By Ray Hanania
Rumana Ahmed, who was named as the head of a new White House initiative to reach out to American Arabs and American Muslims, will be leaving her post at the Office of Public Engagement, headed by Valerie Jarrett.
A statement released by Ahmed offered few details raising concerns among American Arabs and American Muslims about her fate and also the fate of the initiative which was only launched last March. Ahmed was an executive assistant to Jarrett.
Ahmedâ€™s statement read:
â€œItâ€™s been an honor serving in the interim role as the liaison to the Muslim American and Arab American communities in my official capacity within the Office of Public Engagement (OPE). Today is my last day with OPE before I return in a month in a different capacity with another office here at the White House.â€
No information has been released yet on the new assignment or why the transition will not begin for another month.
Before her appointment to the Office of Public Engagement, Ahmed served as a senior analyst in the Office of Presidential Correspondence, working under President Barack Obama. Prior to joining the White House Staff, Ahmed worked at the Department of Commerce Office of Policy and Strategic Planning.
Ahmed is originally from Maryland and she has her degree from George Washington University in International Affairs concentrating on International Economics and Development.
Ahmed is the only individual on the Office of Public Engagementâ€™s 21 person staff with direct knowledge of American Arabs and American Muslims. She may be the only Muslim on the staff, but that could not be confirmed. Colleague Yohannes Abraham, who also works on the staff, is Ethiopian.
The new office reflects the deep commitment that President Obama and Jarrett have to diversity and the inclusion of minority groups that are traditionally ostracized because of extraneous politics and international conflict, such as Arabs and Muslims.
(Ray Hanania is a former award winning Chicago City Hall reporter and political columnist. He is managing editor of The Arab Daily News which seeks to be the newspaper of record for American Arabs.www.TheArabDailyNews.com.http://thearabdailynews.com/2014/05/20/white-house-rumana-ahmed-leaving-post-new-assignment/)