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Our Team

Mustafa Ally
Chair & Founding Director

Dr Mustafa Ally  is a senior academic at the University of Southern Queensland’s School of Management and Enterprise where he teaches and researches in the field of information systems and technology.

He worked with Kemal Omar on the vision of AMAN. He was awarded a USQ citation for outstanding contributions to student learning in 2016 for his leadership in this University wide professional development initiative, and in 2018 for outstanding contribution to learning and teaching.

Mustafa founded and co-ordinated the CCN Young Muslim Writers Awards and established the Queensland Muslim Historical Society and the Queensland Muslim Museum. He also compiled a book on The 100-year History of the Holland Park Mosque.

Dr Ally was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in the 2013 Australia Day Awards for his services to various communities and for his promotion of interfaith harmony. He was appointed a People of Australia Ambassador in the same year by the Australian Government ‘in recognition of (his) significant contribution to the community and the wider Australian society’.

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Founding Director

Kemal Omar is one of the original proponents of AMAN, recognising the need for a dedicated advocacy body for Australian Muslims.

He is an active member of the Muslim Summit steering committee, a joint endeavour representing over 160 Muslim organisations. Kemal has twenty three years experience in the IT industry designing and developing software solutions across a variety of industries. In the past seventeen years, he’s worked on ECM implementations as an architect, designer, developer, business analyst and project co-ordinator. During this time he has implemented ECM solutions using IBM FileNet, Microsoft Sharepoint© and Bizflow©.

Kemal has delivered solutions for organisations in Australia and South Africa including Suncorp, Hutchinson Builders, CoINVEST, Commonwealth Bank, Heritage Building Society, Rabobank, Queensland Health, Investec Bank, Wesfarmers and Standard Bank.

Mohamad Abdalla

Professor Mohamad Abdalla AM is the Founding-Director of the Centre for Islamic Thought and Education (CITE) at the University of South Australia. 

Previously, he was the Founding-Director of the National Centre of Excellence for Islamic Studies and the Griffith Islamic Research Unit (GIRU) at Griffith University.

Professor Abdalla is one of Australia’s most prominent and respected Muslim leaders, who held multiple distinguished community and academic posts, and received multiple civic awards, including the Ambassador of Peace Award, the Community Leadership Award, the Islamic Council of Queensland Community Service Award, and the Crescents of Brisbane Special Achievement Award.

His authored and co-authored books include Islamic schooling in the West: Pathways to RenewalLeadership in Islam: Processes and Solutions in Australian OrganizationsIslamic Science: The myth of the decline theory; and Islam in the Australian News Media.

Adel Salam

Adel Salman, is the current President of the Islamic Council of Victoria. He has been the Vice President of the Islamic Council of Victoria since October 2016 with the portfolio of Policy and Advocacy.

Born in Egypt to Egyptian parents, Adel is fluent in Arabic and English. His profession outside of ICV is electrical engineering by qualification; however, he has held Senior procurement roles in private industry and government. Adel’s goals are to change the narrative about Islam and Muslims, and to reverse the tide of Islamophobia. Through his leadership, ICV has established an Islamophobia Toolkit on their website, making it easier for victims in Victoria to seek support.

Adel wants to achieve a positive voice for Victorian-Muslims, a sense of belonging along with reduced discrimination. He is Director of Arkan Toledo which delivers special religious instruction at Victorian state schools and also a Board Director for Arkana Islamic College in Sydney NSW.  Adel continues to be a strong proponent of the importance of engagement in Australia’s democratic system. He is an active member of the Australian Muslim Community National Summit steering committee, a joint endeavour involving over 160 Muslim organisations.

Moustafa Kheir

Moustafa Kheir is a Sydney-based lawyer and a passionate advocate for social and political justice.

He is a co-founder and Principal Solicitor of Birchgrove Legal, a Sydney-based law firm that has been involved in some of the most high profile legal cases in Australia in the past decade, including those involving Muslim community members and issues. Moustafa has a passion for social justice and has advocated strongly on human rights, media, free speech and anti-terrorism legislation.

He has previously served on NFP boards, and has a strong series of partnerships with NFP organisations for whom he serves as legal and strategic advisor. His other key client cohorts at Birchgrove Legal include international corporations, high net worth individuals, NFP peak bodies and community leaders. 

Moustafa graduated from the University of New South Wales with a Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws and went on to work at an established boutique law firm. Feeling there was significant room in the legal sector to provide better and genuine care to clients, he developed a burning passion for doing law ‘the right way’ and co-founded Birchgrove Legal upon this ethos.

Ms Rita Jabri-Markwell
Legal Advisor

Rita is a solicitor at Birchgrove Legal and Advisor to Australian Muslim Advocacy Network (AMAN), defining the organisation’s overall strategy and being extensively involved in research, submissions, media releases and legal correspondence on behalf of the organisation.

She joined Birchgrove Legal in 2021, Rita brings rich experience in public policy and legal advocacy work gained from her professional experience to date. She has had a varied and storied career, giving her a broad set of skills which she uses to add extensive value to all her engagements After her legal education (gained at Adelaide’s Flinders University), Rita worked as Advisor to multiple political leaders, including Chris Evans (Senator for Western Australia and Shadow Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs) and Jenny Macklin (Australian Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs). She then worked in consultancy in the public sector, including in First Nations organising and advocacy, program funding and via the publication of position papers. One of the highlights of Rita’s work while in the parliamentary system was the National Apology to Australia’s Indigenous peoples.

Rita prides herself on her ability to develop innovative strategies that cut through complex policy problems and on creating long lasting relationships that create value for all stakeholders.