Dr. Hamid Rezapour – President
Dr. Rezapour has operated dental practices in the Bay Area for the past twenty five years. He holds an MBA degree from the University of Berkeley Haas School of Business and Columbia University in New York. He has been involved with angel investment groups since 2000 and has been at the founder’s level of several startups while serving on the board of several private and venture capital backed companies. He is also the founder and CEO of Vertical Ventures, a private equity investment firm in the Bay Area.
Dr. Rezapour is the founder of the Islamic Scholarship Fund, the largest scholarship program of its kind in the nation. He is also one of the founders of the Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California and has been an active member of the Muslim community for the past 30 years.
Salman Ravala, Esq.
M. Salman Ravala is an attorney, arbitrator, and mediator in New York City. He is the Founder of Dollar-A-Day Scholarship Fund, Member of the Board of Trustees at Scholarship America, and leads a variety of Access to Justice and Access to Higher Education initiatives around the United States and globally. He is a Life Fellow at the New York Bar Foundation and teaches at the New York Law School.
A former Visiting Legal Scholar at the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs, Mr. Ravala most recently served as the Ariane de Rothschild fellow for Dialogue and Social Entrepreneurship, a program held in partnership with Columbia Business School and Cambridge University. Ravala’s civic engagement and community service have been recognized with the American Red Cross Distinguished Service Award, the President’s Call to Service Award and an invitation to speak at the White House. His long term vision is to decrease the illiteracy rate in Muslim majority countries as well as throughout America as he believes that education leads to change, hope, progress, and opportunity.
Dr. Dalia Fahmy
Dr. Dalia Fahmy is an assistant professor of Political Science at Long Island University where she teachers courses on US foreign Policy, World Politics, International Relations, Causes of War, and Politics of the Middle East. Dr. Fahmy’s current research looks at the changing role of Islamists in the democratic future of the Middle East.
Dr. Fahmy has two books in the works that look at the future of political Islam and the role of liberalism in the Middle East. She has published several articles in academic journals focusing on democratization and most recently on the affects of Islamophobia on US foreign policy. She has been interviewed by and written opeds in various media outlets including ABC, CNBC, CNN, MSNBC, the Huffington Post, and appears often on Aljazeera.
Dr. Fahmy has won several academic awards and fellowships for her research. In 2014, Dr. Fahmy was one of the recipients of the prestigious Kleigman Prize in Political Science. And this year was awarded the Newton Prize for excellence. She is also a senior fellow at the Center for Global Policy.
Ismail Mahomed is a Managing Director at a successful Information Technology company based in San Ramon, CA. Born and raised in South Africa, he holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg and has been a Bay Area resident since 1987. He’s an advisory board member of IdeaShepherdvc, an Incubator based in San Ramon, that provides angel funding and co-development opportunities for startups. He’s also currently on the board of the San Ramon Islamic Center that addresses the needs of the Muslim community in the Tri-Valley area, and has served as President and Vice President.