Iffat Hameed, MBE, Mohammed Amin MBE and Adil Ray, OBE
A renowned cancer scientist, a TV comedian, a teacher and graffiti artist are among sixteen Muslims (2 CBEs, 3 OBEs, 9 MBEs and 2 BEMs) celebrating recognition in the Queen’s Birthday Honours last month. 90 people from a BAME background were named in the honours list this year, the greatest ever number, among them are seventeen members of the British Jewish community (1 Damehood, 3 CBEs, 7 OBEs, 5 MBEs and 1 BEM) as well as 30 members of the Hindu and Sikh communities (2 CBEs, 6 OBEs, 17 MBEs and 5 BEMs).
Acclaimed Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) scientist Professor Nazneen Rahman, has been awarded a CBE for her services to medical sciences, she is one of only three Muslim women honoured this year.
Rahman heads ICR’s Genetics and Epidemiology division and the Cancer Genetics Clinical Unit at the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust. She qualified in medicine from the University of Oxford in 1991, completed a PhD in Molecular Genetics in 1999 and has been leading a research team in cancer predisposition at the ICR since 2002.
Her research aims to identify underlying genetic causes of cancer and to use this knowledge to improve diagnosis, treatment and prevention. She has particularly focused on cancers affecting women and children, identifying many cancer predisposition genes over the years. She currently leads the pioneering Mainstreaming Cancer Genetics programme, which is successfully increasing access to genetic testing for cancer patients through mainstream health services.
Rahman said: “I am humbled and delighted. It is a great personal honour to have my work recognised in this way, but more importantly it highlights the dedication of my team and many colleagues to make scientific discoveries and deliver real health benefits.”
Chief Executive of the ICR, Professor Paul Workman, said: “This is a truly well-deserved award. Professor Rahman is not only an exceptional scientist, but also a powerful advocate on behalf of patients and their families. She has worked tirelessly to ensure advances in our knowledge of cancer genetics improve the lives of people who are living with cancer or are at risk of the disease.”
Adil Ray, known for his British Comedy TV show, Citizen Khan, is to receive an OBE for his services to Broadcasting.
He said: “Many of our forefathers worked and lived as part of the British Empire and I think it says a lot about us as a community today and the progress we have made that we can be honoured like this.
“I feel incredibly fortunate and wish that we can all go on to follow our dreams.” Hanif Malik, Chief Executive at Hamara and former board member of Voluntary Action Leeds, is to be awarded OBE.
Malik, founder and CEO of the Hamara Healthy Living Centre, who has been working in the sector since 1998, is also a former board member and acting chair of Voluntary Action Leeds as well as holding a string of other board roles over the years in city.
Hamara has grown into one of the largest and most influential third sector organisations in the voluntary and community sector in Leeds, employing over 30 staff members and helping thousands of local residents every year. Speaking to The Muslim News Malik said, “The real motivation for our efforts comes from supporting those who are less fortunate than us and in attempting to make a difference to our communities.”
“I hope in some small way it will encourage others to continue striving to make society a better and more cohesive place and highlight that the Muslim community can make a positive contribution to wider causes.”
Birmingham graffiti artist, Mohammed Ali, who has created a tribute to boxing legend Muhammad Ali in the city, has been appointed an MBE.
Ali, whose so-called aerosol Arabic is influenced by both classical Islamic calligraphy and urban street graffiti is also a recipient of the 2009 The Muslim News Alhambra Award for Excellence in the Arts.
Speaking about his namesake, Ali said: “I feel like I’ve been in his shadow. Having a name like mine has meant that.. in awkward situations wherever I’ve travelled, mentioning my name just breaks the ice.”
Ali stated: “I say it’s kind of (fitting) really that all of this has kind of happened today.”
Seventy percent of all the honoured this year went to community workers. Among them is Mohammed Amin, founder and co-chair of the Muslim-Jewish Forum of Greater Manchester, who is to be an made an MBE for his services to Community Cohesion and Inter-faith Relations.
Amin is active in a number of other organisations including Chairing the Conservative Muslim Forum. He is also a patron and Chair of Donors of Curriculum for Cohesion, and a member of the Consultative Council of the Three Faiths Forum.
From 2012-2014 he served as a member of the Council of Salford University, but resigned to give more time to the Conservative Muslim Forum.
For 33 years Amin practised as a tax advisor. He also spent 19 years as a tax partner in Price Waterhouse, now PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC). He was the first Muslim to be admitted to the Price Waterhouse partnership in the UK. He specialised in international tax and the taxation of derivatives and foreign exchange, and for four years he led the firm’s UK finance and treasury tax network.
Before his retirement at the end of 2009, Amin was PwC’s head of Islamic finance in the UK and a member of PwC’s four person Global Islamic Finance Leadership Team. He has presented on Islamic finance around the world as well as advising the UK Government. From 2003 until he retired, Amin was an elected member of PwC’s 15 person Supervisory Board, responsible for overseeing the firm’s management and approving its accounts and all partnership admissions and withdrawals.
Speaking to The Muslim News Amin said, “Britain is my adopted country, and I regard it as my duty to make it a better place for everyone. That is what motivated me to help set up The Muslim Jewish Forum of Greater Manchester to bring Muslims and Jews closer together.”
The world of education was represented by Pakistan born Iffat Hameed who was awarded the MBE for services to education and the community in Sheffield.
The 58 year-old mother of two has been honoured for her exemplary work with young Asian girls in Sheffield. In her work in education spans 28 years her students, who often hail from deprived backgrounds have gone into higher education, achieving rewarding careers such as teaching, medicine, law and dentistry.
Hameed, of Millhouses, became the city’s first female Muslim magistrate in 1988 and has also worked voluntarily for BBC Radio Sheffield Asian Network service and is often heard talking about education, self-respect and the need to progress in the community.
Hameed who currently teaches at King Edward VII School, is also well known for her charity work joining Soroptimist International Charity in 2011.
“I am thrilled to have contributed to the change in attitudes surrounding education within Asian families, particularly girls who when I first started teaching, seldom went on to higher education,” she explained.
She told The Muslim News she was delighted to receive a letter from the cabinet office at the beginning of May. “I told my husband but we managed to avoid telling anyone else, although it was hard to resist the temptation. I am truly humbled and honoured that my life’s work within the community has been acknowledged through this MBE award.”
Muslims in the Queen’s Birthday Honours:
Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE): Hon Alderman Allah Yar Mushtaq Lasharie, for political service & charitable services in Pakistan through the Jhok Aid Project. Professor Sabera Nazneen Rahman, Head of Genetics & Epidemiology, Institute of Cancer Research & Head of Cancer Genetics, The Royal Marsden, For services to Medical Science.
Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE): Adil Ray, Actor, Radio & Television Presenter, for services to Broadcasting. Hanif Malik, CEO, Hamara, for services to Sport & the community particularly in Yorkshire. Shaista Gohir MBE, Trustee & Chair, Muslim Women’s Network UK, for services to Gender Equality & Women’s Rights.
Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE): Anwar Kassim, Director, Milton Keynes Islamic Arts & Culture, for services to Inter-faith Relations & the community in Milton Keynes. Iffat Hameed, Teacher, King Edward VII School, Sheffield, for services to Education & the community in Sheffield. Issam Abbas Horshi, Managing Director, The White Horse Hotel, for services to the Tourism Industry in Northern Ireland. Jewel Miah, for voluntary services to British-Bengali Football. Mohammed Akhlak Rauf, Manager, Meri Yaadain (My Memories) Dementia Team, City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council, for services to People with Dementia & their Carers. Mohammed Ali, Street Artist, for services to Art & Community Cohesion. Mohammed Amin, Founder Member & Co-Chair, Muslim Jewish Forum of Greater Manchester, for services to Community Cohesion & Inter-faith Relations in Greater Manchester. Taiyabur Rahman Chowdhury, Lately Adoption Social Worker, Bradford City Council, for services to Children & Families. Usman Munshi, for services to Community Cohesion & Engagement in Lancashire.
British Empire Medal (BEM): Rehana Khan,Manager, Shakti Day Centre for Asian Elders & the Bharosa Domestic Abuse Service, for services to Vulnerable People in Birmingham. Shahzada Saleem, for services to the Sport of Stone Lifting.