2010 Awardee Profiles

Posted on April 05, 2010 in Arab American Institute

Hon. Richard M. Daley Award for Individual Achievement Mayor Richard Daley of Chicago is being recognized for his leadership role in promoting Sister City relationships in the Arab world. In 2008, he convened the first ever U.S. Arab Cities Forum along with Chicago Sister Cities International. The conference brought together nearly 50 mayors and municipal leaders from a variety of Arab nations to discuss issues related to education, economic development, and the environment. The Mayor was a featured speaker at the second convening in Amman, Jordan in 2009 and continues to encourage strong sister city ties between Chicago and...

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Farouk Shami: First Palestinian American to Run for Texas Governor

Posted by on February 18, 2010 in Blog

As the first Palestinian American to run for governor in Texas, Farouk Shami embodies the classic “American Dream.” Since coming to the U.S. as a student from Ramallah forty-five years ago, Shami has worked his way to the forefront of the business world and is the Founder and Chairman of Farouk Systems, Inc. Although his company has been incredibly successful throughout the world, known for the innovative and extremely popular BioSilk and CHI products, he is now venturing from his role as a businessman into politics. Shami has entered the political scene with a desire to bring economic revival...

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AbiNader, Baadani talk to Army EEO advisors

Posted by on January 21, 2010 in News Clips

On Monday December 14, 2009, Jean AbiNader, AAI board member and COO of the Moroccan Center, and Jamal Baadani, founder of the Association of Patriotic Arab Americans in Military, presented to over 100 U.S. Army Equal Opportunity Advisors studying at the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI). The presentation at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. afforded a timely opportunity to explore issues unique to Arab and Muslim American soldiers in the field.

“As an AAI member, it is really important to me to continue educating people, especially those who can advocate for our community,...

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The Arab Americans

Posted on January 12, 2010 in Arab American Institute

There are about 3.5 million Arab Americans, and as a community, we’ve been demonstrating loyalty, inventiveness, and courage on behalf of the United States for over 100 years. Here are just a few of the famous and accomplished ones – people you may know!

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2009 Kahlil Gibran Gala

Posted on December 22, 2009 in Arab American Institute

On Thursday, April 23rd, 2009, more than 700 guests from across the U.S. and the globe descended on Washington, D.C. for the 11th annual Kahlil Gibran “Spirit of Humanity” Awards gala hosted by the Arab American Institute Foundation (AAIF). The black tie affair began with opening remarks from Assistant to the President Valerie Jarrett. The awards ceremony honors individuals and organizations that toil – often unnoticed – to address some of the world’s most pressing humanitarian problems. This year’s program was launched by the gracious appearance and remarks of Her Majesty Queen Noor al-Hussein.

AAIF presented Kahlil Gibran...

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Arab Americans

Posted on December 11, 2009 in Arab American Institute

We are a diverse community of immigrants and the descendants of immigrants, three and one-half million strong, who have come from throughout the Arab world. We are Syrians, Lebanese, Egyptians, Palestinians, Iraqis, Jordanians, and Yemenis – from North Africa to Southwest Asia. We are Christians and Muslims.

Arab Americans’ history illustrates how the immigrant experience has shaped the United States. We are part of the American success story, showing what can be achieved when an ethnic constituency becomes fully engaged in the political and economic life of this country.

Since the first wave of immigrants arrived here more than century...

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Fayrouz Saad: Special Assistant, Office of Director for CRCL at DHS

Posted by on December 02, 2009 in Blog
Arab American community activist and public servant Fayrouz Saad is moving on from her position as Civic Engagement Coordinator at the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS) and the National Network for Arab American Communities (NNAAC), to assume the position of Special Assistant in the Office of the Director for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties at the Department of Homeland Security.
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Amir Omar: City Councilman, Richardson Texas

Posted by on October 20, 2009 in Blog

Of Palestinian and Iranian decent, Republican Amir Omar became the first Muslim to be elected to the Richardson, Texas City Council last May. Omar earned a victory over incumbent Dennis Stewart to occupy the 7th seat of the Richardson City Council. This Texas A&M University graduate is an active member of his community and is involved in over ten local groups and associations. He is a proud member of the Richardson Regional Medical Center Foundation board and was honored in January with a Richardson Chamber of Commerce Volunteer Award. His achievements have brought a great sense of pride to both...

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Suzanne Sareini: A Voice for those Unheard

Posted by on July 27, 2009 in Blog

It has been said that no matter where a person goes, there is no place like home. Whether it is the family, friends or traditions, there is no telling of the comforts and joys that a person’s home has to offer, and nobody knows these simple pleasures better than Dearborn City Councilwoman Suzanne Sareini. A life time resident of Dearborn, Michigan, Sareini’s public service began by spending time in her parent’s restaurant. “Their restaurant quickly became a place for members of the community to gather, and a place to help new Americans get on their feet.” Sareini recalls....

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Nick Kahl: Home Is Where the Vote Is

Posted by on October 30, 2008 in Blog

Having spent his adult life volunteering for candidates within the Democratic Party, Nick Kahl decided “it was about time [he] ran, instead of working for candidates who didn’t fully represent the interests of [his] district.” Currently, Kahl is a Precinct Committee Person and Recording Secretary of the Mulnomah County Democratic Party in Oregon and his expansive political background makes him more than qualified to take on the big issues.  Born and raised in East County, Kahl has a deep connection to his hometown and an unwavering commitment to its residents. While he realizes that his district has been held by...

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