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IMAGH Inducts its Boards and Unveils New Goals for 2018

The Board of Directors of IMAGH with Chairman Dr. Maqbool Haq (left)

The Board of Directors of IMAGH with Chairman Dr. Maqbool Haq (left)

By Jawahar Malhotra

HOUSTON: The meeting in 2016 when the new Executive Committee was unveiled was on board the Star Cruiser after it slipped through Galveston Bay on a crisp Fall day. This year, the Indian Muslim Association of Greater Houston became landlubbers and held its Board meeting over lunch in the cozy upstairs private dining room ambiance of Maggiano’s Little Italy restaurant on Post Oak on Sunday, January 28.

The Advisory Board of IMAGH with Chairman Abeezar Tyebji (right)

The Advisory Board of IMAGH with Chairman Abeezar Tyebji (right)

It was big jump for a young, seven year-old group which has steadily made its presence felt in Houston’s panoramic fabric of diverse organizations. It has done so through multiple events each year and two other offshoots, Club 65 for seniors and SAYA (South Asian Youth Alliance) for young people. IMAGH’s signature event, the annual Eid Miland has gained quite a reputation for its inclusion of many groups even as it honors Islam’s major festival.

The Executive Team of IMAGH with President Munir Ibrahim (right)

The Executive Team of IMAGH with President Munir Ibrahim (right)

At the meeting, there were many faces familiar to the Indian community who were honored and many selected to the new Board of IMAGH and the Advisory Board and each was given a few minutes to describe their perspectives on working together as a team. Also in attendance was Adrian Garcia, the Democratic candidate for County Commissioner Precinct 2, who has become a friend of the community from his years as Harris County Sherriff. Garcia inducted the Board members with a swearing-in ceremony.

Former Harris County Sherriff and candidate for County Commissioner Adrian Garcia with IMAGH President Munir Ibrahim (right) and Advisory Board Chairman Abeezar Tyebji (left)

Former Harris County Sherriff and candidate for County Commissioner Adrian Garcia with IMAGH President Munir Ibrahim (right) and Advisory Board Chairman Abeezar Tyebji (left)

The emcee for the program was Cynthia Cisneros, a former news reporter at Channel 13 KTRK and now its Vice President of Community Affairs. The program began with welcoming statements by IMAGH President Munir Ibrahim who spoke of how IMAGH embraced its cultural diversity. He thanked the host for the luncheon, Dr. Maqbool Haq, who is also Chairman of the Board; Abeezar Tyebji, who is Chairman of the Advisory Board and jokingly referred to Latafath Hussain, whose brainchild was the creation of IMAGH, as “The Godfather”.

Each one of the Board members spoke about their efforts and especially Tasnim Vadva, who is this year’s Eid Milind’s Event Chair. Hussain welcomed all the new Board members and recognized those who have been influential in his life and efforts to get IMAGH going: Mariam Izza, Gordon and Sylvia Quan; Shakuntla Malhotra, Haq and Tyebji. Haq outlined two goals for 2018: to raise $10,000 for an annual Houston Science and Art Festival for Kids and a series of Discover Houston Walks run by the Advisory Board. Tyebji was ecstatic about how well recognized and respected IMAGH had become and the compliments he had heard at the recent Republic Day program at the Indian Consulate.

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