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Board Of Directors

Idrisa Pandit
Founder, Director, Advisor

Idrisa is an academic and a passionate social justice worker. She has been recognized for her volunteerism and community contributions. Among her numerous awards are the University of Waterloo President’s community award 2017, Ontario’s Leading women leading girls award 2016, Oktober fest Woman of the year award, 2016, and the 2007 Top twenty Canadian Muslim women who inspire award. Idrisa’s research and writings focus on interfaith relations, anti oppression, anti racism, gender and Islam, and the Kashmir conflict.

Khalid Khokar
Board Director- President

Mr. Khalid Khokhar is the Executive Director of the Islamic Centre of Cambridge and a life long educator and school administrator. Mr. Khokhar has been associated with MSS in a variety of roles, as a Board member, as well as a mentor and advisor. Mr. Khokar has served on Boards of many different not for profit organizations and brings a wealth of expertise to Muslim Social Services.

Brice Balmer
Board Director, Co-Chair

Brice is a Professor Emeritus of Luther University College, Wilfrid Laurier University. He taught courses in the Master of Arts in Theology program, in the field of Spiritual Care and Psychotherapy. Brice is a co-founder of Interfaith Grand River and is an well recognized community leader and author. As an ordained Mennonite minister he has worked in chaplaincy for many years, especially with people who are marginalized, in Denver, Colorado, and in Kitchener, Ontario. He was also a co-pastor at First Mennonite Church, in Kitchener, for 17 years.

Humera Javed
Board Director, Treasurer

Humera Javed is the Education and Inclusion Coordinator at the Diversity & Equity Office, Wilfred Laurier University in Waterloo, Canada. She is a PhD student studying Curriculum Studies & Teacher Development at OISE (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education), University of Toronto. She is interested in issues of diversity, equity, social justice, religious pluralism, intra and inter-faith dialogue, and how they relate to community-building and education.

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Kaleem Rehman
Board Director

Kaleem Rehman having graduated from the University of Guelph, made the selfless decision to serve the most vulnerable populations with diversified backgrounds as a caseworker with the Region of Waterloo for 29 years simultaneously becoming a Real Estate Agent and Sophisticated Investor.  His passion and purpose are to create generational financial security through real estate and education to shift family paradigms. He believes this is possible through collaborating with people of different backgrounds, ideals and experiences to uncover untapped opportunities.

Rihanat El-Alawa
Board Director

Rihanat migrated to Canada from Nigeria and is very passionate about building relationships and helping people who are vulnerable. Rihanat is an active member of the Muslim community in Cambridge Ontario. Rihanat holds a Bachelor’s degree, and is currently pursuing an Associate degree in Islamic Education at the International Open University. Rihanat is a member of the Langs Board and is part of the Community Services Committee. She is also a Peer Champion with the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI). Rihanat was a Peer Leader at the Healthy Eating, Healthy Living in Canada program at the Kitchener Downtown Community Health Center (KDCHC). She enjoys spending time with her family and reaching out to her friends.

Sue Hummel
Board Director

Sue graduated from the University of Waterloo and remained an active member of the Waterloo Region community through involvement with the Forest Hill United Church as an Outreach Coordinator, the Tri-Faith Sponsorship group, and volunteering with the Chandler Mowat Community Centre. She is a caseworker with the social services department of the Region of Waterloo. Sue is passionate about building bridges and developing a strong sense of community regardless of race or religion.

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Aurra Startup
Board Director

Aurra Startup (she/her) is a treaty person situated on the Haldimand Tract, the land promised to and cared for by the Haudenosaunee people of Six Nations. She is completing her graduate studies with a focus on restorative justice education to promote equity and inclusivity within schools. Beyond academia, Aurra loves being rooted within the community and spends much of her time volunteering with local organizations doing critical social justice work.

Ismail Akther 
Board Director

Ismail works as the Director of Tax and Audit at the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada). In this role, he leads the strategy for the development of audit, tax, and corporate governance resources. Before joining CPA Canada, Ismail was a Senior Manager in the National Auditing Standards for Grant Thornton, where he led audits of various industries, including charities. Ismail is a CPA, CA and holds a Bachelor of Accountancy from Brock University.

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