Community Board 11 appoints first Muslim to executive board

Community Board 11 made history on Sept. 24 when it elected the first Muslim, Yahay Obeid, to its executive board as first vice chairman.
courtesy of Yahay Obeid

Community Board 11 made history on Sept. 24 when it elected the first Muslim, Yahay Obeid, to its executive board as first vice chairman.

The seat became open when Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. removed former first vice chair Anthony Vitaliano for sexist comments, according to a report from THE CITY.

Obeid was appointed as a member of CB11 in 2016 by Diaz. He is chairman of the Public Safety and Ethics and Disciplinary Committees, director of outreach for the Bronx Muslim Center on Rhinelander Avenue and a Morris Park resident.

At Thursday’s virtual meeting, Obeid said that he is ready to take on his new role.

“I think we have a very important job to do,” he said to the board. “We signed up for this community service.”

Edith Shkreli, who is on the Ethics and Disciplinary Committee with Obeid, praised his election.

“He’s very thorough and patient,” she said. “He spends a lot of time outside of our schedules to make sure he gives his all.”

Obeid was born in Yemen and migrated to the United States at the age of 8. He works for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), starting his FAA career as an air traffic controller at John F. Kennedy (JFK) International Airport in 2008. He received his Bachelor of Science in airline management from the Vaughn College of Aeronautics in 2005 and earned his private pilot license in 2003.

He was an adjunct professor at Vaughn College from 2009 to 2012.  Obeid previously worked for the Transportation Security Administration at LaGuardia Airport and Orlando International Airport from 2005 to 2008 and for Swissport International Ltd. at JFK from 2004 to 2006.

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