SJA News

Colwell Speaker Series Welcomes Sabeeha Rehman and Khalid Rehman, M.D.

St. Johnsbury Academy's Colwell Speaker Series welcomes Dr. Khalid Rehman and author Sabeeha Rehman. Dr. Rehman is a medical doctor, humanitarian, and longtime advocate of Project Hospitality, and Sabeeha Rehman is the author of Threading My Prayer Rug, One Woman's Journey from Pakistani Muslim to American Muslim. Dr. and Ms. Rehman will speak on being Muslim in America after 9/11. The presentation will take place on Thursday, October 12 at 7:00 p.m. in the Mayo Center and is free and open to the public.

Dr. Rehman graduated from Nishtar Medical College in Pakistan in 1968 and immigrated to USA in 1969. After being trained in Hematology and Oncology at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center, he moved to Staten Island in 1975. He joined the medical Staff of the then St. Vincent's Medical Center (now the Richmond University Medical Center), Richmond Memorial Hospital (now the University Hospital South) and Doctors Hospital. He was appointed the Chief Div. of Hematology-Oncology at SVMC and Assistant Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College in 1982. For most of the past four decades, he has served the Staten Island community through various professional and community organizations including Project Hospitality, working to connect the Muslim community of Staten Island to the larger Staten Island community. Dr. Rehman has also served on the board of directors of the SI unit of the American Cancer Society, the Visiting Nursing Service, Doctors Hospital, The Richmond Memorial Hospital, the Muslim Majlis of Staten Island and is the Founder of the Pakistan Cultural Association of Staten Island. He is the past President of the Richmond County Medical Society and the Academy of Medicine of Richmond and the past Medical Director of the Richmond Hospice. Dr. Rehman has retired from the practice of medicine and now serves as the Chair of the Awareness and Advocacy Committee of the National Autism Association New York Metro Chapter serving the five boroughs, Long Island, and Westchester.

Sabeeha Rehman is the author of the memoir Threading My Prayer Rug. One Woman's Journey from Pakistani Muslim to American Muslim, published in July 2016 by Arcade Publishing. The book received Honorable Mention in Spirituality, by the San Francisco Book Festival Awards 2017. It was listed as Top-10 Religion and Spirituality Books 2016, by Booklist; and Top 10 Diverse Nonfiction Books 2017, by Booklist. Excerpts of the book were featured in the Wall Street Journal, and she is a contributor to the Houses of Worship column of the Wall Street Journal.

Ms. Rehman was born and raised in Pakistan. She came to the United States in 1971, after a hurried arranged marriage to a Pakistani doctor in New York. With a bachelor's degree in Home Economics, she settled into the life of a homemaker. Once both her sons were enrolled full-time in school, she went back to school to get her Masters in Healthcare Administration, and began her 25-year career as a hospital executive. Her career spanned hospitals in New York, New Jersey, and Saudi Arabia. Ms. Rehman has spent the last several decades in engaging in interfaith dialogue with faith communities. In 2008, she co-founded the National Autism Association New York Metro chapter and served as its President from 2008-2011. She volunteered as the Director of Interfaith Programs at the American Society for Muslim Advancement; and served as the Chief Operating Officer at The Cordoba Initiative, a multi-faith organization dedicated to building bridges between Muslims and the West. She blogs on topics related to Pakistani immigrant and American Muslim experience at:

Glenn Ehrean, Director of the Colwell Center for Global Understanding, said, "I'm really looking forward to the Rehmans' visit. They will be drawing upon their experience as immigrants and Muslim Americans to help us to see more clearly how America as a whole changed since 9/11. I hope others in the community will take advantage of this excellent opportunity.