Steering Committee

CAMWL’s Steering Committee members for the 2016-2018 term are:

  • Aziza Hirsi
  • Fatema Dada
  • Hodan Ahmed
  • Imtenan Abd-El-Razik
  • May El-Abdallah
  • Nabila Qureshi
  • Natasha Persaud
  • Ruba Ali Al-Hassani
  • Sharifa Khan
  • Talia Joundi




Aziza Hirsi, is a lawyer practicing civil litigation, family and immigration law. She has significant experience working with newcomer, marginalized and vulnerable communities through her professional and volunteer work, and is interested in issues relating to discrimination, immigration reform, and matters that impact the Black and Muslim communities.

Hodan Ahmed, BA (UofT), M.A. (OISE) is a diaspora Somali Canadian with a focus on community researcher, public policy, leadership facilitation, and youth employment. She has over 9 years of international fieldwork, community development and youth advocate working with underserved and underemployed Black youth in Toronto. She tweets at @q_huda.

Imtenan Abd-El-Razik, is a refugee and immigration lawyer in Toronto. With Arabic fluency, her focus is on Middle East and North African refugee claims. In 2012, she worked in Cairo representing African refugees before the UNHCR. She also volunteers with the Human Rights Committee of the National Council of Canadian Muslims.

May El-Abdallah is a (non-practising) lawyer currently working in administrative oversight. Prior to that, May was a civil litigator. May is committed to community-building and has worked with organizations such as Art-reach Toronto, the South Asian Legal Clinic’s Forced Marriage Project, Maytree’s DiverseCity Fellows program, the HIV/AIDS Legal Clinic of Ontario, and AQSAzine. In addition to her CAMWL duties, May serves on the Executive Committee of the Arab Canadian Lawyers Association. 

Nabila Qureshi, J.D. (University of Toronto, Faculty of Law), B.A. (University of Toronto) is an employment and human rights lawyer in Toronto. She has a strong interest in social justice and constitutional law, including the protection of freedom of religion and equality rights. Her commitment to these issues has led her to advance the rights of marginalized groups through her work with various legal clinics and civil liberties organizations.

Natasha Persaud, is a Partner at Formative LLP where she practices Human Rights and Employment Law. She is also an Adjunct Faculty Member at Osgoode Hall Law School, where she supervises students at the Community and Legal Aid Services Programme, focusing on issues of poverty in the Administrative law context. Natasha is a former Advisory Council member of CAIR-Can (now National Council of Canadian Muslims).

Ruba Ali Al-Hassani, B.Sc. (Trent Univ.), M.A. Criminology (Univ. of Toronto), LL.M. (Osgoode Hall Law School, York Univ.) is a Ph.D. candidate at Osgoode Hall Law School.  She is a former lecturer at Trent University’s Department of Sociology, and works with the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project and does pro bono work for the Iraqi Cooperative Orphan Aid Foundation. Ruba is a blogger at The Huffington Post. She has appeared on BBC Radio and is a recurring guest at PressTV to discuss Iraqi and Canadian affairs. She tweets at @RubaAlHassani.

Sharifa Khan, J.D. (Osgoode Hall Law School), M.A. Political Science (University of Toronto) is an immigration lawyer practicing in Toronto. She has a long history of civic engagement and community activism focusing on social justice work. Sharifa has a particular interest in refugee law and humanitarian and compassionate cases.

Talia Joundi,  B.C.L/LL.B. (McGill University) is an immigration and refugee lawyer at the Jackman, Nazami & Associates. Previously, she worked with various legal clinics in Montreal before moving to Toronto to work with a non-profit that promotes human rights in housing. Her research and activism has centred on social justice issues including statelessness, immigration reform and public legal education.