Featured Stories

This section of The.Ismaili/USA features important stories and information.

Rozina Piredina receiving an award from Ali Sajjad Taj, Mayor of Artesia, California.
Rozina Piredina receiving an award from Ali Sajjad Taj, Mayor of Artesia, California.
“Be inspired, Get inspired and Stay Inspired!” Four Trailblazing Women Entrepreneurs
“Be inspired, Get inspired and Stay Inspired!” Four Trailblazing Women Entrepreneurs
21 September 2019

Four women, three businesses, an inspiration to all. We look at these entrepreneurs who all started at a young age, from retail fashion accessories to merchant services, cosmetology, and hairdressing. From innovation to entering a field eons old, they found their niche and a way to be successful.

Nadia Hasham.
Nadia Hasham.
Women in Public Service
Women in Public Service
21 September 2019

From working on programs promoting the rights of vulnerable children following natural disasters, to strengthening civil society, and coordinating rapid response for emergency relief, the women profiled here are on a mission to improve the quality of life of their community, especially those that are women. Through their work, they are involved in the complete cycle of empowerment for women – from access, to inclusion, and finally, a seat at the table. 

Shirin Lutfeali at a Math Workshop in El Salvador.
Shirin Lutfeali at a Math Workshop in El Salvador.
Ismaili Women and Civil Society
Ismaili Women and Civil Society
14 September 2019

Ismaili women are key players in advancing and influencing civil society in diverse ways across the United States, and around the globe. The individuals described here are committed to helping people in need, working with a variety of organizations.

Ismaili Women in Leadership Roles: Closing Gender Gaps and Challenging Biases
Ismaili Women in Leadership Roles: Closing Gender Gaps and Challenging Biases
14 September 2019

It’s no secret that a gender leadership gap exists in many fields, including technology and business. According to Forbes magazine, in 2018, women represented 5% of Fortune 500 CEOs and held 24% of senior roles across the world. Despite setbacks, women leaders – many of whom come from the Jamat – are continuing to emerge in their respective fields, challenging systemic biases while also serving as role models for future generations.

Sophia Lalani, Advisor to Senator Cory Booker.
Sophia Lalani, Advisor to Senator Cory Booker.
Women Affecting Public Policy and Seeking Political Office
Women Affecting Public Policy and Seeking Political Office
14 September 2019

It’s no secret that service in pursuit of a dream is an integral characteristic of women entering politics. Sophia Lalani, Afshi Charania, and Anissa Karim are three women following distinct paths, who make it their mission to represent their communities through civic engagement.

The Petronas Office Towers in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, an AKAA prize-winner in 2004. The complex is at the forefront of technology, with a form derived from an Islamic pattern, and extensive use of local materials.
The Petronas Office Towers in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, an AKAA prize-winner in 2004. The complex is at the forefront of technology, with a form derived from an Islamic pattern, and extensive use of local materials.
Why Architecture Matters: Part One
Why Architecture Matters: Part One
11 September 2019

On September 13, 2019, Mawlana Hazar Imam will preside over the 14th cycle of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture. To mark this occasion, we explore some of the important questions surrounding the theme of architecture and the built environment.

The Great Mosque of Djenne, restored by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture's Historic Cities Programme, which also restored the Great Mosque in Mopti, Mali, and later, the Djinguereber Mosque.
The Great Mosque of Djenne, restored by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture's Historic Cities Programme, which also restored the Great Mosque in Mopti, Mali, and later, the Djinguereber Mosque.
Why Architecture Matters: Part Two
Why Architecture Matters: Part Two
11 September 2019

In the first part of this article, we explored definitions of architecture, and the complexities involved in designing buildings and spaces in the modern world. If buildings and cities do indeed ‘speak’ to us, then what should they speak of?

Shelmina participating in a meeting at the White House to advance equity for women and girls of color, December 2016.
Shelmina participating in a meeting at the White House to advance equity for women and girls of color, December 2016.
What it Takes to be an Effective Woman Leader
What it Takes to be an Effective Woman Leader
7 September 2019

Do you recognize your power and potential? Do you believe that it’s possible to thrive as a working mother and a successful business executive? Yes, it is. Despite evidence that gender diversity at the management level enhances a company’s performance, research shows that among the world’s largest 500 companies, only 10.9 percent of senior executives are women. Let’s stop the leaky leadership pipeline and accelerate women’s success into leadership roles. Below are some tips to help you excel as a leader:

Illustration of an Artificial Intelligence brain.
Illustration of an Artificial Intelligence brain.
Artificial Intelligence: Will it Transform Civilization?
Artificial Intelligence: Will it Transform Civilization?
21 April 2019

“Just as electricity transformed almost everything 100 years ago, today I actually have a hard time thinking of an industry that I don’t think Artificial Intelligence will transform in the next several years.” states Andrew Ng, Chief Scientist at Baidu.

Women's flag football teams competing at the 2015 United States Ismaili Games held in Dallas, Texas.
Women's flag football teams competing at the 2015 United States Ismaili Games held in Dallas, Texas.
Sports As Recreation: More Than Just Exercise
Sports As Recreation: More Than Just Exercise
19 April 2019

Sports have been part of the human experience since history has been recorded, as far back as Sumerian times (4000 BCE), and ancient Egypt. They were generally associated with religion, making sports a sacred activity, with such events being consecrated to the gods. In those times, sports included wrestling and archery, and Zen Buddhism was the foundation for the martial arts, requiring meditation and intense concentration.

Afshi Charania
Afshi Charania
On Women’s Day 2019, A Look at American Ismaili Women in Leadership
On Women’s Day 2019, A Look at American Ismaili Women in Leadership
7 March 2019

Four Definitions of Success, One Message from Ismaili Women Leaders: Your Story is Your Own.

Ismaili women in America fit no singular mould. But in interviews with four women leaders, one key aspect shines through: Ismaili women are breaking new grounds and setting bars extremely high, equipped with education, critical thinking, humility, and a thirst for excellence.

State Representative Safiya Wazir with US Senator Maggie Hassan. Photo: Becky Field.
State Representative Safiya Wazir with US Senator Maggie Hassan. Photo: Becky Field.
The Journey from a Refugee to a State Legislator
The Journey from a Refugee to a State Legislator
9 February 2019

At just six years old, Safiya Wazir fled from Afghanistan as a refugee of the civil war. Wazir lived in Uzbekistan for a decade before arriving in the USA as a high school student. At the age of 16, she had to master a new language, and become familiar with a new culture - and lots of snow.

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