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Farhan Latif - Interim Executive Director View Full-Size

Farhan Latif - Interim Executive Director

Farhan Latif is currently serving as Interim Executive Director at ISPU. He assumed this leadership role after serving as the Chief Operating Officer & Director of Policy Impact, a position where he provided focus to the Institute’s strategy, further strengthened its impact in policy circles, and expanded support and awareness of its research. Mr. Latif previously served as a director in the Office of Institutional Advancement at the University of Michigan - Dearborn, where he led efforts to build a culture of philanthropy and engagement. As a social entrepreneur and non-profit strategist, he founded Strategic Inspirations, a consulting firm focused on building the capacity of non-profit organizations and scaling for greater social impact.
Mr. Latif holds a BBA in Business Management and Marketing, and has completed graduate work in non-profit management at the University of Michigan Dearborn. He received an M.A. from Harvard University, having completed a specialized interdisciplinary program with graduate coursework at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard Business School and Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Alejandro Beutel - Policy and Research Engagement Fellow View Full-Size

Alejandro Beutel - Policy and Research Engagement Fellow

Alejandro Beutel is ISPU's Policy and Research Engagement Fellow. In this capacity he will be contributing to research management, spearhead outreach to policy stakeholders in Washington, D.C., and actively contribute to the growth and development of ISPU's 2050 Project. Prior to joining ISPU Mr. Beutel served as a research consultant to several think-tanks, policy advocacy non-profits, and corporate clients. From 2009 to 2012 he was the Government and Policy Analyst at the Washington, D.C. office of the Muslim Public Affairs Council where he built strategic relationships with government agencies and authored several policy and issue publications in areas such as national security, immigration reform, and religious liberty. He has a Master of Public Policy from University of Maryland, College Park.

Zahra Jamal - Fellow View Full-Size

Zahra Jamal - Fellow

Dr. Zahra N. Jamal is Fellow and Former Assistant Director of the Center for the Study of American Muslims at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, the Mellon Post-Doctoral Fellow on International Women's Rights at the University of Chicago, Director of Strategy and Research of the Isma’ili Tariqah and Religious Education Board USA. She was previously on the faculty at Harvard, MIT, and Michigan State University (MSU), and was also the Program Director of Central Asia and International Development at MSU. Dr. Jamal serves as an ethnographic consultant to the U.S. Department of State, Aspen Institute, the Swiss Development Cooperation, the Aga Khan Development Network, and USAID for projects on conflict resolution, gender equity, human rights, and civic engagement among Muslim communities in North America, Europe, and Central Asia. Her most extensive field research is on Muslim American philanthropy and voluntarism, which has become a major million dollar effort spearheaded by the Aspen Institute and Muslim Advocates. She has published in academic venues and in the Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, and I Speak for Myself. She received an M.A. and Ph.D. in Social Anthropology and Middle Eastern Studies from Harvard University, and a double B.A. in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies and in Slavic Studies from Rice University.

Hamada Hamid - Senior Research Fellow View Full-Size

Hamada Hamid - Senior Research Fellow

Hamada Hamid is a Senior Research Fellow and Former Director of the Center for Global Health at ISPU. He is also a Clinical Instructor in the Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry at Yale University. Dr. Hamid completed a dual residency in neurology and psychiatry and a Masters in Global Public Health at New York University, followed by a clinical research fellowship in epilepsy at Yale University. Dr. Hamid has published several articles and book chapters on neuropsychiatric illness, mental health policy in the Middle East, and the role of culture in mental illness across a diverse spectrum of Muslim populations. He is also the founding and current managing editor of the Journal of Muslim Mental Health. Dr. Hamid has served on the boards of Tamkeen, an Arab American social service agency, Muslim Mental Health, Inc., Muslim Family Services, and he is an affiliated faculty member for the Council of Middle East Studies at Yale University. Dr. Hamid was a Fulbright Fellow in Jordan (2002-3) and his essay "Developing Iraq's National Mental Health Policy" was awarded NYU's Outstanding Paper in Global Public Health Award. Dr Hamid received his medical degree from the School of Medicine at Michigan State University.

Nadia Ahmed - Finance Director View Full-Size

Nadia Ahmed - Finance Director

Nadia Ahmed is the Finance Director at ISPU. She had previously served as the Business Manager, Board Treasurer, and Finance Committee Chair for Friends School in Detroit, a nonprofit private elementary school. Before that, Ahmed had worked for over 11 years in the public accounting field as an international tax consultant for Ernst & Young in Detroit and Arthur Anderson in Chicago and New York. She has a Bachelors degree in Accounting from DePaul University and a Masters degree in Non-Profit Management.

Iffa Kazi - Development Associate View Full-Size

Iffa Kazi - Development Associate

Iffa Kazi is the Development Associate at ISPU.  Prior to joining our team, Ms. Kazi worked in the fields of strategic planning, performance analysis, and non-profit development and project management. She is a proven community organizer and was at the top of her class at the Michigan Development Institute, a program to cultivate development officers.  Ms. Kazi brings years of experience in the areas of community and non-profit event organizing to ISPU.  She also spends time volunteering in her local community as a youth mentor and program organizer. Ms. Kazi holds a BA in Economics from UM-Dearborn where she was the recipient of numerous academic and leadership awards.  She is currently pursuing graduate work in Accounting at Wayne State University.

Jessica Strachan - Communication Associate View Full-Size

Jessica Strachan - Communication Associate

Jessica Strachan is Communication Associate at ISPU where she manages multimedia communications, including online audience engagement, ISPU's publications, external outreach, photography and design, and social media strategy. Strachan previously worked as a Detroit-area journalist and has worked for MLive, AOL and other media organizations. Her background includes human rights organizing, national speaking engagements and leading workshops about leveraging media for social change, and award-winning nonprofit event planning and fundraising. Strachan earned her BA in Communications and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Michigan-Dearborn and her MA in Social Sciences - specializing in Global Studies - from the University of Michigan-Flint. Strachan also completed a development internship at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where she did research on philanthropy among college-aged students, studied at the Universidad of Salamanca in Spain, and conducted graduate research at Alliance University in Bangalore, India.

Butheina Hamdah - Leadership Assistant View Full-Size

Butheina Hamdah - Leadership Assistant

Butheina Hamdah is a Leadership Assistant at ISPU where she provides executive assistance to the ISPU Chief Operating Officer and the Chairman of the Board of Directors on strategic initiatives. She comes from a wide background of community organizing, fundraising and youth mentorship in Northwest Ohio and Southeastern Michigan. Hamdah holds a B.A. in Political Science and an M.A. in Political Science with a concentration in International Relations at the University of Toledo.

Aamina Ahmed - Administrative Assistant View Full-Size

Aamina Ahmed - Administrative Assistant

Aamina Ahmed provides administrative support to ISPU and is also involved with various non profits in the metro Detroit area. She is currently on the Board of Plymouth Canton Citizens for Diversity and Inclusion and a member of the Canton Response to Hate Crime Coalition. Ms. Ahmed was the recipient of a prestigious Poynter Institute Fellowship as part of a model national project on multicultural communication. She has completed graduate work in Molecular Evolution and Genetics.

Emily France - Administrative Assistant View Full-Size

Emily France - Administrative Assistant

Emily France is Administrative Assistant at ISPU where she provides administrative and operating support to the development team. France previously taught at an International Baccalaureate school in Dakar, Senegal. Before that, she was a core organizer in a startup initiative that aimed to create a shared workspace for over 30 non-profits in Denver, CO. She has experience working with a number of non-profit organizations focused on various domestic and international issues, including global trend forecasting, family health, and youth empowerment. France completed her B.A. in French Language & Literature at Kalamazoo College and her M.A. in International Human Rights with a concentration in International Law and Administration at the University of Denver.

Jelena Jankovic - Graduate Research Intern, Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies View Full-Size

Jelena Jankovic - Graduate Research Intern, Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies

Jelena Jankovic is a Graduate Research Intern at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding. She has worked for the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, the People's Office of the President of the Republic of Serbia, and Serbia’s Ministry of Youth and Sport prior to joining the private sector as an external communication and CSR officer. She gained professional experience in the public, private and non-profit sector. Jelena is a graduate student at the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame. She holds an M.A. in strategies and methods of nonviolent social change and an undergraduate degree in special education and rehabilitation from the University of Belgrade. She also holds a diploma in work with vulnerable groups and the principles of non-discrimination from the OSCE Mission in Serbia that was building on the certified Training of Trainers in the School for Human Rights organized by the Belgrade Center for Human Rights.

Zara Akhter - Development and Events Intern View Full-Size

Zara Akhter - Development and Events Intern

Zara Akhter is the Development and Events Intern at ISPU where she assists with event coordination and development activities, including community engagement efforts, research dissemination events and the annual dinner. She also founded an after-school tutoring program at Crescent Academy International in Canton and serves her local community by volunteering as an event organizer. Akhter is currently enrolled in Wayne State University’s School of Business Administration and B Start program.

Alyssa Jeffries - Web and Design Intern View Full-Size

Alyssa Jeffries - Web and Design Intern

Alyssa Jeffries is the Website and Design Intern at ISPU where she engages in social media, search engine optimization, digital branding, website design, and website development. She has experience in social media, web coding, web programming, and graphic design.  Jeffries earned her B.A. in Sociology and Women’s Studies at University of New Hampshire, and an E-Marketing Certificate at Washtenaw Community College. Currently, she is pursuing a Web Technology Certificate at Washtenaw Community College. 

Hassan Jibril - Research and Development Intern View Full-Size

Hassan Jibril - Research and Development Intern

Hassan Jibril is a Research and Development Intern at ISPU where he generates data visualizations for research projects, conducts demographic research and performs data analysis for ISPU digital communications. Jibril volunteers as a youth mentor in his local community and is pursuing his B.S. in Actuarial Science from the University of Michigan. 

Syed Mannan - Research Intern View Full-Size

Syed Mannan - Research Intern

Syed Mannan is a Research Intern at ISPU, where he helps research and analyze legislation for ISPU's research projects. Mannan has previously interned for political and humanitarian non-for-profit organizations as well as for a public affairs consulting firm. He is currently working towards his B.A. in Political Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Saim Raza - Research Intern View Full-Size

Saim Raza - Research Intern

Saim Raza is a Research Intern at ISPU where he supports various initiatives across the organization.  Raza previously interned with the Michigan Muslim Community Council (MMCC) and wrote articles for the nationally-syndicated Muslim Observer. Raza was recently admitted into Harvard College and will pursue an A.B. in Government.







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