Shaheen Bharde has been a member of the Islamic Speakers Bureau since 2012. Shaheen has also been involved with volunteering at the Roswell Community Masjid for over 10 years. She currently chairs the Public Relations Committee and works with many local businesses and interfaith organizations to build bridges with the larger community. Shaheen also serves on the Governing Board at North Fulton Community Charities heading their advocacy. She serves on the faith advisory board for Fulton County Schools, as well as on the Pastoral Advisory Committee at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Shaheen has been featured in ISB’s Women’s History month in 2014 and recognized in 40 under 40 Georgia Muslims in 2016.
Al-Hajj Reche′ Tariq Abdul-Haqq is an American Muslim who promotes interfaith and intercultural understanding. He is a leadership consultant with extensive business experience in the pharmaceuticals industry. Tariq graduated from Duke University with a BA degree in History. He joined Islamic Speakers Bureau in 2015 and was honored with the ISB Speaker of the Year Award in 2017. He is a devoted father and husband in a loving family and he volunteers with several charitable causes. Favorite quote: “It is better to aim high and fail than to succeed at a lower level” – Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. Daily mantra: “Don’t count the days; make the days count!” – Muhammad Ali.
Amin Tomeh is a long-time speaker, trainer, and board member of ISB Atlanta. In 2009, he was named Speaker of the Year and in 2014 was named one of the 100 Influential Georgia Muslims. He is a founding member and trainer of the Interfaith Speakers Network (ISN). In 2016, Amin was recognized as a Daily Point of Light for his ISB Work. He is a registered Professional Engineer, a certified Project Management Professional, and was granted the Diplomate in Geotechnical Engineering (D. GE) Certification by the Academy of Geo-Professionals in 2015.
Basma is married to Emad Hamid, and they are blessed with 3 children and 3 grandchildren. She was born in Moscow and raised in her native Egypt.
Basma earned a B.S. degree with honors in Allied Health Psychology from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA. She worked as an Arabic teacher for 10 years until she resigned in order to host and care for her late mother who had special needs. She is a volunteer ISB Speaker and enjoys interior design, reading and writing.
Benjamin Kweskin is proudly the only Jewish member of the Islamic Speakers Bureau in Atlanta. Kweskin works towards bringing together Jewish and Muslim communities and has been researching, writing, traveling, and presenting his work throughout the world for two decades. He has traveled extensively throughout the Middle East and North Africa and lived in Israel/Palestine and the Kurdistan Region of Northern Iraq. With Ph.D coursework in Political Science/Middle East Studies, Kweskin and was a professor at GA State Univ. He remains dedicated to impressing Metro Atlanta community the necessity for Jewish-Muslim relations and seeks to show that Islamophobia and anti-Semitism are two different sides of the same coin. He speaks Hebrew, Arabic, and Kurdish at various levels.
Emad is married to Basma Elashker, and they are blessed with 3 children and 3 grandchildren. He was born and raised in Boston, then lived in his native Egypt from fourth grade through high school.
Emad earned a B.S. in Information Systems Management from the University of Maryland and an M.S. in Technology Management from Mercer University. He works as an IT Manager at Mar-Jac Poultry in Gainesville, GA and enjoys volunteering with youth groups and in ISB speaking engagements.
Faraz Iqbal is a certified speaker of the Islamic Speakers Bureau and currently serves on the Board. He has a Bachelor’s degree from Pace University and an MBA from Fairfield University. Faraz currently serves as the COO of Naranga, a technology solution provider in the Franchise space. He has been involved with various non-profit initiatives at the local and national levels with a focus on youth work for over 25 years. Faraz was involved with the chartering of Young Muslims and has served as its Board Chairman. He has been teaching at the Roswell Community Masjid for 10 years and is a former Board Member. He is married with 4 kids, a cat and lives in Tucker, Georgia.
Nabile Safdar has been active in interfaith work since attending a Catholic High School next to a Jewish Community Center, bringing together teens from these faith traditions for dialogue. This work continued for years in Maryland as one of the speakers and presidents of the Baltimore Interfaith Outreach Council, based at the Islamic Society of Baltimore. He joined ISB Atlanta in 2014 as a speaker, board member, and content author. With a special interest in the intersection of healthcare with his Master’s thesis being an “Exploratory Assessment of the Beliefs of Maryland’s Muslims Regarding their Health Needs and Barriers to Access.” He is currently the Vice President of the Islamic Medical Association of North America, the oldest and largest organization of Muslim physicians in the United States.
Noor has been a certified speaker with the ISB for over 10 years. She led new speaker’s training, certified and mentored new members to the organization. She took the lead on several ISB projects, the latest was the Interfaith Speakers Network of Atlanta. Noor delivered scores of presentations and cultural competency seminars and was named the Speaker of the Year for 2013. An educator by profession, and currently a graduate student at GSU, Noor believes conversation is the only road towards more understanding and harmony between people of different faiths and backgrounds. Besides prayer, Noor pursues spirituality through playing the piano, running, carpentry, and painting. Noor is a wife and a mother of two amazing boys.
Rabeea Janjua balances her professional passion as an ophthalmologist, commitment to raising children with a strong American Muslim identity, and dedication to strengthening Muslim organizations through volunteerism. She has been a speaker with ISB Atlanta since moving to the Atlanta area in 2014, with a strong interest in developing cultural competency for health care workers through ISB presentations. In her spare time, she enjoys kickboxing and riding her bike.
Reem Faruqi is the Communications Director of the Islamic Speakers Bureau of Atlanta. She schedules presentations for the ISB and creates content for monthly newsletters. Reem was an ISB Member of the Year for 2015. She is also a certified speaker and enjoys presenting the ISB Children’s Program. Reem holds a masters degree in Early Childhood Education from Georgia State University and worked as a teacher for Fulton County Schools. Currently, Reem is a children’s book author of Lailah’s Lunchbox and family photographer. She lives with her husband and three daughters in Atlanta.
Salma Stoman has been a certified speaker with the ISB since 2008 and earned the ISB Speaker of the Year Award in 2011. She tailors each presentation to her audiences and has presents often in educational and religious institutions. She believes strongly in the power of knowledge, truth, and in giving back to the community. She is active with youth organizations and serves on several academic and religious committees. She holds a Pharm.D from Mercer University College of Pharmacy and works as a pharmacist.
Sophia Jetpuri-Naviwala, an educator for 14 years, now joins the Islamic Speakers Bureau, with aims to build bridges and cultivate understanding. Sophia brings two years of international experience working with interfaith programs, in which he has customized, developed and curated outreach and awareness programs. Sophia currently works to mentor principals and teachers, providing strategies for school improvement and student success. She holds double masters in Education and Leadership, along Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Texas at Dallas. She resides in Atlanta with her four children, with whom she hopes to raise civic awareness and foster positive global awareness.
Sara Khalid became a certified speaker for the ISB in 2017 and has been an active participant in ISB engagements since. Sara is a marketing and services professional. Her career spans working for the Fintech industry in the areas of product marketing, strategy and small business consulting. Sara has worked as Director Product Marketing at First Data. She received her Master’s in Business Administration from Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS).
Sara currently focuses on consulting, volunteering, community work and fitness. She enjoys hiking and reading in her free time.
She lives with her husband Muzammil, son and 2 daughters in Marietta, GA.
When I joined the Islamic Speakers Bureau in 2016, I was looking for ways to answer questions about Islam and Muslims in America in an effective, impactful way. During my time with the ISB one of the most rewarding ways I have been able to do this is by taking part in our Coffee with a Muslim initiative. Monthly we hold an event at a coffee shop, café, etc. inviting anyone who
would like to meet a Muslim or anyone who may have questions about Islam and American Muslims to come and join us for coffee and to have a conversation in a relaxed setting. These events have proven to be great opportunities to make meaningful connections and have generated some wonderful conversations. I have worked as a paralegal for the last seventeen years in the Atlanta area. When I am not working I am spending time with family and friends, reading, and volunteering. I live in
Cumming with my husband, two daughters and one very loved Shih Tzu.
Pathways is the annual journal for Diocese of Atlanta, the Episcopal Church in Middle and North Georgia. Bishop Robert C. Wright and Soumaya Khalifa sat down with Pathways for an honest conversation about interfaith understanding. You can read the...
Georgia Public Broadcasting interviewed ISB Executive Director Soumaya Khalifa about Ramadan. To find out more about Ramadan, the history behind it, and what compels Muslims everywhere to devote themselves to an entire month of fasting and prayer click here...