Ameena Mirza Qazi is the executive director of the Los Angeles chapter of the National Lawyers Guild. A civil rights attorney and activist, Ameena has worked on free speech, social and economic justice, discrimination, First Amendment, equal protection, and procedural due process issues. Formerly the deputy executive director and staff attorney for the Council on American-Islamic Relations — Greater Los Angeles Area Chapter (CAIR-LA), the largest American Muslim civil rights and advocacy group, cases she’s worked on include co-counseling a wrongful death action and §1983 claim against LAPD that resulted in a $1.7 million verdict, and co-counseling a class action lawsuit with the ACLU of Southern California and Hadsell, Stormer and Renick, LLP against the FBI for unlawful surveillance of the Southern California Muslim community. Ameena has spoken both nationally and internationally on civil rights issues affecting American Muslims, and has given dozens of community workshops and presentations. Prior to working at CAIR, Ameena clerked with the United Auto Workers legal department, as well as clerked for the Wayne State University Disability Rights Clinic and the Civil Rights Litigation Clinic. She also worked on various research projects, including the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding's “Detroit Mosque Study” as well as PEW Foundation's “Muslim Americans: Middle Class and Mostly Mainstream.” A member of the California State Bar, Ameena graduated with cum laude honors from Wayne State University School of Law, and graduated magna cum laude from UCLA with a BA in political science. She is also proud to be on the advisory board of the South Asian Network (SAN) and the boards of the ACLU of Southern California and the Public Law Center.
An Extraordinary Person
Shirin Ebadi’s autobiographical “Until We Are Free” describes her struggle to erect human rights law in Iran after winning the Nobel Peace Prize....