Imam Latif’s exceptional dedication and ability to cross interfaith and cultural lines on a daily basis brought him recognition throughout the city, so much so that in 2007 Mayor Michael Bloomberg nominated Imam Latif to become the youngest chaplain in history of the New York City Police Department at the age of 24. Imam Latif has not only managed to solidify the basis of a strong Muslim community at NYU that seeks to emphasize inclusiveness and understanding of others without compromise, but has also worked tirelessly to foster dialogue with people of other faiths in order to clarify misconceptions and encourage mutual education. Through his work Imam Latif has demonstrated not only an exceptional dedication to gaining and disseminating religious knowledge and values, but has begun to carve out a much-needed space for young American Muslims to celebrate their unique identity and have their voices heard in the larger public sphere.
He is a sought after speaker, having lectured throughout the United States and in various parts of the world and has been quoted, featured and appeared in numerous media outlets including BBC, NPR, CNN, the NY Times, Katie Couric New York Magazine, The Colbert Report, Newsweek,Time Magazine, BET and GEO TV. Amongst many awards and distinctions for leadership and community service over the last few years, Imam Latif has been named a Global Interfaith Visionary by the United Nations Temple of Understanding (2010), one of 100 NYC Luminaries by the New York Public Library (2011) and one of the 500 most influential Muslims in the world by Georgetown University’s Prince Alwaleed Bin Talaal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding and The Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre for the last two years (2009 & 2010).
Sumaiyah Ahmed graduated from NYU (’02) with a major in Mathematics and a minor in Computer Science. Since receiving her degree, Sumaiyah has worked at a clinical research facility, A&E and Fitch Ratings. Currently, she is also working towards becoming a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries.
Before becoming the Director of Alumni Relations at the Islamic Center, Sumaiyah was an active member of the community as an undergraduate. Beginning with event planning in her freshman year and culminating with seats on the board during her junior and senior years, she endeavored to create a community devoted to all aspects of life: social, intellectual and religious. She uses her position in alumni relations to ensure that those who leave the university years behind them, don’t have to leave the community they have striven to create behind as well. Her hope is to continue to grow the alumni network into a global presence that offers members of the IC a community in every corner of the globe.
Aside from her work with the Islamic Center Alumni Association, Sumaiyah is also the co-founder of the popular h(alal)-train dining event, and regularly volunteers for local organizations.
Umer currently volunteers on the IT staff of Islamic Circle of North America. In this capacity, he has an influential role in the direction that ICNA takes to bolster its presence across the internet. Umer also holds the co-lead position on ICNA’s twitter team and works as an advisor on its Social Media team. Umer helped in launching the Muslims Pitch In project that brings together Muslim individuals for various volunteer opportunities throughout the community. Umer is also part of the ICNA Back to School giveaway campaign, which aims to provide thousands of free back packs and school supplies to kids in need across the country this year.
Umer is an active community member at the Islamic Center of NYU. He has helped in various aspects of planning and execution of events. He attends classes and other community events as well. In his current capacity, Umer is helping to manage the NYC Ramadan site for the IC.