Somia El-Rowmeim is a Yemeni-American organizer, educator, and mother. She currently serves as the Adult Education and Women's Empowerment Program Manager at AAANY. She has been a part of the AAANY family since 2011 when she joined as a volunteer and has continued to serve her community as a dynamic leader, English language instructor, activist and friend. Somia's passion for community organizing, education, and women's empowerment began as a student leader at Sana'a University in Yemen, where she earned a Bachelor's degree in Physics and Mathematics. Since then Somia has led Brooklyn's Arab American community in voter registration drives, town halls, small group meetings, and actions and rallies of local, national, and international import. Somia doesn't shy away from speaking truth to power, whether at the Women's March on Washington, protesting Trump's Muslim Ban, holding city council members accountable to their constituents, defending the rights of domestic violence survivors, or protesting Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman's visit to New York City for his continued war in Yemen. In addition to her work as an advocate and an educator with AAANY, Somia also serves as the vice president of Yalla Brooklyn, an initiative aimed to increase voter turnout of Brooklyn's Arab community. She is also the founder of the Union of Arab Women, a member-led organization encouraging the civic engagement, economic empowerment, health, and education of New York's Arab women. In her spare time(if you can imagine there is any), Somia enjoys spending time with her family, drinking coffee with her dear friends, and traveling around the world.
Mark Marroquin joined the AAANY team in 2018 as an Adult Education Associate. He was raised in New Jersey and received a Bachelor of Arts from Rutgers University in Arabic Language, Literature and Linguistics. Mark travelled to Amman in the summer of 2016 and took intensive Arabic Language courses to strengthen his skills. In 2018, he served as a volunteer teacher at the Learning for the Empowerment and Advancement of Palestinians (LEAP) program. He taught two advanced English courses as well as a creative writing course in the Bourj El-Chemali camp in Sour, Lebanon. When he’s not working, Mark’s interests include his family, cats, coffee, Ziad Rahbani, and Arabic and Latin American Literature.
Kyle Zarif is the Programs Associate and Americorps member for 2018-19 at AAANY. He graduated from Fordham University in May 2018 with a Bachelor’s in International Studies and History. Kyle comes from a family of Arab and European immigrants and is passionate about serving the local Arab community in Bay Ridge and NYC.