Board of Directors

NAAIMS is a 501 (c) (3) Tax-exempt Organization

Run by a Board of Directors Elected Every Two Years
(Term from 2017 – 2019)

Dr. Jon Mandaville
Portland State University, Portland, OR

Jon Mandaville grew up in an oil camp in Saudi Arabia, and attended high school in Beirut, Lebanon. After obtaining his B.A. in history from Dartmouth College in 1959, he pursued graduate studies at the University of Edinburgh and received an M.A. in Islamic studies (1961). He earned his Ph.D. in history and Near Eastern studies from Princeton University, NJ (1969). He is currently Professor Emeritus at Portland State University in the History Department and Middle East Studies Center. As an Ottomanist, his research and publications have focused on the social and legal history of the Middle East since 1500 with special emphasis on the Arab world. He travels throughout the Middle East, most often these days to Saudi Arabia. Each year he teaches an advanced course on the modern history of the Arabian Peninsula, a course on Palestine and Israel, and gives a seminar on the Ottoman Empire from the 14th – 17th centuries.  
Vice President
Dr. Malik Mufti
Tufts University, Medford, MA

Malik Mufti is professor of political science at Tufts University, Medford, MA, where he teaches courses on international relations as well as the politics of the Near East, and where he has served as director of the International Relations and Middle Eastern Studies Programs, as well as chair of the Department of Political Science. He is the author of Sovereign Creations: Pan-Arabism and Political Order in Syria and Iraq (Cornell University Press, 1996), and Daring and Caution in Turkish Strategic Culture: Republic at Sea (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009). The following are among his latest articles: “The AK Party’s Islamic Realist Political Vision: Theory and Practice” (Politics and Governance, October 2014); “Democratizing Potential of the ‘Arab Spring’: Some Early Observations” (Government and Opposition, July 2015); “Neo-Ottomanists and Neoconservatives: A Strange Alignment in the 1990s” (Insight Turkey, Winter 2016); “Turkey’s Choice”( Insight Turkey, forthcoming winter 2017); and “Ibn Rushd’s Political Philosophy in Contemporary Arab Scholarship: A Transient Revival?” (Journal of Islamic and Muslim Studies (JIMS) Vol 2 No 1 May 2017). He is currently working on a research project on realism in Islamic political thought.

Dr. Aisha Y. Musa
Independent Scholar - Islamic and Qur’anic Studies, Tigard, OR

Aisha Y. Musa obtained her Ph.D. in Arabic and Islamic studies from the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA. Her research and teaching interests include Hadith and Sunna, translation of classical Arabic texts, Qur’anic interpretation, women’s issues, Islamic Law, and modern-day reformist and neo-traditionalist movements. Musa’s publications include Hadith as Scripture: Discussions on the Authority of Prophetic Traditions in Islam (Palgrave, 2008), “Hadith Studies” in The Bloomsbury Companion to Islamic Studies (Continuum, 2013), “The Relationship of al-ma‘qùl and al-manqùl in Mullā Khusraw’s Conceptualization of Sunna” in the Proceedings of International Symposium on Mullā Khusraw (Bursa, Turkey, 2013), “Jizya: Toward a more Qur’anically based Understanding of an Historically Problematic Term,” in Transcendent Thought (November, 2011), Al-Mostafa Center for Islamic Research, Manila, Philippines, and “The Qur’anists,” Religion Compass 4/1 (2010). Forthcoming in 2016, Securing Knowledge: A translation and analysis of al-Khaṭīb al-Baghdādī’s Taqyīd al-ʿIlm (Leiden: Brill). She has made presentations at conferences nationally and globally, and has served both as a panelist and a chair at past NAAIMS conferences. Her presentation at NAAIMS 42nd Annual Conference in 2013, cosponsored by Princeton University, highlighted “Jizya: An Example of Continual Reinterpretation and Reform with a Contemporary Qur’ānic Reinterpretation,” and in her 2008 presentation at NAAIMS (Formerly AMSS) 37th Annual Conference, cosponsored by Harvard Divinity School focused on “ ‘We Have Made you Peoples and Tribes’ ... A Qur’anically-Based Vision of Multi-Culturalism.

Assistant Treasurer
Ms. Aila A. Ghori

Aila A. Ghori received her Bachelor of Science degree in Decision and Information Sciences and Accounting from the University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland in 1999. She also has training in Network Security Administration, SQL Server, security of the OS/390, the programming languages Pascal and Visual Basic, and the operating systems: Unix, Win95, 98, NT, and 2000. Aila is also active with the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA), a professional organization for IT Audit professionals that serves as an education foundation to expand the knowledge and value of the IT governance and control field. Aila has been involved with a financial services firm assisting with various audit and accounting functions. Prior to the financial work, she was a member of Marriott International’s Audit team, where she was primarily responsible for conducting internal computer and application controls reviews, as well as identifying risk management issues within the firm. Aila also has consulted with a large accounting firm where she created databases, conducted data analysis, and wrote and conducted test plans for various financial systems. Aila is married with two children and is settled in Virginia. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her kids, reading, and cooking. Aila speaks fluent English, Urdu and Hindi.                                                        

Member at Large
Dr. Maria M. Dakake
George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Maria M. Dakake holds a B.A. from Cornell University (1990) and an M.A. (1998) and Ph.D. (2000) in Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University. She is currently associate professor of religious studies at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA, where she has recently been elected chair of the Religious Studies Department (term to begin in Fall 2013), and is a founding member and director of the interdisciplinary Islamic studies program. Her research interests and publications lie in the fields of Islamic intellectual history, with a particular interest in Shi’ite and Sufi traditions, and in women’s religious experiences. Over the last several years, her work has focused primarily on the Qur’an and the tafsir tradition. She has organized or co-organized international conferences on the Qur’an and Qur’anic interpretation at George Mason University and at Howard Divinity School. Her book, The Charismatic Community: Shi`ite Identity in Early Islam, was published by SUNY Press in 2008. She has just completed work on a major collaborative project to produce the Harper Collins Study Quran, which includes verse-by-verse annotation and extensive commentary on the Qur’anic text, to be published in Spring 2014. She is currently working with Daniel Madigan on a co-edited volume, the Routledge Companion to the Qur’an, and is working independently on a monograph on the concept of religion as a universal phenomenon in the Qur’an and Islamic tradition.

Member at Large
Dr. Mohammad Hassan Khalil
Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Mohammad Hassan Khalil is an associate professor of religious studies, an adjunct professor of law, and director of the Muslim Studies Program at Michigan State University. Before returning to his hometown of East Lansing, Michigan, he was an assistant professor of religion and visiting professor of law at the University of Illinois. He specializes in Islamic thought and is author of Islam and the Fate of Others: The Salvation Question (Oxford University Press, 2012) and Jihad, Radicalism, and the New Atheism (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming in 2017); and editor of Between Heaven and Hell: Islam, Salvation, and the Fate of Others (Oxford University Press, 2013). He has presented papers at various national and international conferences, and has published peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters on various topics, from early Islamic historiography to bioethics. He serves on multiple editorial boards and the board of directors of the Society for the Study of Muslim Ethics. In 2015 he received the Michigan State University Teacher-Scholar Award.

Member at Large
Dr. Kenneth Garden
Tufts University, Medford, MA

Kenneth Garden received his B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. During a junior year abroad in Bonn, West Germany in 1988-89, he became interested in the contemporary Middle East and began studying Arabic when back in Wisconsin. His interest shifted from the contemporary period to the middle ages. He completed his Ph.D. in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago in 2005, and today is an associate professor in the Department of Religion at Tufts University, Medford, MA. His book, The First Islamic Reviver, is on Abū Ḥāmid al-Ghazālī, his Revival of the Religious Sciences, and the role this book and its agenda played in his life, thought, and writings. Most of his publications have been about al-Ghazālī and the reception of his writings in the Islamic West. He is currently working on shorter contemporary projects on German Muslim public intellectuals and atheists who were formerly Muslims. He has spent over three years living in Egypt and Morocco and four years in Germany, Czechia, and Sweden.


Board Related News

  • The passing of former NAAIMS President Ali A. Mazrui - Click here to read the obituary
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