While practicing employment and civil rights law at Faegre & Benson (now Faegre Baker Daniels) and later Halunen Law, he knew he wanted to apply the same work ethic that made him a successful runner to efforts that increased equity, brought people together, and made a real difference in the lives of fellow Minnesotans. He became an active community organizer. In 2011, he organized the first Big Gay Race, which raised over $250,000 to help defeat the hateful constitutional amendment against marriage equality. He also became involved in advocacy for the homeless, including helping tenants who lost their homes to the North Side tornado. In 2012, the City of Minneapolis honored him with its inaugural Martin Luther King, Jr. Award for his civil rights work.
In 2013, he successfully ran for City Council in Minneapolis’ 3rd Ward, unseating a long-time incumbent, with a platform that championed constituent services, increasing residential growth, growing the number and variety of small and local businesses, getting affordable housing fully funded, and helping open a new community-based school to serve the growing number of families living near the central riverfront.
He is proud to have delivered on his campaign promises over the past four years. Under his leadership, the 3rd Ward has accounted for more than 65 percent of all growth in Minneapolis, affordable housing is funded at record levels, we have a new community-based school that is winning awards, we’ve seen record numbers of small business openings, and we’ve implemented substantial green space improvements that add value to public spaces. That’s just the beginning. He also led the way on dramatically reducing surface parking lots, fully connecting the Mississippi trail in Northeast, imposing fees that reduced air pollutant emissions, and implementing programs that have increased voter registration and engagement at record levels.
Islam Al-Aqeel, from Amman, Jordan, has worked in the humanitarian field for the past six years, providing mental health care for refugees, asylum-seekers and internally displaced persons in the Middle East. Islam completed her Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Jordan, and then started her career providing psychosocial support for Syrian children in Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan. Since joining CVT at the beginning of 2013, she has held several positions.
Islam began with our organization as a psychosocial counselor, providing trauma healing services for primarily Iraqi and Syrian refugees. Through her leadership and work with torture and war trauma survivors at CVT Jordan’s Amman and Zarqa centers, Islam was promoted to senior psychosocial counselor, and later became one of the team’s first associate psychotherapist trainers. In 2017, Islam helped CVT launch two major new initiatives in the region. Now a psychotherapist/trainer and project representative, Islam has traveled to Turkey and Iraq to further expand, design, implement and share CVT’s programming. In Iraq, she provided trainings and capacity-building to Iraqi Kurdish rehabilitation organizations while also delivery psychoeducation in villages to marginalized groups affected by da’esh (ISIS) and historical persecution. Currently, Islam leads an innovative new initiative to expand trauma rehabilitation, staff support, and access to justice for Syrian survivors and civil society throughout the region.
Parking for the 2018 Restoring Hope Breakfast will be validated at The Depot Minneapolis. You will receive your ticket for The Depot hosted parking at registration. Valet parking will be available in the front of the hotel off of Washington and 3rd Avenue for $18/hour.
Table Captains are supporters and advocates for the work and mission of CVT. Captains host a table of ten at the Restoring Hope Breakfast and invite others in their community to join them.
The Breakfast is free to attend, and so is being a Table Captain! Check out the Table Captain Toolkit and contact Laura Kuhlmann at firstname.lastname@example.org or 651.209.3198 to get started on your table today!
If you would like to become a sponsor for the Restoring Hope Breakfast, please contact Laura Kuhlmann at 651.209.3198 or email@example.com.
Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, all donations made at the Restoring Hope Breakfast go directly toward healing and rebuilding the lives of survivors and their families.