Coalition of South Florida Muslim Organizations
At the request of Mr. Khalid Mirza, chairman of the Muslim Communities Association of South Florida, several Muslim community members were invited to address the growing challenge of Muslim outreach and media relations. The group determined it was important to establish the Muslim presence in the local community instead of always reacting to events occurring in other parts of the world. In order to achieve this objective, the community leaders agreed to create a coalition of South Florida Muslim organizations and engage the media and other community institutions on a regular basis. COSMOS intends to keep media engaged, respond to especial need and to keep media informed of Islam/Muslim related events and activities in the future.
Nidal Hozein, Masjid AN-Noor
Dr. Mohsin Jaffer, Islamic Jaffaria Association
Irma Khoja, Islamic Jafferia Association
Khalid Mirza, Muslim Communities Association of South Florida
Komel Mirza, Muslim Student
Shabbir Motorwala, Miami-Dade County Asian American Advisory Board
Khalid Salahuddin, Masjid Al-Ansar
Mohammad S. Shakir, NUR Center
Syed Faisal, Crescent Chamber of Commerce/Muslim Communities Assoc of South Florida
Mehmet Ulutas, Miami-Dade County Asian American Advisory Board
Khurrum Wahid Esq., IFSF & EMERGE
The above Muslim leadership group began engaging the media and other community organizations in a series of meetings. They had strategic level discussions with the leadership of the Miami Herald, WFOR CBS-Channel 4, WPLG ABC-Channel 10, NBC 6, Miami-Dade County Community Relations Board, Anti Defamation League (ADL) and MCCJ. On April 29, 2010, the Coalition met the Miami Herald leadership: Myriam Marquez, Editorial Page Editor; Aminda Marquez, News Editor; John Yearwood, World Editor; and David Landsberg, publisher. The meeting renewed old relations and resulted in an understanding to afford more opportunities to Muslim opinion writers. Consequently, Mr. Farooq Mitha’s op-ed piece
appeared in the Herald. In a similar meeting with WFOR-CBS 4, the delegation stressed to focus on local community instead of defining Muslims/Islam by global incidence. The group also met Channel 10, and NBC 6 stressing the same concern that our permanent presence in the community and Muslims are equal contributors to the society. We told them that we are your viewers, and what you put
out on the tube affects us and our children—community’s children.
The management of all three networks, acknowledged the failure on their part to discover the community—explores Muslim presence in South Florida.