Community Activists Join MPAC in Honoring First Responders on 9/11 Anniversary

Los Angeles, CA: More than 200 people joined the Muslim Public Affairs Council in honoring the service and bravery of first responders at “One Nation, One Voice,” a forum and day committed to service projects commemorating the 10th anniversary of 9/11 on Saturday, Sept. 10. They represented several organizations including Muslim Public Affairs Council, Council of Pakistan American Affairs (COPAA), ISCS, Uplift, Ummah Community Clinic, American Muslim Health Professionals, American Muslim Women's  Empowerment Council, the Guiboard Center and Religion Inside Out. 
Joining MPAC for Saturday’s event at the Islamic Center of Southern California was Muslim American Kevin James, a former New York firefighter, who was at Ground Zero on that fateful day. James talked about working at the site, and that it is a day he will never forget. However, through that tragedy, James said we have to continue to build upon our diversity and unify.
 “It's about finding common ground. Even before we're Muslims, we're human beings," said James, adding that the sacrifice made by first responders is important. "Remember your first responders in a meaningful way, every day, not just on the anniversary of 9/11.”
MPAC also honored Officer Mike Odel with the Los Angeles Police Department, Captain II Sean K. Conway with the LA Fire Department and Reserve Chief Michael Leum with the LA Sheriff Department for their distinguished bravery and continued service to our community. Los Angeles community leaders who spoke at the event include, Deputy LAPD Chief Mike Downing, Councilman Tom LeBonge, City Council President Eric Garcetti MPAC Senior Adviser Dr. Maher Hathout, COPAA President Adnan Khan, and Mariam Rasheed, President DIL and American Muslim Women’s Empowerment Council.
‎"True courage is shown at the very first moment of intense fear; true generosity is shown at the very first moment of intense need," said Dr. Hathout about the courage of first responders.
Haris Tarin, MPAC’s Director of the DC Office, was invited by President Barack Obama to attend the “Concert of Hope” in Washington, DC, an interfaith prayer service and concert in tribute to the victims of the 9/11 attacks. Tarin was seated in the VIP section with senior white House staff. 
In addition to these two event, MPAC staffers and board members attended the interfaith vigil OneLight Los Angeles, the interfaith commemoration “Finding Hope in the Holy,”  and a 9/11 panel discussion at the All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena.
Founded in 1988, MPAC is an American institution which informs and shapes public opinion and policy by serving as a trusted resource to decision makers in government, media and policy institutions. MPAC is also committed to developing leaders with the purpose of enhancing the political and civic participation of Muslim Americans.



Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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