White House Nominates and Appoints American Muslims to Key Senior Diplomatic & Religious Affairs Roles: Muslim Public Affairs Council Congratulates Rashad Hussain and Khizr Khan

Washington D.C. — On Friday, July 30th, the White House announced a series of nominations for critical religious affairs roles. The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) congratulates Rashad Hussain and Khizr Khan on their nominations. Rashad Hussain is the first Muslim to be nominated for Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom. Khizr Khan, Gold Star Father of Captain Humayun Khan, has been appointed as a Commissioner on the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom. Mr. Khan first made history in 2016 in his speech to the Democratic National Convention. These nominations mark a significant step for the recognition of American Muslim public servants for their critical contributions to American pluralism.

We applaud the Biden Administration for continuing to fulfill its promise to make the federal government more representative of the rich diversity of America. We look forward to working with Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) to shepherd Hussain and Mr. Khan’s nomination process through the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the full Senate.

“Rashad has served our community and country at the highest level of integrity and intelligence. We look forward to working with him in advancing religious freedom under his leadership. Above all, he has served as a mentor and role model to Americans of all backgrounds, sharing with them the importance of public service and serving our country.”

- Salam Al-Marayati, MPAC President

Rashad Hussain is currently Director for Partnerships and Global Engagement at the National Security Council. Prior to this role, he served as Senior Counsel at the Department of Justice’s National Security Division, President Obama’s Special Envoy to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), U.S. Special Envoy for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications, and Deputy Associate White House Counsel. In his role as OIC Envoy, Hussain helped develop U.S policy to expand partnerships with Muslim-majority countries, civil society organizations, and the OIC, the world’s second largest multilateral organization after the UN. As Special Envoy for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications, Hussain led an inter-agency body that worked with international partners to amplify credible narratives in countering terrorist propaganda.

The nomination of American Muslims to important and senior level diplomatic positions underscores the essence of our shared American and Islamic values. MPAC is proud to have worked with a broad cross section of Muslim organizations to acheive more representation in the federal government.We look forward to American Muslims contributing to all branches of the government as we proceed under a President that values representation of all Americans. MPAC continues its work with the government, civil society, and the American Muslim and interfaith communitues to make this a reality.

###

Muslim Public Affairs Council: Founded in 1988, the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) is a national public affairs nonprofit organization working to promote and strengthen American pluralism by increasing understanding and improving policies that impact American Muslims. For more information, please contact: policy@mpac.org

The Muslim Public Affairs Council improves public understanding and policies that impact American Muslims by engaging our government, media and communities.