NLC North Carolina '19 Alumna
Durham County Commissioner-elect
Born and raised by immigrant parents, my entire life I have seen the struggle to attain the American dream. These struggles never faded my parents' determination to raise my two sisters and myself to value and cherish the people around us no matter your background.
I live in Durham with my extremely supportive husband, Towqir Aziz, and our two wonderful pups Otis & Nala. Durham is our home where we see a beautiful community we can start our family in.
Having graduated from NC State with a Bachelor of Science in Sustainable Materials & Technology, and my husband having degrees from UNC & Duke, it would be safe to say we are a house divided, but a home united, through our love for the Triangle and especially Durham.
My husband & I met in Sunday School where the values and morals of caring for our community were instilled in us. I was taught that we shouldn’t be comfortable when your neighbor isn’t taken care of. My mom served as Chair of the Women’s Committee of our Mosque and would bring me along from a young age to volunteer at the food bank, and set up homes for single mothers and refugee families across the Triangle. The experiences she shared with me were constant reminders that no matter how busy our life may get there is always time to care for others.
I have been a grassroots organizer since high school, dedicating my time to fighting for others. I was pushed to the fight for justice after my community faced one of the worst injustices imaginable. On February 10th, 2015 while studying at NC State, hoping to pursue a career in sustainable supply chain, my best friend Yusor, her husband Deah and younger sister Razan were brutally murdered in their home in Durham in a hate crime committed by their neighbor. This was a heinous act of hate that caused ripples across the world. Our community deeply suffered. I reflected and asked myself how can I be content with all the blessings I have been given in this world when there is so much to do to fight injustice, uplift each other, and to make our communities better for future generations. I’m fighting for a better Durham so that others don’t have to suffer the pain my community did.
In 2016, I served as Political Director in North Carolina, South Carolina, New Jersey & New York for the Bernie Sanders Presidential Campaign. My work focused on reaching out to marginalized voices and educating communities on policies and issues such as healthcare and the environment. In January of 2017, I was elected as 3rd Vice Chair of the North Carolina Democratic Party, and was the first Muslim ever elected to the Executive Council. My role as 3rd Vice Chair has revolved around bringing different voices to the table and uplifting them, giving communities the opportunities to hear from their elected officials and ask them questions about issues they face every day. In 2018, I was appointed to the newly created Durham Mayor’s Council for Women and was unanimously elected as Chair of the Council. Our council serves to alleviate the issues women face in the city of Durham alongside our partnership with the Durham County Women’s Commission.