TOLEDO, OH– Zeba Khan, a Toledo native and social media consultant for nonprofits, has reached the final round of Americaâ€™s Next Great Pundit contest, sponsored by the Washington Post. She is one of the ten finalists selected from a pool of 4800 entrants.
According to an online biography, last year she founded Muslim-Americans for Obama, a social network dedicated to mobilizing the Muslim-American community in the presidential campaign.
Her work and writings have been featured in numerous media outlets, including Newsweek, National Public Radio, Reuters, Voice of America, Washington Post, the Guardian, and the Stanford Social Innovation Review.
Her work was highlighted at the 2009 Personal Democracy Forum Conference in New York.
A Fulbright Scholar, Ms. Khan received a masterâ€™s degree from the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy and degrees from the University of Chicago.
The contest winner, to be announced about Nov. 24, will get the chance to write a weekly column that may appear in the print and/or online editions of the Washington Post, paid at a rate of $200 per column, for a total of 13 weeks and $2,600.
Parliament of the Worldâ€™s Religions elects Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid
CHICAGO, IL– – At its biannual meeting Oct. 18-19, the Board of Trustees of the Council for a Parliament of the Worldâ€™s Religions elected as its chair Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid. The board met in Williams Bay, Wis.
Imam Mujahidâ€™s term begins Jan. 1, 2010. He succeeds the Rev. Dr. William E. Lesher, who has served as chair since 2003. Imam Mujahid is an imam in the Chicago Muslim community and president of Sound Vision Foundation, which produces Radio Islam, Americaâ€™s only daily Muslim call-in talk show.
The Rev. Dr. Lesher said he considers Imam Mujahid â€œmarvelously equippedâ€ to serve as the boardâ€™s highest elected officer.
â€œHe brings to the chair a deep commitment to his own faith tradition,â€ the Rev. Dr. Lesher said. â€œHe is a recognized leader in that tradition. He has an understanding of how religion is a force in American society and also in societies throughout the world.â€
The organization traces its roots to the 1893 Parliament of the Worldâ€™s Religions, which took place in conjunction with the Worldâ€™s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. In 1993 the council organized and hosted the first modern Parliament of the Worldâ€™s Religions, also in Chicago. Subsequent Parliaments have been held in 1999 in Cape Town, South Africa; and in 2004 in Barcelona, Spain.
â€œMost older things are known to fade away, but the Parliament is a phenomenon that constantly reinvents itself,â€ Imam Mujahid said. â€œWe were ahead of our ourselves in Cape Town when we started engaging guiding institutions around the world on sustainability,â€ Imam Mujahid said. â€œNow itâ€™s the talk of the town.â€
Imam Mujahid is former chair of the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago, and has written extensively on religion, public policy and applied aspects of Islamic living. Imam Mujahid has initiated a joint campaign between American Muslims and the National Organization of Women to declare rape a war crime.
Muslim students fast to help others
BLACKSBURG, VA–Muslim students at the Virginia Tech are going on fast so that others donâ€™t go hungry. The Muslim Students Associationâ€™s launched its annual fundraiser and day of fasting this week.
The Hungry Hokies Fast-a-Thon collects $7 to benefit the Blacksburg Interfaith Food Pantry from participants who refrain from consuming food for a day.
Those participating in the fast are pledged to not eat anything or drink water from dawn to dusk, which is consistent with the customs of Muslim culture.
â€œIt incorporates the traditional Muslim traditions of fasting,â€ said Asif Akhtar, president of the Muslim Student Association.
All the proceeds raised through the event will be directly donated to Blacksburg Interfaith Food Pantry, located on Main Street. The pantry deals only with families affected by hunger in Blacksburg. More than 1300 local residents are served, and the number is continually increasing.
Vote on Lilburn mosque this week
LILBURN,GA– The Lilburn City Council will vote this week on Dar-e-Abbas mosqueâ€™s request for zoning changes. It wants to keep the existing residential zoning on the part of the property that is closest to the adjacent residential neighborhoods.
The mosque wants the rest of the eight acres closest to Lawrenceville Highway zoned or rezoned to allow for the expansion.
One of the leaders of Lilburnâ€™s Dar-E-Abbas Mosque said Monday night that existing trees would be preserved as a buffer of 200 feet between the mosqueâ€™s proposed expansion and adjacent homes.
More than three acres of land â€œwill be undisturbed, thereâ€™ll be a big buffer, all natural, it will stay as it is,â€ said Wasi Zaidi.
Obituary: Mustafa M. Khan, 84, Cardiologist
Dr. Mustafa Khan, 84, of Cherry Hill, a cardiologist and family physician in Camden for more than half a century died last Tuesday. He had opened a family practice in Camden in 1958. The Trinidad born Dr. Khan was loved by his patients and was know for his social work.
He served as the physician for or Camden High School, the Camden County Sheriffâ€™s Department, and, for 18 years, the Camden City Jail.
He was active with Youth 2000, a YMCA mentoring program in Camden, and with the outreach ministries to the homeless at Solid Rock Worship Center in Clementon.
Dr. Khan grew up in Trinidad with 10 siblings. His parents were descendants of indentured laborers from eastern India who went to the Caribbean to work the sugarcane fields in the late 19th century.
As a young boy, he accompanied the local doctor on his rounds from village to village and â€œdetermined to one day also be of service to those in need,â€ his son said.
Dr. Khan earned bachelorâ€™s, masterâ€™s, and medical degrees from Howard University in Washington.
He is survived by his wife of 59 years, three sons, a daughter, six grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.