David D. Cole is Law Professor at Georgetown University. After graduating from Yale Law School, Professor Cole served as a law clerk to Judge Arlin M. Adams of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Professor Cole then became a staff attorney for the Center for Constitutional Rights where he litigated a number of groundbreaking First Amendment cases, including Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397 (1989), United States v. Eichman, 496 U.S. 928 (1990), which established that the First Amendment protects flag burning, and National Endowment for the Arts v. Finley, which challenged the constitutionality of content restrictions on federal art funding. He continues to litigate First Amendment and other constitutional issues as a volunteer staff attorney at the Center.
He has published in a variety of areas, including civil rights, criminal justice, constitutional law and law and literature. He is the legal affairs correspondent for The Nation, a commentator on National Public Radio: All Things Considered, and the author of three books: Enemy Aliens: Double Standards and Constitutional Freedoms in the War on Terrorism (New Press, 2d ed. 2005); Terrorism and the Constitution: Sacrificing Civil Liberties for National Security (New Press, 3d ed. 2005) (with James X. Dempsey); and No Equal Justice: Race and Class in the American Criminal Justice System (New Press, 1999).
Enemy Aliens received the American Book Award and the Hefner First Amendment Prize in 2004. No Equal Justice was named Best Nonfiction Book of 1999 by the Boston Book Review, best book on an issue of national policy in 1999 by the American Political Science Association, and was awarded the Alpha Sigma Nu prize from the Jesuit Honor Society in 2001.
Professor Cole has received numerous awards for his civil rights and civil liberties work, including from the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of the Freedom of Expression, the American Bar Association’s Individual Rights and Responsibilities Section, the National Lawyers Guild, the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, the Political Asylum and Immigrants’ Rights Project, the American Muslim Council, and Trial Lawyers for Public Justice.
Danny K. Davis was chosen by the people of the 7th Congressional District of Illinois as their Representative in Congress on November 5, 1996. He has been a Member of Congress continuously since. Congressman Davis has distinguished himself as an articulate voice for his constituents and as an effective legislator able to move major bills to passage despite his relative lack of seniority. His initiative to quadruple the Access to Jobs funding in the 105th Congress, one of only two successful amendments to the transportation authorization bill; and his bi-partisan Community Renewal Act in the 106th Congress, designed to bring investment and jobs to economically impacted communities are examples of his successes.
Prior to entering the House, Congressman Davis served on the Cook County Board of Commissioners and the Chicago City Council. He has also worked for countless organizations as a community organizer, civil rights advocate, and a public health administrator and educator, earning hundreds of awards for his services. Currently, he sits on numerous committees including the Congressional Black Caucus and is a Regional Whip in the Democratic Caucus. Congressman Davis has pushed legislation in Congress that protects civil rights and liberties and works with minority and low income communities.
Congressman Davis has joined many civil rights organizations and spoken out against the Patriot Act publicly. He was also one of the first members of Congress to speak out against the recent violence in Lebanon and propose a resolution that called for a ceasefire during the Lebanese conflict.
Eboo Patel, Founder and Executive Director of the Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), received his doctorate in the sociology of religion from Oxford University, where he studied on a Rhodes scholarship. Eboo is a regular guest on Chicago Public Radio and a frequent contributor to the Op-Ed pages of The Chicago Tribune. Additionally, he has written for The Harvard Divinity School Bulletin, Utne Magazine, The Journal of Muslim Law and Culture and National Public Radio (NPR) and has been featured on a range of media, including The New Republic, American Public Media, the BBC, and CNN.
Eboo serves on the Boards of the Aga Khan Foundation USA, the International Interfaith Center,CrossCurrents Magazine and Duke University’s Islamic Studies Center. He is also an active member of the Council on Foreign Relations’ Religious Advisory Committee and the EastWest Institute’s Task Force on American Muslims.
Eboo is a sought-after speaker whose addresses include the keynote speech at the Nobel Peace Prize Forum with President Jimmy Carter and the Baccalaureate Service Address at the University of Pennsylvania. He has given talks all over the world, most notably at the World Trade Center in Barcelona, the University of Cape Town, UNESCO Paris, Harvard University, and in Jordan at the personal invitation of Queen Rania. He was honored in 2005 by President Bill Clinton for his interfaith work.
He is co-editor of Building the Interfaith Youth Movement: Beyond Dialogue to Action (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006) and is currently writing a book on the role of religious youth in the 21st Century with Beacon Press. Eboo is an Ashoka Fellow, part of an elite network of social entrepreneurs with ideas that have the potential to change the world.
Leah Hope is a general assignment reporter for ABC 7 News, Chicago’s #1 station for news. She is an award-winning reporter who focuses on special investigations and other important stories affecting the lives of Chicagoans. She joined ABC 7 in 1997 and served as the co-anchor of ABC 7 News This Morning until 2001.
Prior to joining ABC 7, Hope worked at KATU-TV, the ABC affiliate in Portland, Ore. At KATU-TV, she anchored weekend evening newscasts and reported during the week. Previously, she held the same positions at WISH-TV in Indianapolis, Ind. Hope began her broadcasting career as a general assignment reporter at WBOC-TV in Salisbury, Md.
Hope’s work covering important issues in the African American community has been honored on both national and local levels. In 2003, she won two awards from the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) for reports on a group of “Lost Boys” attacked by a Chicago gang and changes in the cosmetic industry that reflect the changing face of America. The NABJ Chicago Chapter awarded Hope the 2003 Russ Ewing Excellence in Journalism Award and recognized her again with the 2004 Excellence in Enterprise Journalism Award for a series of reports on affirmative action.
Hope received an Emmy award for the half-hour primetime special, “9/11/02 The New Homeland.” She contributed to “People, Places, and Things You Should Know: Women in Science and Technology,” which won the 2001 Gracie Award from American Women in Radio and Television. Hope has been awarded four Peter Lisagor Awards, given by the Society of Professional Journalists, for stories ranging from breaking news coverage of the fire at Cook County Administration Building to the escape and subsequent capture of prisoners in Indiana.
Hope serves as a visiting faculty member at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies in St. Petersburg, Fla. and participated in the 2001 AIDS Ride from Minneapolis to Chicago. She is a member of the Investigative Reporters and Editors Association, the National Association of Black Journalists, American Women in Radio and Television, the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the Museum of Contemporary Art and Instituto Cervantes of Chicago.
Hope received her B.S. degree in Broadcast Journalism/Political Science in 1989 from Syracuse University in New York. She is the great-granddaughter of John Hope, the first African-American president of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Ga.
Hope is married and resides in the Chicago area.
Azam Abdul Azeem completed his Bachelors of Science in Economics at Northern Illinois University and is currently working on attaining his CPA license at College of DuPage. He also studies classical Arabic at Darul Qasim in Lombard, IL and has begun memorizing Qur’ân to complement his Arabic studies.
Azam Azeem is a social activist and tireless supporter of various community causes contributing to the fight against civil rights abuses, the fight against poverty and homelessness, and the fight against ignorance and illiteracy. He has been a longtime key volunteer for many community-based organizations that take up these causes including the CIOGC, IMAN, III&E, CAIR-Chicago, and Averroes Academy.
On the weekends he serves as one of the primary organizers of the CPSA Weekend Islamic School in Lombard, IL where he has been actively facilitating the Islâmic and Qur’ânic studies programs for three years. He is currently working at Sun Chemical in Northlake, IL as an accountant and is a lifelong Chicagoland resident. Azam likes spends his free time playing basketball with the youth at the Islâmic Foundation of Villa Park and he is also a big fan of YouTube.
Faisal Rafee Khan is a published columnist and has been an Assistant Editor of two International newspapers in Caucasus region. He worked closely with US Embassy Press Secretary on various assignments related to political, economic and social issues in the Republic of Azerbaijan. Furthermore, Faisal has experience working with UN and NGOs on matters related to healthcare and social programs for women and orphans.
Faisal has a strong multicultural background in which he provided leadership role for different collegiate organizations. Presently he is an active participant in interfaith dialogue. He is a program volunteer-consultant for Nonprofit Empowerment Group.
Faisal has over 6 years of experience in small business development, management and marketing. Recently he was a Vice President in the sales department for a fast food franchise.