April 2019 Newsletter Issue I
IAWF Celebrates First Iranian American "Women of Influence" Soirée

(Photo Credit: Ebrahim Safi)

On April 13, 2019, The Iranian American Women Foundation (IAWF) held its very first annual gala to honor 15 outstanding women of Iranian heritage in Los Angeles' prestigious Beverly Hilton. Fifteen Iranian American visionary women with outstanding records of contribution and success in law, arts, business, community service and philanthropy were awarded at the 2019 inaugural "Women of Influence" Soirée. By organizing the gala, IAWF celebrated the achievements of phenomenal women who have made a difference in their community, in society and in their country and it also gained much-needed attention and support for its popular mentorship program and future scholarships for Iranian American young generation. As Mariam Khosravani, IAWF Founder had envisioned for the it's inaugural gala, the celebration was conspicuously successful in "recognizing the accomplishments of these women who have been influential in their area of expertise and have made a difference in people's lives locally and at a global level". Ms Khosravani stresses "we wanted to bring the community under one roof". IAWF expresses its utmost gratitude to Asieh Namdar who took the helm of our event as the Master of the Ceremonies. Ms. Namdar, an anchor with the CGTN America in Washington DC is a great supporter of the IAWF mission. The participants greatly enjoyed performance of K-von, popular Iranian American TV host and comedian. On the sidelines of the gala, a silent auction was held, and the guests had a chance to participate and bid. An all women band headed by Mona Tavakoli, LA-based drummer and performer played during the night of celebration.  IAWF expresses its utmost appreciation to Ms. Zaza Saleh and Ms. Soheila Adelipour, as the co-chairs of the gala. We are forever grateful to our LA Planning Committee Members and appreciate their time and dedication: Soheila Adelipour, Josaine Cohanim, Marjaneh Hashemi, Roya Mashayekh, Nooshin Meshkaty, Soheila Motamed, Sunny Nassim, Marjan Rajabi, Yeganeh Saleh, Zaza Saleh and Marjan Zohoury. "Women of Influence Soiree" was an inspiring and heartwarming gathering where hearts and minds worked to make a brighter future for the new generation of the Iranian American community. We appreciate our young volunteers for their time and dedication to the IAWF mission.               
  IAWF in the NEWS

(Photo Credits: Ebrahim Safi)
Contributions, achievements and services of 15 Iranian American women in arts, business, philanthropy and community services were awarded by IAWF in Los Angeles. The very first "Women of Influence Soirée" was covered by numerous media outlets and put a spotlight on outstanding success of the Iranian women in the United States and their services to the community.  About 400 distinguished guests from across the United States participated at the celebration and supported the organizers who aim to inspire, empower and connect women.  The proceeds of the very first IAWF gala will go to assist and sponsor students and their educational path. You can review the coverage of the April 13, 2019 event in Santa Monica Daily Press , in Bevery Hills Courier , in Beverly Press, in Voice of America You can watch the video of the 15 outstanding honorees here   

  SAVE THE DATE - June 2, 2019

Iranian American Women Foundation is hosting its 18th Iranian American Women's Leadership Conference. The conference will take place at the San Francisco Airport Marriott Waterfront on June 2, 2019. It will feature speakers from various industries sharing their empowering stories. This event will be a great opportunity to connect with members of the IAWF community.  You can register and purchase your tickets here .
Azadeh Khalili
New York
Azadeh Khalili is an innovative social change agent and policy maker with extensive experience in government, philanthropy and the non-profit sector. She has worked for over 20 years to advance progressive policies and to create better conditions for marginalized communities, including in the field of human rights, sexual and reproductive rights, and the rights of immigrants and low-wage workers. Ms. Khalili is dedicated to public service and creating sustainable large-scale change through the power of inclusion and collaboration. 

You can read more  here .
Shahrzad Ardalan
     Southern California
Shahrzad Ardalan was the producer and host of a popular radio show called, "Life is Beautiful" on 670AM-KIRN Radio Iran. In her show, Shahrzad dealt with a variety of Iranian-American issues, with a positive approach, covering a variety of topics, such as family matters, parenthood, health, and other day-to-day aspects of life. She is now the host of a weekly radio show called, "peyk e hafteh". Shahrzad is an active member of the community and has considerable experience working with social and charitable organizations. Shahrzad was  among the 15 visionary Iranian American women who received IAWF's "Women of Influence" award in Los Angeles  on April 13, 2019.  

You can read more  here .

 Shadi Razifar 
 Northern California
Shadi Razifard CPCC (Certified Professional Co-Active Coach) graduated college with a degree in Microbiology and Medical Genetics. For the last twenty years, she has held various sales and business development positions in named Biotechnology companies. She is highly respected amongst her peers past and present with a track record of success. ?She was introduced to the world of self-discovery and personal growth in 1992. She became fascinated by human behavior, and the driving force behind human actions and behaviors. Over the years she took part in many seminars, courses and workshops and continuously challenged herself to the next level of growth. The more she knew, the more she realized how much there was to be uncovered.

You can read more  here .

Circle of 1000s Featured Member
Angela Nazarian  is a noted speaker and best-selling author of three books: Life as a Visitor, Pioneers of the Possible: Celebrating Visionary Women of the World, and Visionary Women. Angella is the co-founder of two non-profits: Looking Beyond, an organization that raises awareness and funds for special needs programs and hospitals in the Los Angeles area. She is also the co-founder of VISIONARY WOMEN, a non-profit women's leadership organization in Los Angeles that brings together some of the most dynamic thought leaders in the country together for in depth conversations. Visionary Women's funds are targeted toward supporting Women's initiatives both nationally and internationally. Angella's passion for women's empowerment has led her to become a member of Women Moving Millions: a global community whose members pledge at least $1 million dollars to organizations that benefit women and girls.  

You can read more here .

Circle of Men

Dr. Sepi Hejazi Moghaddam has broad experience leading key components of strategic human capital plans in the public and government sectors. He has led the design of human capital policies, programs, and practices; and managed the implementation of highly effective, performance-based systems. Throughout his experience he has displayed strong acumen in areas of research methods, data analytics, emerging technologies, business development, program management, high-level negotiation and partnership strategy, data visualizations, performance reporting and education policy. Sepehr received a PhD from Columbia University and an MA from Stanford University. 
Shirin Neshat & Susan Deyhim artistic collaboration to reflect on silence imposed on  Iranian women

(Photo Courtesy of www.wire.in)
Susan Deyhim, Iranian American composer and vocalist has recently participated in a project with Shirin Neshat, renowned Iranian American visual artist at the Kochi Biennale Foundation in India. As a part of Ms. Neshat's video installation and her reflection on silencing of female performers in Iran, Susan Deyhim performed in a hall filled with empty seats and another screen showed a man singing by lip synchronizing while the camera shows his face, while his back is turned on an audience full of men who are appreciating the music. "The sounds and images from both screens take us deep into the gender divide in Iran. Neshat's work turns that schism inside out. We turn our heads from once screen to the other in disbelief" (The Wire. March 17, 2019).  The Fourth Kochi-Muziris Biennale was held in Kochi in India (December 12, 2018-March 29, 2019). You can read more about the project of the Iranian female artists represented by music and poetry in the 2019 Biennale here Ms. Deyhim and her continuous contributions to arts and culture was honored in the IAWF's first "Women of Influence Soirée" on April 13, 2019 in Los Angeles. We wish her more success in her future projects. You can read more about Susan Deyhim here.  
Book of the Month
Photo courtesy of Simon & Schuster


Samin Nosrat is a renowned Iranian American chef and author.  "Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat", her cookbook is the winner  of the James Beard Award.  Ms. Nosrat is listed on the Time magazine's top 100 most influential people of 2019.  She is an Eat columnist at  The New York Times Magazine  and the host and and executive producer of the Netflix original documentary series based on her book. In a question about the surprising aspect of such positive reaction, Ms. Nosrat stresses "I think the most surprising thing, honestly, is that I put so much thought into so many things that I thought no one would notice, but in some ways those little things are what seem to have resonated the most with people ... I wanted to put women front and center, and I wanted to make it about people who don't traditionally get on television, to get their stories told. I wanted to make sure it was gorgeous, but also accessible. I wanted to make sure that there were people of all different colors and backgrounds. And yet I didn't want to hit anyone over the head with it".  "Everybody loves Samin Nosrat", writes Amanda Shapiro in her interesting encounter with the Iranian American popular chef. "What to Cook", Ms. Nosrat's second cook book is set to be published popular soon.  Simin Nosrat has been active in raising awareness about social and ethical issues and has  raised more than $150,000 through bake sales for various disaster relief efforts in the Bay Area. She connected restaurant employees who'd been harassed with journalists. She's refused invitations to events that don't include chefs of color or that relegate them to panels on "ethnic" food. In her interview with Bon Apetite, Samin says "I'm literally the only brown person ever who's been given the privilege of talking about general cooking". SALT, FAT, ACID, HEAT has won 2018 James Beard General Cookbook of the Year, 2018 Fortnum & Mason about Debut Cookbook,  2018 IACP Cookbook of the Year, 2018 IACP Julia Child First Book Award , Sunday Times Food Book of The Year 2017 .  

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