Aslam is in a leadership position with nation’s largest domestic, Islamic faith-based, social services and disaster response agency. She is responsible for guidance and direction, implementation, oversight and monitoring of the national, disaster response program. Including all phases of disaster. She present at national conferences, conduct disaster related workshops, facilitate community based team building, and advocate for the needs of survivors of disasters – both Muslim and non-Muslim.

She serves as agency liaison to NVOAD (National Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster) and to other national, federal and state level partners, nationwide. She serves on several Board of Directors, as Committee Member, and as outreach point of contact.

She serves as Team Lead for Program Development and for the agency’s National Grant Writing Team.

She has been blessed to lead Disaster Response operations for 32 events (as of 10/14), beginning with Hurricane Katrina.

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Martin O’Malley

Martin O’Malley was sworn in as governor of Maryland on January 16, 2007.

O’Malley was born in Washington, D.C, and grew up in Bethesda and Rockville, Maryland, the eldest son in a family of six children. O’Malley attended Gonzaga College High School in Washington, D.C. He participated in the renowned Eagle program, serving in tutoring programs and other efforts to provide assistance for the residents in the impoverished neighborhood surrounding the school.

O’Malley received his bachelor’s degree from Catholic University and a law degree from the University of Maryland. In 1986, while in law school, he was named by then-Congresswoman Barbara Mikulski as state field director for her successful primary and general election campaigns for the U.S. Senate. From 1987 to 1988 he served as a legislative fellow for Senator Mikulski, where he focused on obtaining federal funding for projects in Maryland. In 1988, O’Malley was appointed assistant state’s attorney for the city of Baltimore. He served on the Baltimore City Council from 1991 to 1999, during which time he was chairman of the Legislative Investigations and Taxation and Finance Committees.

In 1999, O’Malley was elected mayor of Baltimore. During his seven years as mayor, O’Malley worked with the city’s citizens and public servants to make it a more beautiful, cleaner city where people want to live and businesses want to invest.

As governor, O’Malley’s policies helped build the public school system, drive violent crime down to a 35 year low and create jobs for Maryland families. In his second term, O’Malley continued to rely on the tenets of transparency, accountability and progress-driven results to make state government work again for the people.

O’Malley and his wife Katie, a District Court judge, have two daughters, Grace and Tara, and two sons, William and Jack. They are members of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church.

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Imam Wesley “Abu Sumayyah” Lebrón

Imam Wesley Lebrón is a Puerto Rican convert to Islam, born and raised in Passaic, NJ. He accepted Islam in 1998 and is a graduate of Mishkah University where he earned a B.A. in Islamic Studies. He served as the Vice President of Islamic Dawah Organization of Rockford (D.O.O.R.) from 2008-2012 and he was the president of the Latino Muslims of Chicago from 2010-2012 while living in Chicago, Il. In 2012 he returned to NJ where he has been serving as a regular lecturer for area mosques from 2012-present.

He was the national speaker and main fundraiser for IslamInSpanish, and one of the main figures in establishing the IslamInSpanish Centro Islámico, a Latino owned and operated Islamic center in Houston, TX from 2013-2017.

He is the Co-Founder and President of Esperanza Community Hub/Misericordia Para La Humanidad, under which he has led numerous humanitarian efforts to areas ravaged by natural disasters under “The 3 Puerto Rican Imams Project.”

He is currently the Imam of Jam-e-Masjid Islam Center in Boonton NJ, and he serves as the National Hispanic Dawah Coordinator for WhyIslam.