IMMC Project Team
In addition to IMMC'S staff and board of directors, there is a dedicated team of professionals working to make the Timbuktu Exhibition Project, as well as, the Moorish Spain Exhibition a success:
Timbuktu Exhibition Steering Team is designed to support IMMC'S community-driven model approach to the exhibit project. The team consists of a very active and diverse group that supports the project staff and the Travel Exhibition host agency in its planning and implementation of the project. The Steering team is both local and national and includes the following individuals, and is growing:
Owen Brooks, Co-Chair, Civil rights historian
Hisham Syed, Co-Chair, Independent Businessman
Dr. Geary Alferd, Physician
Karen Al-Turk, Businesswoman and former Teacher
Ruth Campbell, Educator (retired)
Dr. Gloria Giles-Dansby, Professor at Jackson State University
Dr. Susan Glisson, Director, William Winter Institute on Racial Reconciliation
Dr. Rubina Inamdar, Physician
John Horhn, Mississippi Senator
Dr. Hussien Kattani, Professor of Computer Science at Jackson State University
Jeanne Luckett, Museum Consultant and Exhibit Designer
Earl Martin, Businessman
Dr. Eugene Mclemore, Community Development Specialist
Alan Moore, Attorney
Bob Owen, Attorney Honorable Denise Owens, Judge
Abdul Rasheed, Musician
Sababu Rashid, Consultant/Education Liaison & Community Outreach Specialist
Dr. Steve Rozman, Dir., Tougaloo Center for Civic Engagement & Social Responsibility
William Sabree, Businessman
Dr. Steve Smith, Dept. of Religious Studies at Millsaps College
Alice Tisdale, Newspaper Publisher
Jimmie Travis, Civil Rights Activist
Rev. Dennis Williams, Minister
Irene Williams, Nurse
Sultana Ali, businesswoman, New York City
Aisha Al-Adawiya, Schomburg Center, New York City
John Franklin, Program Manager, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
Dr. Shakeela Hassan, Film Producer/Fundraiser & Co-Chair of Chicago Steering Team
Malikah Mohamed, Dir. of Sunnah Connection & Chair of Buffalo, NY
Abdul Rhamaan Muhammad, Consultant & Chair of Hartford, CT Steering Team
Abdul Malik Mujahid, CEO of SoundVision & Co-Chair of Chicago Steering Team
Carole Mumin, Businesswoman, Washington, DC
Ayesha K. Mustafaa, Newspaper Editor & Co-Chair of Chicago Steering Team
Samadah Nur, Businesswoman, Atlanta, GA
Ann Saunders, Artist & Businesswoman, Washington, DC
Aisha Waheed, Businesswoman & Community Activist, Tampa, FL
Maurice Weaver, Charity Specialist & former Media Specialist, Chicago Steering Team
Reshma Yunus, Businesswoman, West Coast (California)
Collaborating Institutions and Organizations
Mamma Haidara Memorial Library at Timbuktu, Mali, Cheikh Abdelkader Haidara, heir, director, and curator. The Haidara Library is the largest of 22 private libraries in the City of Timbuktu and 120 in the region. The Andrew Mellon Foundation and other international friends have enabled the library to construct a new permanent home for its collections, which opened to the public in 2000. Today the library holds over 9,000 ancient manuscripts and many printed books. This family library has been in the Haidara family since before the 16th century. The manuscripts for the Timbuktu Exhibit will come from the Haidara library. This is only the second time these manuscripts have left the continent of Africa and been on display in the U.S., with the first time being at the U.S. Library of Congress in 2003 to a limited audience. This is the first time the manuscripts will be on display to a national audience through a traveling exhibition.
Jackson State University is a nationally recognized four-year liberal arts historically black university (HBCU). It has been named the state's urban university and designated as doctoral/research intensive by the Carnegie Foundation. It is ranked second nationally by Black Issues in Higher Education in producing African American master's degree graduates in English, and sixth with master's degrees in biology and PhD.S in education.
Tougaloo College, a private, HBCU four-year liberal arts institution, founded in 1869 and known nationally as the Cradle of the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi. It ranked among the top colleges and universities in the nation and region by U.S. News and World Report and Changes Magazines. It also ranks as one of the top five historically black colleges and universities whose
Collections and Stories of American Muslims, Inc. (CSAM), Amir Muhammad, founder and President. CSAM was founded in 1996 as an Islamic Traveling exhibit, Archives, and Museum in America and abroad for preserving America's Islamic heritage and history
Communication Arts Company (CommArts), Jeanne Luckett, co-owner and lead designer for the Timbuktu Exhibition Project, along with partners Hap and Hilda Owen, has been in business for more than 30 years, and works with a team of designers, writers, producers, researchers, and museum specialists. The firm has designed and produced projects for every communications format over the years. The company's experience grew from designing trade show exhibits to three major projects recognized with several national awards. These include designing and producing media for the 14,000-square foot Mississippi Pavilion at the 1984 Louisiana World Exposition; designing a 12,000-square foot traveling exhibition for the United State Information Agency that toured the former Soviet Union for 22 months; and designing and producing the 20,000-square-foot exhibit hall and media for the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum. In 2001, CommArts entered into a five-year contract with the National Park Service to design exhibits for the agency's visitor centers throughout the country. CommArts has worked on a number other significant projects. CommArts designed IMMC'S Islamic Moorish Spain Exhibition.
Tariq Beard is widely considered to be the pre-eminent collector of 18th–20th century African American decorative arts, photography, rare books, unique documents, and other objects of aesthetic and historic interest. Beard will loan to the Timbuktu Exhibition Project the manuscript of the autobiography of Omar Ibn Said, the only extant autobiography in Arabic by an enslaved Sub-Saharan African in American. This manuscript was composed in 1831 by Said, who was a devout, educated Muslim scholar, enslaved on a North Carolina plantation from 1807.
Dr. Stephanie Diakite' is the conservator for the manuscripts at the Mamma Haidara Library and other manuscripts at Timbuktu. She is also the attorney for the Malian Government protecting the patrimonial issues for the manuscripts, as well as working closely with private manuscript owners protecting their rights. She is also a book artist. She also works with the Malian Association for Action Research for Development, a non-governmental organization (NGO) working in Timbuktu with manuscripts owners, as well as other countries in Africa.
Habeebah Muhammad is currently registrar/collections manager for the Anacostia Museum and Center for African American History and Culture at the Smithsonian Institution. She is also co-founder of the Collections and Stories of American Muslims (CSAM) and wife of Amir Muhammad. She will be bringing her expertise to the project through CSAM as a registrar and collections' specialist.
SoundVision, Inc., established for almost 20 years, is the U.S. leader in marketing and mobilizing American Muslims. SoundVision has produced more than 200 programs for television, home video, CD, as well as other multi-media formats, as well as several documentaries. It has designed and launched a number of marketing campaigns among Muslim Americans and other ethnic groups including African Americans and has been recognized by world media including ABC, Newsweek, the Toronto Star, the Dallas News, Voice of America and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Its website is among the top 3% websites in the world, with over 2,500 pages and more than 300,000 messages on its site, receiving more than ten million hits a month. SoundVision and its President, Abdul Malik Mujahid will provide marketing/promotion to the Muslim and African American communities and some of the multimedia elements of the exhibit.
Dr. Abdellatif Attafi holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in Education/French with a minor in Psychology and Sociology. For the last ten years he has researched and written in the area of North African literature; teaches a course on the Iberian Peninsula with emphasis on Islamic Art and Architecture, and developed a seminar for teachers and the general public on the Iberian Peninsula and the Middle Ages in collaboration with two other professors from the College of Charleston.,
Dr. Allan D. Austin is Emeritus Professor of English and Afro-American Studies (retired from Springfield [MA] College in 1999. His Ph.D. was earned at the University of Massachusetts in 1975. He has written and lectured on a wide range of Afro-American subjects, but most extensively on the early presence of African Muslims in the Americas. His publications include African Muslims in Antebellum America: A Sourcebook, 1984; "Introduction" to and editing of American Studies in Black and White: Selected Essays by Sidney Kaplan, 1997. He is presently working on an unmodernized edition of Martin R. Delany's Blake, or the Huts of America: A Tale of the Mississippi Valley, the Southern United States, and Cuba. He brings to the exhibit his pioneering work on enslaved African Muslims in Antebellum America.
Dr. Douglas B. Chambers holds a M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in Colonial American History and History, respectively. He is currently Assistant Professor of History at the University of Southern Mississippi, with a specialty in West African History, expertise in the making of the early modern Black Atlantic World, West Africa in the era of the transatlantic slave trade, comparative slavery (U.S., Africa, Caribbean) and African-American social and cultural history. He had two works in progress, Eboe, Kongo, Mandingo: African Identity Groups in Early America and Jamaican Runaway Slaves 1718-1817: A Compilation from Original Sources. He brings his extensive background in African and African-American history to the project.
Dr. Sylviane A. Diouf holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in Human Sciences from the Universite' Paris. She currently works with the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, specifically with The African American Migration Experience project. She is the author of Servants of Allah: African Muslims Enslaved in the Americas, the first book to retrace the religious, social and cultural story of the West African Muslims in the Americas during the era of the transatlantic slave trade. She has lectured extensively nationally on the early West African Muslim presence in the Americas. She was the on-camera expert of the PBS series: This Far by Faith: African-American Spiritual Journeys. She serves as the lead scholar on the Timbuktu Exhibition.
Dr. John Hunwick is Emeritus Professor of African History and Professor of the History and Literature of Religions at Northwestern University. He was born and educated in England. He holds a B.A. in Arabic and Ph.D. in Islamic Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. Some thirty years of his life has been spent in Africa between Somalia, the Sudan, Nigeria, Ghana, Mali and Egypt. He also taught Islamic history at the University of Ghana. He directed the following projects: the Centre of Arabic Documentation at the University of Ibadan, the Fontes Historiae Africanae on the International Academic Union, and the Institute for the Study of Islamic Thought in Africa, which he founded in 2001 at Northwestern University. He contributed articles to the Encylopaedia of Islam, and has published two large volumes of Arabic Literature of Africa (1995 & 2003); and wrote (and got published): Shari'a in Songhay, 1984; Timbuktu and the Songhay Empire, 1999; and The African Diaspora in the Mediterranean Lands of Islam, 2002.
Dr. Ali A. Mazruiholds a B.A. with Distinction from Manchester University in England, M.A. from Columbia University in New York, and PhD. From Oxford University in England. He is now Albert Schweitzer Professor in the Humanities and Director of the Institute of Global Cultural Studies, at Binghamton University, State University of New York. He is also Andrew D. White Professor-at-Large Emeritus and Senior Scholar in Africana Studies at Cornell University. He was Ibn Khaldun Professor-at-Large, Graduate School of Islamic and Social Sciences, Leesburg, Virginia. His more than twenty books include Towards a Pax Africana (1967), and thePolitical Sociology of the English Language (1975). His television work includes the widely discussed 1986 series The Africans: A Triple Heritage, (BBC and PBS). He brings to the project a global perspective and expertise on African history and the Americas.
Dr. Aminah B. McCloud holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in Islamic Studies from Temple University. She is an Associate Professor of Islamic Studies at DePaul University, has a broad range of expertise on Islamic Law and Muslim women with which, to include Islam in the African American experience. She is known nationally from her work African American Islam. She is among the few Muslim women Islamicists in the United States. She brings to the project her knowledge of the African American Muslim movement.
Dr. Sulayman Nyangis Professor of African Studies at Howard University. From 1975 to 1978 he served as Deputy Ambassador and Head of Chancery of the Gambia Embassy in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. He later immigrated to the United States and returned to academic life at Howard University and became department chair from 1986 to 1993. He also serves as co-director of Muslims in the American Public Square, a research project funded by the Pew Charitable Trust. He has written extensively on Islamic, African and Middle Eastern affairs. Two of his best-known works are, Islam in America and Islam, Christianity and African Identity. Dr. Nyang brings to the project an intimate knowledge of both African History and Muslims in Africa and America, as well as his broad experience as a diplomat. Consulting with other museums, such as the Smithsonian Institute, he also brings an understanding of how to translate academic scholarship to the general public.
Dr. Hakim Abdullah Quick holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in philosophy/African History and West African Islamic History from the University of Toronto. He is the author of Deeper Roots: Muslims in the Americas and the Caribbean from Before Columbus to the Present. He is a renowned Islamic activist scholar and African Historian and he brings the results of his research and study on the continent of Africa and in the Americas to the project.
Dr. Steve Rosenberg holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in Early Music (Performance of) from Prix de Virtuosite. He had edited a number of books. He is recognized as one of the world's foremost recording artists and exponents of early music, his repertoire covers the Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque eras. He is one of the collaborating professors with the seminar on the Iberian Peninsula and the Middle Ages with Dr. Abdellatif Attafi , wherein he presents the history of early music emphasizing the influences from North and West Africa, as well as perform, demonstrating the use of early music instruments, of which he plays more than 25 instruments. He founded and directs the Pro Musica Ensemble of Charleston, who has won acclaim in the U.S. and Europe. He is currently Chair of the Music Department of the College of Charleston. He brings his broad experience of early music and its performance to the project.
Audrey Shabbas holds a B.A. in Political Science and International Relations with an area concentration in the Middle East from the University of California at Berkeley. She has over 30 years experience in the field and is listed in "Who's Who in American Education." She has been a classroom teacher and has conducted more than 500 workshops and summer institutes for teachers. She has two publications: "The Arab World Studies Notebook," a reference tool which contains 540 pages of informative reading, activities and lesson plans; and "A Medieval Banquet In The Alhambra Palace," a 'how to' book with content materials for teaching across the curriculum; it involves not only the social studies, language arts, math, science and art departments-but the entire school-in putting on a medieval banquet and setting it in Islamic Spain. The state of Delaware has made it the required text for a required unit of study, called The First Renaissance in Europe: Islamic Spain. Ms. Shabbas is President of AWAIR (Arab World and Islamic Resources and School Services). She brings to the project her resources and expertise for the teacher training workshops and in the development of the curriculum resource unit.
Dr. Steve G. Smith holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in Religion from Vanderbilt and Duke Universities, respectively. He is Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies and Chair of the Religious Studies Department at Millsaps College. He regularly teaches a course on Judaism, Christianity, and Islam and is the author of "Abraham's Family in Children of Gebelaaw" (Literature and Theology, June 1997) as well as books and articles on philosophical issues in religious studies. He will serve as one of the exhibition's academic advisors in the field of Religious history.
Recreation of a period market place, part of the Islamic Moorish Spain Exhibit.
LEGACY OF TIMBUKTU
"In the last millennium an important global legacy was uncovered—the literate culture of AFRICA!"
This legacy lives in the extraordinary richness of historical manuscripts that still survive.