Amina Saeed | President
Amina Saeed is an Illinois attorney in private practice. Her practice includes intellectual property and information technology law as well as providing estate planning services for individuals who wish to comply with both Illinois law and Islamic law.
Ms. Saeed took a leave from practicing law after the September 11 tragedy in order to focus on community representation. Her decision was based on the paradoxical situation she found herself in: she grieved with the rest of the nation as she mourned the loss of a relative at the World Trade Center, while responding to the simultaneous cloud of suspicion looming over all Muslims. Meanwhile, one of her relatives living in the United Kingdom would soon be serving in the war on terror as a member of the British armed forces. Shortly after 9/11, Ms. Saeed accepted a position as the first Director of the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago (CIOGC), a federation of over 50 members, including mosques, educational institutions and community service groups. She managed government, civic, media and interfaith relations on behalf of Chicago area Muslim institutions. Ms. Saeed served as the first Muslim woman to hold such a position.
Prior to her work with CIOGC, Ms. Saeed served as an attorney with the Office of the Cook County Public Guardian in both the appellate and trial divisions. She prepared the brief and assisted at oral argument before the Illinois Supreme Court in In re A.P., 179 Ill. 2d 184 (1997). Her published appellate decisions include In the Interest of Justin T., 291 Ill. App. 3d 872 (1st Dist. 1997); In the Interests of M.R. et al., 316 Ill. App. 3d 399 (1st Dist. 2000); and In re B.D. and B.D., 2001 Ill. App. LEXIS 163 (1st Dist. 2001).
Ms. Saeed earned an LL.M. degree in Information Technology and Privacy Law, with highest honors, from John Marshall Law School. She obtained her law degree from Valparaiso University. Her undergraduate degree was in Political Science and History, with a minor in Theology, from Loyola University Chicago.
Ms. Saeed serves as president-elect of the Muslim Bar Association of Illinois. She is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association, where she has been appointed by the president to the Committee on Women and Minority Participation in the Law. She is also a member of the American Bar Association, the Kane County Bar Association and the National Association of Muslim Lawyers. In addition, Ms. Saeed is a fellow of Leadership Greater Chicago and serves on the board of the Organization of Islamic Speakers, Midwest.
Ms. Saeed lives in the western suburbs, where her husband has established his dental practice. They have three energetic and curious young children, aged seven, four and two.
Junaid M. Afeef | Immediate-Past President
Junaid Afeef is a founding member of the Muslim Bar Association of Chicago. Mr. Afeef served on the MBA's first board as Secretary. Mr. Afeef has been a committed member of the Muslim legal community since 1997.
Mr. Afeef currently serves as an attorney in the Office of General Counsel in the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (ICJIA). At ICJIA Mr. Afeef works on criminal justice policy issues, oversight of federal grants to criminal justice programs in the State of Illinois and general legal matters for the agency.
From September 2007 to September 2009 Mr. Afeef stepped away from traditional law practice to lend his skills, networks and expertise within and outside of the American Muslim community in the areas of Islamic finance and grassroots community organizing. Mr. Afeef worked with Zayan Finance from the fall 2007 to the summer of 2008 to establish its commercial Islamic finance services in the central states of the U.S. From the summer of 2008 to the fall of 2009 Mr. Afeef helped the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago strengthen its interfaith outreach, communications and civic engagement efforts.
Mr. Afeef's legal experience include public service with the Cook County Public Defender's Office and also with the Chicago Transit Authority Law Department. Immediately after the terror attacks of September 11 Mr. Afeef opened a private law practice to focus on civil rights and civil liberties issues.
While in private practice Mr. Afeef performed many hours of pro bono legal services and advocacy efforts for immigrants, American Muslims and the local community in and around Hoffman Estates, Illinois. Mr. Afeef's private practice also focused on a variety of personal injury, criminal defense and real estate matters.
In addition to his service to MBA, Mr. Afeef has also been an active member of the Chicago Bar Association and the Illinois State Bar Association. Mr. Afeef served one term on the CBA's Young Lawyers Section Board. More recently Mr. Afeef served on the ISBA Human Rights Council.
Mr. Afeef's avocation is writing. His his essays and op-eds have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Dallas Morning News and several other regional and local newspapers. Mr. Afeef's writings also appear periodically at AltMuslim.com, in the Chicago Crescent (a monthly newspaper of CIOGC) and with the Institute of Social Policy and Understanding. Mr. Afeef maintains a personal blog called An American Muslim Journal.
Mr. Afeef earned his law degree from The American University's Washington College of Law in 1994. Before that he earned a bachelors degree in political science from the University of Iowa.
Anthony Simpkins | Board Member
Anthony Simpkins is an African-American Muslim attorney, a lifelong resident of Chicago, and an active member of the community. He received his JD and MA in Political Science in 1994 from Loyola University Chicago Law School, where he is still an alumni mentor for, and past president of the Black Law Student Association. Anthony is currently Deputy Commissioner for Developer Services at the City of Chicago Department of Housing, where he oversees a $600M portfolio of existing, public financed, affordable housing projects. Prior to his current position, Anthony was a Senior Counsel with the City of Chicago Law Department’s Building and Land Use Litigation Division, where his practice concentrated on public safety civil litigation, including building code enforcement, foreclosures, and real estate receiverships. In both positions Anthony has developed close working relationships with many local community organizations, as well as government agencies and officials, and supervises several special projects designed to preserve and rehabilitate affordable housing, including the award winning Troubled Building Initiative and the Winter Heat Receiver Project.
Before working for the City of Chicago, Anthony was a Skadden Foundation fellow, doing policy, advocacy, and representing low-income tenants with the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago and the Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing. Anthony is currently a Board member and past-President of the Muslim Bar Association of Chicago, which was incorporated in 1997 as the first association of Muslim lawyers in the country. He is also a past Executive Board member, and past chairman of the Social Service and Media Relations committees, for the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago, an umbrella organization of Chicago-area mosques, Islamic schools, and organizations. Anthony has authored a number of articles, including “lockout and Property Detentions for the Institute of Continuing Legal Education (ICLE), and is a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Islamic Law and Culture, an academic publication of DePaul University and the University of Arkansas, and a past member of the Criminal Justice Advisory Board for Taylor Business Institute.
Anthony is also an Executive Board member of the Cook County Bar Association (CCBA), the oldest African-American bar association in the country, co-chair of the CCBA Judicial Evaluation Committee, and also a member of the Chicago Bar Association. Anthony and his wife Tamaria McCann-Simpkins (Tammy), have four children. Tammy is an accomplished, professional jazz vocalist, who has toured the U.S. and Europe, and worked with such personalities as Ramsey Lewis and Ray Charles. Her most recent CD release is entitled “Classic”. Anthony and his family regularly volunteer with several community based organizations, including the Inner-city Muslim Action Network (IMAN) (of which Anthony’s eldest son Tariq is one of the first youth member of the Board of Directors), ChicagoCares, the Crib Collective, Inc. (of which Anthony is a past board member), the InterFaith Youth Core, and the Hyde Park Food Pantry.
LaDale George | Board Member
Mahrukh Hussain | Board Member
Mahrukh Hussain is an Illinois attorney and has been practicing law since 1996. She has served as an attorney in McDonald’s Corporation Legal Department since December 2000 and currently serves as General Counsel for the Central Division of McDonald’s USA, LLC. Her primary areas of concentration at McDonald’s are Franchising and Commercial Real Estate, but she encounters many different facets of the law in her role.
Prior to joining McDonald’s, Ms. Hussain was an associate at the law firm of Schwarz, Cooper, Greenberger & Krauss where she focused on commercial real estate. During her employment at Schwarz, Cooper, Greenberger & Krauss, she was granted leave for one year in order to clerk for Justice Rita Garman, who was then a Justice on the 4th District Illinois Appellate Court and who is currently a Justice on the Illinois Supreme Court.
Ms. Hussain earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Chicago in 1993. She earned her J.D. from the University of Illinois in 1996, where she was a member of the Law Review and Moot Court Board. Ms. Hussain is a member of the American Bar Association and Association of Corporate Counsel. Ms. Hussain was also a founding member of the Muslim Bar Association.
Ms. Hussain lives in the Western Suburbs of Chicago with her husband and two sons.
Zubair Khan | Board Member
Mazen Asbahi | Board Member