It is with a grief-stricken heart, and submission to God's will, that the Islamic Center of Southern California shares the news of the passing of our beloved leader, a pillar of our institution, Dr. Omar Alfi. He was 89 years old.
With all that our soul can muster, we ask Allah to grant him the highest level of paradise, shower His choicest mercy upon him, bless him manifold times for his righteous deeds (and there are many), and give him relief, happiness, and bliss for all that he created, nurtured, guided, and did in this life.
We express our deepest thanks to Allah for giving our community such a guiding light, a multi-faceted believer for generations to emulate.
We ask Allah to shower His comfort upon the family members and community who grieve his departure, and envelop us all with His mercy in this time of difficulty.
Dr. Alfi was a father, grandfather, great grandfather, husband, visionary, world-class geneticist, Muslim leader, civic leader, educator, dreamer, planner, inspirer, and so much more.
He was the embodiment of dignity, grace, patience, humility, faith, kindness, gentility, strength, and optimism.
Dr. Alfi and his beloved wife Azmerelda, who he leaves behind, immigrated to the United States in 1970 from Egypt. Along with Mrs. Alfi, Dr. Alfi had a vision for the Muslim community and was methodical in translating it into reality through planning, hard work, sacrifice, and faith.
In the 1970's and 80's and beyond, they grew and elevated the Islamic Center of Southern California; in the 1990's they created the New Horizon school system, which now has four campuses and has graduated thousands of students; in the 2000's he created an Islamic law chair at UCLA law school, as well as co-founded Bayan Claremont, an Islamic institution of higher learning, affiliated with the Claremont School of Theology.
These are mere highlights, any one of which would serve as a historic accomplishment for a single lifetime. He did all this while enjoying professional success in founding and growing the world class "Genetics Institute" (later to be named "Alfigen"), and becoming a leader in the field of genetics research.
Dr. Alfi was a renaissance man.
He leaves behind a legacy of inspiration in our hearts, motivating us who remain to stand on his giant shoulders and take the movement forward.