From Dr. Debbie Almontaser - MCN Board Chair <[email protected]>
Subject Why the Muslim Community Network Matters to Me
Date November 17, 2022 3:19 PM
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Dear John,

I am so proud of where the Muslim Community Network has arrived today. The journey started 20 years ago for a handful of community activists like myself and my distinguished peers who saw the non-existent civic organizations that were needed to support the Muslim community in the aftermath of 9/11. We mobilized quickly to establish ourselves and became a consultative body for policymakers to reach and meet the needs of our community.

We saw some dark days when we fought against Islamophobia; the unlawful surveillance of our communities and houses of worship; all the while trying to make our city more inclusive by ensuring our children can practice their faith. I remain eternally grateful for all of our allies in this process. We worked out of the Judson Memorial Church until 2018. So many of our interfaith allies stood by us while we organized. Mashallah, today, there are more than 35 Muslim-serving nonprofit organizations working on issues of all kinds, from domestic violence to senior services, to advocacy, and community development. MCN is the convenor for these organizations through the Muslim Stakeholder Roundtable.

MCN remains close to my heart because its mandate is to develop the next generation of Muslim American leaders so we can shape the narrative of our future. That is why we focused on Muslim youth from the very beginning, to provide them with a platform from which they can explore their civic leadership through the lens of their faith. I am so proud of our achievements and responsiveness to the needs of our community. I am particularly proud of the fact that MCN also strives to create an inclusive space for ourselves to ensure we're all involved in this process of shaping the narrative.

I am excited about all the future prospects of MCN to grow and make a permanent home for ourselves in New York City. I am honored to be a part of this journey and I urge you to be a part of this journey and celebrate with us on Tuesday, November 22nd, 2022 at the Midtown Hilton, as we unveil the next chapter of our journey. But your tickets today! I look forward to celebrating with you.

Dr. Debbie Almontaser

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