Abdullah Bin Hamid Ali
Abdullah bin Hamid Ali is a full-time faculty member specializing in Islamic Law, Theology, and Hadith Science at Zaytuna College in Berkeley, CA. He is a lifelong student of the Islamic tradition. Born to Muslim parents, he began a serious study of Islam in his early teens. He attended Temple University for two years (1995-1997) prior to pursuing studies that culminated in a four-year collegiate license (ijaza ‘ulya) from the prestigious Al-Qarawiyin University of Fes, Morocco (1997-2001). He holds a BA from the Al-Karaouine/Al-Qarawiyin University’s Faculty of Islamic Law (Shariah) and an MA in Ethics & Social Theory from The Graduate Theological Union (2009-2012) of Berkeley, CA. He is also pursuing his PhD in Cultural & Historical Studies at GTU, as one of the institution’s Presidential Scholars.
Ali Ataie
Ali Ataie has been involved in interfaith activities for over fifteen years. He has been a guest lecturer and guest instructor at several colleges and universities, including Cal Poly State, UC Davis, UC Berkeley, UCLA, Cal State East Bay, and others. He has also engaged in dialogs and debates with a number of Christian scholars on topics ranging from the historicity of the resurrection of Christ (upon whom be peace) and the Prophethood of Muhammad (upon whom be peace and blessings). He studied various Islamic sciences with local San Francisco Bay Area scholars. He is a graduate of the Badr Arabic Language Institute in Hadramawt, Yemen, and studied at the prestigious Dar al-Mustafa, also in Hadramawt, under some of the most eminent scholars in the world. He holds a Master’s Degree in Biblical Studies from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, with emphasis upon the New Testament (he is the first Muslim seminarian in the 147-year history of the school to earn this degree). He is certified in Arabic, Hebrew, and Biblical Greek, and is fluent in Farsi. Currently he is working on a Ph.D. in Islamic Biblical Hermeneutics at the GTU and is an adjunct professor of Islamic Studies and lecturer on World Religions at the GTU.
Dr. As’ad Tarsin
As’ad Tarsin has been designing Islamic educational programs and teaching the basics of Islam for more than a decade. After completing his bachelor’s degree in Islamic studies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, he continued his study of Islamic theology, sacred law, philosophy and spirituality with some of the country’s most prominent Muslim scholars including Shaykh Hamza Yusuf and Dr. Sherman Jackson, among others. He has served as the curriculum director for the Deen Intensive Foundation for the last ten years and has a particular interest in creating sustainable models of education for new and returning Muslims. He lectures and teaches courses on Islam across the country. He recently wrote Being Muslim: A Practical Guide . He is an emergency physician by training and lives in California with his wife and three children.
Faraz Khan
Faraz A. Khan is a full-time faculty member and the Honor’s Program coordinator at Zaytuna College. He lived in Amman, Jordan, for several years, studying and teaching the traditional Islamic sciences, with a focus on Hanafi law and legal theory, theology, logic, hadith studies, and Arabic grammar. He also served as an instructor and academic advisor at the Qasid Institute. He is a faculty member and researcher for Seekersguidance, and has translated into English classical Arabic texts in Hanafi jurisprudence, Ash`ari and Maturidi theology, and logic.
Feraidoon Mojadedi
Feraidoon Mojadedi is one of the most well-known and respected community activists, lecturers, and entrepreneurs in the Bay Area, California. He was born in Herat, Afghanistan and immigrated with his family to America during the Russian invasion of Afghanistan in 1982. He completed his degree from San Francisco State University where he majored in history. During his last year of college, he took on a major project and became producer of Muslim World TV, a weekly TV show that was broadcast in the greater San Francisco Bay Area for five years. Around the same time, Ustadh Feraidoon spearheaded the weekend classes with Shaykh Hamza Yusuf at the iconic Islamic Study School in Hayward California, which would eventually become the springboard that launched Zaytuna Institute, now known as Zaytuna College.
Dr. Hatem Bazian
Hatem Bazian is a co-founder and Professor of Islamic Law and Theology at Zaytuna College, the 1st Accredited Muslim Liberal Arts College in the United States. In addition, Prof. Bazian is a lecturer in the Departments of Near Eastern and Asian American and Asian Diaspora Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Bazian between 2002-2007, also served as an adjunct professor of law at Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley. He teaches courses on Islamic Law and Society, Islam in America: Communities and Institutions, De-Constructing Islamophobia and Othering of Islam, Religious Studies, and Middle Eastern Studies. In addition to Berkeley, Prof. Bazian served as a visiting Professor in Religious Studies at Saint Mary’s College of California 2001-2007 and adviser to the Religion, Politics and Globalization Center at UC Berkeley. In Spring 2009, Prof. Bazian founded at Berkeley the Islamophobia Research and Documentation Project at the Center for Race and Gender, a research unit dedicated to the systematic study of Othering Islam and Muslims. Prof. Bazian in Spring 2012 launched the Islamophobia Studies Journal, which is published bi-annually through a collaborative effort between the Islamophobia Research and Documentation Project of the Center for Race and Gender at the University of California at Berkeley, the Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Initiative for the School of Ethnic Studies at San Francisco State University; the Center for Islamic Studies at the Graduate Theological Union, the International Centre for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding at the University of South Australia, and Zaytuna College. In addition to academic work, Dr, Bazian is a weekly columnist for the Turkish Daily Sabah Newspaper and Turkey Agenda online magazine. Dr. Bazian is founder and national Chair of American Muslims for Palestine, board member of the Islamic Scholarship Fund, Muslim Legal Fund of America, President of Dollar for Deen Charity, and Chair of Northern California Islamic Council.
Imam Ibrahim Rahim
Imam Ibrahim Rahim is a graduate of the Islamic University of Medina, Saudi Arabia Class of 1989. Imam Ibrahim completed the Intermediate and Secondary Institutes as well as the world-renown Arabic Language Program within the Faculty of Arabic Language founded by Dr. F. Abdur-Raheem. Imam Ibrahim also is known for his Quran Recitation and attended the Khalil Ar-Rahman Quran Academy in Al-Medina Al-Munawwara. Imam Ibrahim continues to focus his efforts on writing his knowledge and travelling to teach and provide training within Muslim Communities. In 2011 alone, Imam Ibrahim completed five books on the religion of Islam including literary work regarding Arabic Grammar, Tefsir of the Holy Quran, Tauheed, Womanhood in Islam, and an analysis of Iman as given in the Hadith Collection of Imam Muslim (M). For many years he served as an Imam in the Boston area. Currently he serves as the Imam of Lighthouse Mosque in Oakland.
Shaykh Jihad Hashim Brown
Shaykh Jihad Hashim-Brown – is Director of Research at the Tabah Foundation in Abu Dhabi, U.A.E. After receiving degrees in Psychology and Near East Studies from Rutgers University, New Jersey in 1994, he went on to study Arabic rhetoric, dialectic theology, and Islamic legal theory with prominent religious authorities in Damascus. In accordance with the criteria of traditional learning methods he studied privately with notable scholars like Muhammad Adib al-Kallas, Dr. Saeed Ramadan al-Buti, and Muhammad Ali al-Shuqayr receiving his scholarly licenses (ijazah) after ten years of intensive training. This included a year in the Minor Atlas of Morrocco reading the Comendium of Compendia of al-Taj al-Subki with the scholar and jurist Muhammad Ghali al-Dadisi in the “antique” madrasa of Tanalit. Mr. Hashim-Brown travels widely, teaching and lecturing in the service of engaging classical jurisprudence and theology with the contemporary age. He has also appeared frequently on numerous satellite television programs in the region.
Khaled Hamade
Khaled Hamade is the former president of an IT solutions and services company based in Silicon Valley, California. He has founded, partnered and managed several companies in the past 20 years, in disciplines including medical supplies, health management, software applications and garments. Khaled has been an active member of the San Francisco Bay Area Muslim Community for more than 20 years, especially in the area of Islamic education and community services. He delivers Friday sermons in more than six mosques and universities on regular basis. He was formally serving as the Chairman of the Board of Granada Islamic School, one of the oldest full-time Islamic schools in the United States and the largest Islamic school in the San Francisco Bay area. Khaled has been married for more than 20 years and has three children.
Mohammed Abdul Baseer
Mohammed Abdul Baseer is an engineer and a former president of ISEB in Fremont. He has been active in the Bay Area Muslim community for the past 3 decades. He and his family live in Fremont.
Dr. Mohamad Rajabally
Dr. Mohamad Rajabally practices dentistry in Fremont, California, where he volunteers with Head Start to promote dental health. He is a lay leader within the local Islamic Community. Since 1995, he has served on the Fremont Human Relations Commission (HRC). As chair of the HRC, Dr. Rajabally helped lead Fremont’s first Unity Day in 1998, and played an important leadership role in interfaith rallies in 2000 to show community solidarity against acts of hate aimed at any racial/ethnic group after a high school and a synagogue were vandalized. After the 9/11 attacks on the United States, Dr. Rajabally helped to organize and spoke at community-wide events promoting community harmony and expressing solidarity against acts of terror. Dr. Rajabally currently participates in an interfaith/inter-ethnic committee to address the perceived threat of hateful acts against anyone, but with special concern for the Muslim and the Sikh people in the Tri-City Area.
Dr. Nazeer Ahmed
Dr. Nazeer Ahmed is a distinguished scientist, community leader and historian. Currently, he is Executive Director of the American Institute of Islamic History and Culture and is also visiting Dean at the HMS Institute of Technology, Bangalore, India. He holds a Ph.D. degree from Cornell University, MS and Ae.E. degrees from the California Institute of Technology, MBA from NYU and Rider University and BS degree from the University of Mysore, India. He is the author of the Encyclopedia of Islamic History and several books including a two volume treatise Islam in Global History, published by Suhail Academy, Lahore, Pakistan and a lecture series “What Makes Us Human–A Spiritual Perspective.” Dr. Ahmed was an elected Member of the Legislature in Bangalore, India (1978) and was a candidate for the United States Congress from the 46th Congressional District (1992). He is an inventor and holds twelve United States patents. His articles have appeared in the Journal of Applied Physics, Journal of Applied Mechanics, Journal of Basic Engineering, Journal of Acoustical Society of America and other scientific journals as well as in the Los Angeles Times.
Dr. Nazeer was a Chief Engineer on the Hubble Space Telescope and was a scientist on the Saturn, Apollo, and Moon Landing Projects as well as Solid Propellant Rocket studies. He is a philanthropist and has contributed extensively to education projects in India under “Rank Nazeer Sab Charities, Bangalore, India” of which he serves as the patron.
Parvez Ahmed
Parvez Ahmed serves as the Chief Development Officer at Taleef Collective in Fremont. He is also Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of San Francisco where he teaches a course on Islamic Jurisprudence. He has been involved with the Muslim community for over 20 years and has lectured on topics related to Islam at various college campuses, forums and religious institutions.
Sheikh Rami Nsour
Sheikh Rami Nsour was born in Amman, Jordan and moved to the United States at the age of 9. During his college years, he attended classes taught by shuyukh in the San Francisco Bay Area; notably, Shaykh Khatri bin Bayba, Shaykh Abdullah bin Ahmedna and Shaykh Hamza Yusuf. With their encouragement, Rami embarked on a journey to Mauritania in 1998.In Mauritania, he studied with some of the greatest scholars of our times such as his foremost, Shaykh Murabit al Hajj bin Fahfu. He was also blessed to study with Murabit Muhammad al-Amin bin al-Shaykh, Murabit Ahmed Fal bin Ahmedna, Shaykh Abdullah bin Ahmedna, Shaykh Tahir ibn Murabit al Hajj and Shaykh Sa’d Bu among others.Rami completed studies in the subjects of Qu’ran, ‘Aqeedah (Belief), Fiqh (Law), Nahu (grammar), Ihsan (spiritual purification), and adab (manners). He has completed the final text of Maliki fiqh, Mukhtasar Khalil, with memorization and has been granted permission by his shuyukh to teach. In addition to his extensive study of fiqh, he was afforded the unique opportunity to attend one on-one sessions with his teachers where he would engage them in countless hours of discussion on the application of fiqh in general and specifically for those living in the West. After spending 4 years in Mauritania, he spent another 4 years with Shaykh Saleck bin Sidine, a visiting scholar from Mauritania at the Zaytuna Institute. He lived with Shaykh Saleck and was again afforded the opportunity to learn practical applications of fiqh during this extraordinary ‘in-residence’ experience. Rami has translated traditional Islamic texts from Arabic including various works on Maliki fiqh and several works of the great Mauritanian scholar, Shaykh Muhammad Mawlud, including Birr al-Walidayan (The Rights of Parents), Ishraq al-Qarar (The Spiritual Aspects of Prayer), and the Adab of Sadaqa. He has also translated a versified version of Adab of the Student entitled Iya’ant al Mutafahim (The Assistance of the Student) by Shaykh Muhammad al Hasan as well as the original Taleem al Muta’llim by Shaykh Zarnuji. In addition, Rami has dedicated much of his time in teaching, conducting seminars and counseling. He has spent a great deal of his time teaching and aiding Muslims in prison and has seen how knowledge unlocks the human potential. His students in the prisons have in turn taught countless people and invited many people to Islam. He was instrumental in co-founding Dar as-Salaam, a project dedicated to building and supporting a school in Mauritania.Shaykh Rami serves as Senior Instructor at SeekersHub Global. Rami is the co-founder of the Tayba Foundation which has a correspondence program for Muslim inmates ( In addition to traditional teaching licenses (ijazah), Rami holds a B.A. in Human Development with a Focus on Early Childhood. Rami resides in the San Francisco Bay Area, is married and has two children.
Imam Tahir Anwar
Tahir Anwar was born in London, England, and has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1983. Upon completing his religious studies at the renowned Darul Uloom Falah Darain in India, he has been serving as the imam of one of the oldest masjids in the country, the Islamic Center of San Jose, since 2001. He also teaches Islamic Law at the renowned Zaytuna College, America’s first Muslim liberal arts college in Berkeley, CA. After teaching middle school at one of the oldest Muslim schools in the country for seven years, he now sits on the board and teaches at the Averroes Institute, the Bay Area’s first Muslim high school. Tahir Anwar has a passion for community service. He currently sits on the board of North American Islamic Shelter for the Abused, an organization that works towards alleviating issues related to abuse and domestic violence, which also has a shelter for abused women in the Bay Area. He served on the Human Rights Commission for the City of San Jose for over five years, and the Human Relations Commission for the County of Santa Clara for one year. He also leads a group for Hajj each year, which has been covered by CNN twice.
Imam Zaid Shakir
Imam Zaid Shakir has taught courses in Arabic, Islamic spirituality, contemporary Muslim thought, and Shafi’i fiqh at Zaytuna College. He presently teaches Islamic history and politics. He speaks and writes on a wide range of topics and has become a voice of conscience for American Muslims as well as people of other faiths. He is regularly included as one of the Western world’s most influential Muslim scholars in The Muslim 500, an annual ranking edited by John Esposito and Ibrahim Kalin. He is also one of the signatories of "A Common Word Between Us and You," an open letter by Islamic scholars to Christian leaders that calls for peace and mutual understanding. He holds an MA in Political Science from Rutgers University. He is one of three co-founders of Zaytuna College and serves on its Board of Trustees. Courses Arabic Language, Islamic Spirituality, Islamic History, Shafi’i Fiqh, Politics Selected Works Where I'm Coming From: The Year In Review, NID Publishers, 2010. Treatise for the Seekers of Guidance, NID Publishers, 2008 (translated with commentary has been awarded as a finalist in the category of general spirituality by USA Book News). “The Zaytuna Ruku Tree”, Holy Ground: A Gathering of Voices on Caring and Creation, 2008. A Sierra Club landmark book collection. Scattered Pictures: Reflections of An American Muslim, Zaytuna Institute, 2005, and reprint NID Publishers, 2007. Agenda to Change our Condition (2007). The Heirs of the Prophets, Starlatch Press, 2001 (translated). Muslims and The Climate Crisis: Responding To A Higher Call, Creation At The Crossroads, 2016. A faith-sharing resource created in collaboration by RENEW International, GreenFaith, and the Catholic Climate Covenant. Education BA, Islamic Law and Arabic Language, Abu Nour University, Damascus, 2001 MA, Political Science, Rutgers University, New Jersey, 1985 BA, (summa cum laude ), International Relations, American University, Washington, DC, 1983. Computer Support Specialist, United States Air Force, Logistical Support Training School, Denver, Colorado, 1976 United States Air Force – Accommodation Medal – 1981 Diplomas (ijazahs) from Shaykh Abdul Rahman al-Shaghuri (non-philosophy Tasawwuf texts), Shaykh Mustafa al-Turkmani (Islamic Sciences) and Shaykh Muhammad al-Ya'qubi (Islamic Sciences). Personal website

For immediate contact call: (925) 575-7744

Center Staff: