Nakita Valerio (Editor-in Chief for RSS-Journal and Research Director, Institute for Religious and Socio-Political Studies) is an award-winning writer, researcher, and Muslim community organizer based on Treaty 6 territory, Amiskwacîwâskahikan (Edmonton, Canada). She is a graduate in history and Islamic-Jewish studies from the University of Alberta and has been a research fellow with the Tessellate Institute, the Institute for Religious and Socio-Political Studies (I-RSS), the Edmonton Council of Muslim Communities (ECMC) and Mercy Mission Canada (MMC). Nakita also acts as an academic strategist/mentor for graduate students in the disciplines of history, religious studies, sociology, and social work. She has worked as an academic copy-editor in the social sciences and humanities since 2014. Nakita serves as an advisor to the Chester Ronning Center for the Study of Religion and Public Life at the University of Alberta Augustana Campus. Nakita is honoured to be the Research Director for I-RSS, serving both Muslim and research communities across Canada.
Professor Muna Saleh (RSSJ Editorial Board Member) is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Education at Concordia University of Edmonton. Drawing upon her experiences as a Canadian Muslim woman, mother, educator, and researcher, Muna’s doctoral research was a Killam Trusts-funded narrative inquiry into the experiences of Canadian Muslim girls and their mothers. Prior to engaging in graduate studies, she was an elementary and secondary school teacher and leader. Her research interests include multiperspectival narrative inquiry, mothering and motherhood, conceptions of curriculum, familial curriculum-making, and research alongside children and youth with exceptionalities and their families.
Dr. Sabreena Ghaffar-Siddiqui (RSSJ Editorial Board Member) is an award-winning public speaker, media pundit, researcher, and human rights advocate. She is currently a professor of sociology and criminology at Sheridan College and a diversity equity inclusion/policy consultant. Focusing in the areas of migration, race/ethnicity and ethno-religio diasporic identity, Dr. Ghaffar-Siddiqui’s research has explored the ways in which Western Muslim communities navigate their social worlds amidst rising Islamophobia and how intentional community thirds spaces help facilitate integration and belonging for those feeling “spiritually homeless”. Dr. Ghaffar-Siddiqui’s expertise are sought in academic, public, and political forums worldwide and she is regularly interviewed by major media outlets, including the New York Times, CBC News, CTV News and others. Dr. Ghaffar-Siddiqui has served on the boards of The Pluralist Foundation and The Canadian Council of Muslim Women Toronto, is on the advisory boards for Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and the Canadian Muslim Vote, and is the co-founder of Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom Canada. Dr Ghaffar-Siddiqui also volunteers her time as a Prince Charles’ Trust mentor for youth in the U.K.
Elisabeth Hill (Research Assistant and Academic Editor) is a researcher, writer, and editor living on Treaty 6 territory in Edmonton AB. She holds a BA in Art History from the University of Victoria and an MA in History from the University of Alberta. In addition to extensive writing and copy-editing experience, she has worked as a curatorial assistant and public programming coordinator at the Art Gallery of Alberta and as a research assistant to multiple projects at the University of Alberta. Elisabeth is currently pursuing an MSc in Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Alberta.
Romaisa Hameed (Graphic Design and Copy Editing Intern) is a University of Toronto undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Religious Studies. She has an interest in politics, both at home in Canada and globally, as well as academic writing. Romaisa is passionate about social justice, specifically issues regarding economic inequality, human rights, and mental health awareness.