Global Deaf Muslim Canada (GDMC) is a non-profit organization led by volunteer efforts to provide Islamic knowledge to Deaf and Hard of Hearing members of the Muslim community in the form of American Sign Language (ASL).
Board of Directors
Director of Content
Muqriʼ and Ustādh Usman Siddiqui was born in Detroit, Michigan and grew up in Toronto, Canada. He has an ijāzah in the 10 Qirā-āt (ʻAshara Ṣughrā) from Shaykh Uthman Khan and an ijāzah in Ḥafṣ with Shaykh ʻAlaa Elsayed.
The Administrator and Youth Director of the Canadian Dawah Association, he teaches tajwīd at ISNA Canada and also organized many youth programs and events there.
Usman majored in Speech Communication at the University of Waterloo and is now a local and international consultant on communication, works in admin roles, and manages several projects.
In the Classical Martial Arts, he studies Goju Ryu Karate-do through the chain of Gogen Yamaguchi, Okinawan Kobudo, Aiki-Jujitsu from the Daito Ryu system, Filipino Arnis, and Laido.
With a Bachelor of Economics from McMaster University, Mohammed also has his Taxation Certificate and CPA and CMA designation.
He believes that through strong inter-personal communication and involvement in the Deaf community, more people will be made aware of the challenges faced by Deaf Muslims, which will result in more opportunities for development.
Heba became involved with GDMC shortly after the first Annual Fundraiser in February of 2014.
She lends her extensive experience working with other organizations to GDMC and hopes that its steady growth will benefit the Deaf Muslim community.
Having also worked as a Team Leader for the US chapter, Zohaib has been a dynamic and active member of both the Canadian and American organizations for many years. He is a very simple, Allah-fearing, caring, talented and kind-hearted professional who, although is a modern thinker, also believes in good values set by our ancestors. Qualities he values the most in his life are his religious beliefs, morals and respect for his elders.
With a Bachelor of Science in International Business from Rochester Institute of Technology, Zoh is currently pursuing his Master of Public Administration at Gallaudet University in Washington DC, while also travelling with his family and friends – something that he loves to do.
As the Executive Director of GDMC, Zohaib hopes to engage the Deaf Muslim community especially in North American and Canada through various projects that will create more opportunities and help build a stronger community.
Chief of Operations
Born in Bombay, India, Suhail Kochra was elected as the chairman for the Pakistan Association of the Deaf (PAD) in 1987. When Global Deaf Muslim was first established in 2005, he became the Vice President and supported the US chapter for two years.
A few years later, he moved to Canada to improve his family business and has been serving GDMC as its Chief Operating Officer since its inauguration in 2013.
Event Manager & Volunteer Coordinator
Rana Hamdy is a York University graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology. While pursuing her undergraduate studies at York, she developed an interest in American Sign Language and took classes with the Canadian Hearing Society (CHS) before enrolling in the American Sign Language – English Interpreter program at George Brown College.
Now a George Brown graduate, Rana continues to engage herself within the Deaf community by volunteering with various organizations including the Canadian Association for Muslims with Disabilities (CAM-D) while also coordinating GDMC activities and managing its volunteers.
Through her efforts in collaborating with other similar organizations, she hopes that more people in the Deaf Muslim community will benefit from the available opportunities and that GDMC will be able to offer additional services in the long run.
Shahinda is a University of Toronto graduate and a professional in the Finance field. She attained her Accounting designation as CPA, CMA and is currently pursuing a certification in Project Management.
She has been a general member of GDMC since 2013 and became heavily involved in the organization shortly after. Her passion and dedication towards GDMC stem from her strong belief in equality and open accessibility for all members of the community.
Through her hard work and commitment, Shahinda strives to set a strong example of the vital role women play as caregivers and professionals to develop a society mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
Farrah is a Mechanical Engineering graduate from George Brown College where she is currently pursuing a post-graduate certificate in Project Management. She completed most of her formal education in Dubai, including two and a half years of Mechanical Engineering in the American University of Sharjah before moving to Toronto in August 2013.
After attending GDMC’s first Annual Fundraiser in February 2014, Farrah was motivated to get more involved with the organization and joined it shortly after. She now hopes that through the continuous development of GDMC’s image and presence in the community, the general public will be made more aware about the organization, which – in return – should bring more support to enhance the accessibility options for the Deaf Muslim community.