About NIAC Action

 

NIAC Action is the grassroots, civic action organization committed to advancing peace and championing the priorities of the Iranian-American community. We are a nonpartisan nonprofit and the 501(c)4 sister organization of the National Iranian American Council, which works to strengthen the Iranian-American community and promote greater understanding between the American and Iranian people.

NIAC Action works to maximize the political influence of Iranian Americans and the pro-peace community to ensure we have a powerful voice on the issues that matter to us most. We utilize three tools: direct lobbying efforts in Washington, grassroots advocacy led by NIAC Action Chapters nationwide, and organized engagement with political candidates by NIAC Action members.

Our goal is to strengthen U.S. diplomacy with Iran to advance peace and human rights, promote greater openings between the American and the Iranian people, protect civil rights and opportunities for Iranian Americans at home, and support candidates who represent our community’s values. We accomplish this mission by leveraging the resources of the Iranian-American and pro-peace community, the talent of our grassroots leaders, and the political expertise of our Washington, D.C. staff.

To ensure our community has a powerful voice in the political process, NIAC Action provides its members with top caliber political resources and guidance, powerful advocacy tools and civic trainings, and grassroots leadership development.

NIAC Action is supported by its members in the Iranian-American and pro-peace communities, and by prominent U.S. foundations. We do not receive any funding from the Iranian government or the United States government.

 

What We Stand For

Discriminating against people on their ethnicity or country of origin is anathema to the ideals that make America great. NIAC Action works to fight back against such discrimination and ensure that the civil rights of Iranian Americans and Iranians in the U.S. are protected. NIAC Action is working to repeal a law barring Iranian dual nationals and travelers to Iran from participating in the Visa Waiver Program. This discriminatory law could provoke reciprocal restrictions that turn many Iranian-Americans into second-class citizens when traveling abroad.
The only way to successfully resolve our serious differences with Iran is through direct diplomatic engagement. The historic nuclear accord reached in 2015 demonstrated the power of diplomacy to resolve seemingly intractable problems. Now, the U.S. and Iran should expand bilateral and multilateral engagement beyond the nuclear issue with the aim of resolving all issues of deep concern as well as addressing potential areas of mutual interest. At the same time, we must resist the efforts of hardliners who seek to undermine the nuclear accord and to put the U.S. and Iran back on a path towards a war that would be disastrous for U.S. national security, for the American and the Iranian people, and for human rights and democracy in Iran.
The Iranian people, not Iran’s government, have suffered the most under the pain of broad sanctions. The U.S. should seek to lift sanctions — including under the U.S. trade embargo — that contribute to humanitarian suffering inside Iran; undermine Iran’s middle class, civil society and private businesses; and prevent bridges from being built between Americans and Iranians. The potential of Iranian society is great, and both Americans and Iranians will benefit from the lifting of these sanctions.
Iran’s government must be accountable to its human rights obligations and to the aspirations of the Iranian people. While it is up to the Iranian people to decide the direction of their government, those on the outside can support human rights by supporting effective tools like direct diplomacy and multilateral human rights mechanisms, while preventing harmful actions like war and sanctions.

 

 

Staff

Jamal
Jamal joined NIAC in 2009 as Policy Director and serves as NIAC Action Executive Director. He previously worked as a Policy Advisor in the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

JAMAL ABDI

Executive Director

Nicole
With extensive experience in finance and administration, Nicole joined the NIAC team in May 2019.

 

NICOLE ATAEI

Director of Finance and Administration

Ryan
An integral member of NIAC’s policy staff since 2013, Ryan monitors legislation, conducts research and writing, and coordinates advocacy efforts.

 

RYAN COSTELLO

Policy Director

Donna
A veteran of campaigns to protect the environment, consumers and mobilize voters, Donna is now working to organize and empower Iranian Americans across the country.

 

DONNA FARVARD

National Organizing Director

Hamid
Hamid Jahangard joined NIAC in the spring of 2018 as the organization’s Senior Development Consultant.

 

HAMID JAHANGARD

Director of Advancement

Mana
With experience in communications and policy, Mana joined NIAC in January 2019 to amplify the voices of the Iranian-American community and NIAC’s work.

 

MANA MOSTATABI

Communications Director

Keaton
Keaton Quinn joined NIAC’s staff in June 2019 as an Advancement Associate.

 

KEATON QUINN

Advancement Associate

Assal
Dr. Assal Rad joined NIAC in January 2019 to organize the Iranian-American community and embolden the voices of Iranian Americans.

 

ASSAL RAD

Research Fellow

Nooshin
Nooshin joined the team in February 2019 as the Field Organizer for Pennsylvania.

 

NOOSHIN SADEGH-SAMIMI

Organizing Fellow

Sina
Born in Iran, Sina joined NIAC in 2018.

 

SINA TOOSSI

Senior Research Analyst

Arzo
Arzo joined the team in January 2019 to build NIAC’s political power and further advance its advocacy agenda

 

ARZO WARDAK

Political Director

Adam
A former U.S. Marine and Afghanistan veteran, Adam received his J.D. from Temple University, where he focused on international, national security, and immigration law.

 

ADAM WEINSTEIN

Senior Law and Policy Analyst

Ehsan
Ehsan joined NIAC in September 2017 and works to build support in southern California.

 

EHSAN ZAHEDANI

Community Relations Manager

Our Board

  • Jamal Abdi – President
  • Dr. Shokooh Miry
  • Shayan Modarres – Secretary (Interim)
  • Yasmin Radjy
  • Max Safavi – Treasurer
  • Elections ongoing for the newest member of our board!