10 Experts on Unique Ways to Build Unity
A Daily Interview Series Feb. 10-19
Moderated by Dr. Vanessa J. Avery
Feb. 18 – Wajahat Ali
Wajahat Ali is a New York Times contributing op-ed writer, public speaker, recovering attorney, and tired dad of three cute kids. His work has appeared in Atlantic, Washington Post, Guardian, and the New York Review of Books and on CNN and Al-Jazeera.
He recently published his first book "Go Back To Where You Came From: And, Other Helpful Recommendations on Becoming American" offered by Norton. He believes in sharing stories that are by us, for everyone: universal narratives told through a culturally specific lens to entertain, educate, and bridge the global divides.
He also enjoys writing about himself in the third person. He frequently appears on television and podcasts for his brilliant, incisive, and witty political commentary. Born in the Bay Area, California to Pakistani immigrant parents, Ali went to school wearing Husky pants and knowing only three words of English. He graduated from UC Berkeley with an English major and became a licensed attorney. He knows what it feels like to be the token minority in the classroom and the darkest person in a boardroom. Like Spiderman, he’s often had the power and responsibility of being the cultural ambassador of an entire group of people, those who are often marginalized, silenced, or reduced to stereotypes. His essays, interviews, and reporting have appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, The Guardian, and New York Review of Books. Ali has spoken at many organizations, from Google to Walmart-Jet to Princeton University to the United Nations to the Chandni Indian-Pakistani Restaurant in Newark, California, and his living room in front of his three kids.