Group Submits Resumes to White House In Bid to Get More Muslim Americans In Administration

March 29, 2009

Author: Noreen S. Ahmed-Ullah

Source: The Chicago Tribune/The Boston Herald

In a bid to get more Muslim Americans working in the Obama administration, a book with resumes of 45 of the nation’s most qualified _ Ivy League grads, Fortune 500 executives and public servants, all carefully vetted _ has been submitted to the White House.

The effort, driven by community leaders and others, including Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., was bumped up two weeks ahead of schedule because White House officials heard about the venture, said J. Saleh Williams, program coordinator for the Congressional Muslim Staffers Association who sifted through more than 300 names.

"It was mostly under the radar," said Williams. "We thought it would put (the president) in a precarious position. We didn’t know how closely he wanted to appear to be working with the Muslim American community."

he effort aims to get the administration focused on Muslim Americans, a group that has at times felt like a pariah. During the campaign, Obama’s staff prevented Muslim women wearing head scarves from being photographed behind him in one of many incidents that left Muslim Americans feeling slighted by the candidate.

Now, Muslim Americans _ who according to a recent study overwhelmingly backed Obama in the November election _ have been carefully watching the administration’s every step.