Editorial Team

Agnieszka Karoluk – Chief Editor
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Agnieszka is the Senior Communications Coordinator at CAIR-Chicago. Agnieszka Karoluk graduated from DePaul University with a B.A. in Geography and spent one year studying at the New School University in New York. She previously has worked in the Islamic World Studies department at DePaul as an administrative assistant and interned at CAIR Chicago’s Communications department. Agnieszka has been a regular contributor and editor for the New School Free Press, DePaulia and more recently The Chicago Monitor. In 2011 Agnieszka traveled to India to conduct research on people’s movements in Mumbai and has taken this research to various conference presentations in Chicago and abroad. In her free time she enjoys attending lectures, concerts and movies.

 

Browse our team of 74 columnists below:

Columnists

ak_monitorAgnieszka Karoluk
Agnieszka is the Senior Communications Coordinator at CAIR-Chicago. She graduated from DePaul University with a B.A. in Geography and spent one year studying at the New School University in New York.

Alishba Malik
Alishba is currently a student at Northeastern University for Justice Studies with a minor in Psychology. She hopes to attend law school in the future.

Ammad Rafiqi
Ammad currently attends University at Buffalo, The State University of New York. He wants to look at the types of discrimination facing Muslims and help with immigration and citizenship issues.

Bill Chambers
Bill is a full-time activist with a long history of civil rights, anti-racism, anti-war, Irish Republican, and Palestine solidarity work. His current passions are taking courses in Islamic and inter-religious studies and organizing Palestine solidarity events.

Hadeel Hejja
Hadeel is a student at DePaul University studying biological sciences. In her future career she wishes to go into speech pathology and freelance journalism.

Sabah Adil
Sabah is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Biology at DePaul University. After completing her degree, she plans to attend medical school and do volunteer work in her field.

Samia Shameem
Samia is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Samia is an aspiring journalist and hopes to one day help educate the masses.

Susy Palmer
Susy is a recent graduate of Loyola University in Political science. She hopes to apply her interest in political science and communications in the real-world.

Sami Kishawi
Sami serves on the executive committee of American Muslims for Palestine in Chicago. Sami visited Gaza City and used his blog, “Sixteen Minutes to Palestine”, to report extensively about everyday living in the occupied territories.

Alaa Saleh
Alaa attends DePaul University in Chicago for Urban Planning. She hopes to promote a better image of Muslims everywhere.

Aseal Tineh
Aseal is at the University of Chicago and is majoring in both public policy and political science and minoring in human rights. She has previously served as an extern for the Regional Transportation Authority and is an Illinois State Scholar.

Sarah Goomar
Sarah is a student at the University of Michigan and plans to attend law school upon graduation. She is involved with the Amnesty International and STAND chapters at her school.

Talha Ahmad
Talha is currently taking a gap year from his graduate studies at the University of Virginia where he is studying Architectural History & Theory. He hopes to gain journalistic experience through Chicago Monitor.

Milos Markicevic
Milos recently completed his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science with a minor in Journalism at DePaul University. He is a contributing writer and photographer for the music blog Brooklyn Vegan Chicago.

Walid Sankari
Walid is studying Philosophy and Business Management at Loyola University of Chicago. He hopes to gain further awareness about the crisis in Syria and aid the Chicago Muslim community.

Kevin Vodak
Kevin Vodak is the Litigation Director at CAIR-Chicago. Kevin has a Juris Doctor degree from DePaul University College of Law and a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from North Central College. Outside of his work in private law firms, Kevin has works with the National Lawyers Guild.

Hiba Ahmed
Hiba is currently at Knox College majoring in International Relations and minoring in Religious Studies. She hopes to pursue a career in policy and government affairs.

Braden Carkhuff
Braden earned a B.A. in German and English writing and is currently entering his second year at Hamline University School of Law. Braden hopes to ultimately work as a policy maker in health law or civil rights.

Joshua Rivera
Joshua is currently a student at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, majoring in political science and international studies. He was previously a coach and event coordinator for the Chicago debate league, and is also a national champion of college parliamentary debate.

Sara Abdeljalil
Sara is dual enrolled in the Aqsa School and Joliet Junior College and will be graduating after her third year of high school in the spring of 2014. She hopes to attend college to study economics.

Sony Kassam
Sony is currently a student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, majoring in Broadcast Journalism and Political Science. She has previously written for the Chicago Tribune’s high school paper, The Mash.

Nathaniel Van Wienen
Nathaniel is currently a student at Carleton College in Minnesota, majoring in Religion with a French and Francophone Studies minor. He studied abroad in Belgium where he interned with an anti-racism agency where he defended rights in Belgium’s Muslim community.

Anzur Ismail
Anzur is currently entering her final year of law school at The John Marshall Law School in Chicago. She hopes to ultimately work in the public interest sector to help the Muslim community and immigrants.

Ibrahim Al-Hajiby
Ibrahim is an international student studying International Relations and Business at Augsburg College in Minnesota. Ibrahim served as a Nobel Peace Prize Forum Intern for Tawakkol Karman earlier this year, acting as her direct assistant and translator.

Dartunorro Clark
Dartunorro recently graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a degree in Political Science and Communications, and in the fall will be attending Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Dartunorro is a McKelvie Scholar, the recipient of the CME Group Mayoral Award and is on the Dean’s List.

David C. Blount
David is a graduate from Loyola University of Chicago where he majored in Sociology and International Studies with a minor in Urban and Black World Studies. He has studied abroad in China and Tunisia.

Maryam Arain
Maryam graduated from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies with a Master’s in Post/Colonial Studies. She is also a graduate of Dartmouth College, where she studied History modified with African and African American Studies with a minor in Gender Studies.

Rhys Leahy
Rhys recently graduated from York Community High School and in the fall will begin pursuing a bachelor’s in international studies at American University in Washington, D.C. She is a dual citizen of the United States and Ireland, and has lived in Kazan, Russia.

Yasmina Blackburn
Yasmina is a board member of MyJihad, Inc., where she is the official Writer and Correspondent.

Nadia Atassi
Nadia is currently a student at Valparaiso University in Indiana, majoring in English and minoring in International Relations. Nadia hopes to attend law school and work in civil rights in the future.

Shaiesha Moore
Shaiesha is currently a student at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., majoring in Middle East Regional Studies with a concentration in Democracy, and minoring in Christian-Muslim understanding. In the fall, Shai will be studying Arabic in Amman, Jordan, and in preparation hopes to learn more about Islam.

Ankur Thakkar
Ankur has a bachelor’s degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences and History and is currently enrolled in law school at Cleveland Marshall. He hopes to become an advocate and voice for under-served communities.

Peter Brierton
Peter is currently attending the Chicago-Kent College of Law. He hopes to practice labor and employment law and eventually run for public office.

Nicole Tewolde
Nicole earned a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from Florida International University and is currently entering her second year at Notre Dame Law School. With a passion for civil rights work, Nicole hopes for a career where the primary goal is protecting the rights of individuals.

Claudia V. Bertacchi
Claudia graduated from DePaul University in 2011 and is currently in her second year at Chicago-Kent College of Law where she is focusing on criminal law. Claudia hopes to become a successful criminal defense attorney and work with international criminal law in a foreign embassy.

Karim Merchant
Karim graduated with a degree in Political Science and Philosophy from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign and is currently entering his second year at Valparaiso University Law School. He is an active member of Valparaiso’s Trial Advocacy Team.

Noor Salahuddin
Noor graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2011 with a degree in English literature. Noor is interested in learning more about grant writing and hopes to write grant proposals this summer to various foundations and organizations that offer them.

Nasir Almasri
Nasir is a student at the Southern Illinois University and is majoring in Political Science and History. He hopes to get a PhD in Political Science or Historical Studies. He also wants to teach and to conduct research in his field.

Jacqueline Horn
Jacqueline graduated from Louisiana State University with a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in Philosophy. She is currently entering her second year at DePaul University College of Law. Jacqueline aspires to become a criminal defense attorney, but is also interested in civil rights, family law, and immigration and asylum law.

Amy Zaiter
Amy recently graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a major in English and a minor in Communications. She is greatly looking forward to working against bigotry with CAIR-Chicago. Amy is half Lebanese and speaks conversational Arabic.

Saleha Jabeen
Saleha is pursuing a M.A. in Theology at the Catholic Theological Union with a focus on inter-religious dialogue. She spent a semester as a Public Affairs and Civic Engagement Intern with the Muslim American Society in Chicago.

Ahmed Rehab
Ahmed Rehab is the Executive Director of CAIR-Chicago. Rehab is a regular contributor to the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Public Radio. He has been interviewed hundreds of times by newspapers, radio, and TV venues, both national and international. Rehab lectures at various University campuses in Chicago and around the nation.

Laith Saud
Laith is an instructor in the Islamic World Studies program at DePaul University. He is completing his doctorate at the University of Chicago in Contemporary Islamic Thought. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Islamic Law and Culture and a regular contributor to NPR.

Heather Elawawadh
Heather is a student at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She hopes to help eliminate discrimination towards Muslims and, more specifically, women who wear the hijab.

Khaled Zarzour
Khaled earned his B.B.A. from the Arab International University in Syria. He has also worked as a Communications Intern at CAIR-Chicago.

William von Schrader
William is currently attending DePaul University and majoring in political science. He previously interned for Karen Buck a member of parliament in the UK in 2011. He hopes to establish a career where he will do work that can truly better the world for everyone.

Uzma Mushtaq
Uzma graduated among the top of her class from East-West University in March 2011, double majoring in marketing and accounting. She is interested in world affairs, politics, religious studies, humanitarian causes and strongly supports education and activism.

Dima Ansari
Dima attends the University of Illinois at Chicago and will graduate with a Bachelors in English and a concentration in Media, Rhetorical, and Cultural Studies in December 2011. Dima completed and presented her Senior Thesis about the interrelationship of verbal, written, and body language between a tutor and a writer at UIC’s Writing Center.

Aaron Kearney
Aaron is a student at Loyola University majoring in Political Science and Journalism. He hopes to fight human rights violations across the world.

Brittany Moore
Brittany is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Marketing at Lewis University. She previously served as an Executive Management Assistant, Area Manager, and University Staff.

Scott C. Alexander
A Harvard graduate, Scott has earned a M.A. and Ph. D. in the history of religions, with a concentration in Islamic studies. He has taught courses on Islam at Columbia, Fordham, and Princeton University. He is a currently an Associate Professor of Islam at CTU in Chicago.

Matthew Barry
Matthew is attending Knot College, majoring in international relations. He received “Best Column” at the 2012 ICPA College Journalism Competition. Matthew hopes to gain more experience through professional research with a focus on government policy.

Haney Noureddin
Haney is attending the University of Illinois at Chicago for history. He has previously worked for Halal Farms USA and the U.S. Soccer Federation.

Tarek Khalil
Tarek has attended the John Marshall Law School and is currently a Law Clerk in Cook county.

Dasia Skinner
Dasia is a student at DePaul University and is currently an intern in the division of student affairs at her college.

Aymen Abdel Halim
Aymen is currently a graduate student in the Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts program at San Francisco State University. He recently co-authored a book chapter on the impact of TV news on the self-conception of Arab and Muslim youth.

Rabya Khan
Rabya Khan is a Staff Attorney at CAIR-Chicago. Rabya received her bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Chicago, and her Juris Doctorate from DePaul College of Law.

Mohammad Sagha
Mohammad is a graduate student at the University of Chicago for Middle Eastern studies. He has written for a number of publications, such as the Chicago Tribune, Foreign Policy, and Chief of Lights.

Naeem Vahora
Naeem graduated from DePaul University with a B.A. in Journalism and double minor in International Studies and Islamic World Studies. He is currently pursuing an M.A. in International studies at DePaul.

Isamar Mendoza
Isamar graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a degree in Psychology and English. Her professional goals are to go to graduate school and work in different countries.

Amy Brabec

Titilayo Rasaki

Dennis Melendez

Ann Santori

Maniza Azam

Joe Scarry

Hannah Khalid

Muhammad Shareef

Liz Dennis

Muhammad Akbar

Lily Herbert

Aakash Shah

Roya Arta

Naomi Schmidt