TORONTO, Feb. 23, 2016 – Film Commissioner and Director of Entertainment Industries for the City of Toronto, Zaib Shaikh, and interim President and Vice-Chancellor of Ryerson University, Mohamed Lachemi, will be the keynote speakers at the inaugural Muslim Awards for Excellence (MAX) Gala. The Gala will take place on March 24, 2016 at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Toronto.
The MAX Gala is an initiative to recognize Muslims from various professional spheres who have demonstrated significant achievement, leadership, and commitment to serving their community in Canada. The winners of six awards and six student scholarships will be announced at the Gala after a robust public nomination and application process.
“Canadian Muslims from all origins are thriving and succeeding in all sorts of career paths and fields,” says Shaikh. “Diversity is key to progress, and this is a great opportunity to celebrate that, and move beyond stereotypes.”
The MAX award nominees are professionals and organizations spanning law, medicine, finance, non-profits, academia and the arts. The pool is indicative of the broad contributions of Muslims to Canadian society.
Scholarships totaling $30,000 will be granted to six outstanding high school and university students. “I am pleased to be part of recognizing excellence by members of the Canadian Muslim community,” says Lachemi. “As accomplished individuals who also give back, the award and scholarship nominees demonstrate that they are excellent citizens as well as top achievers.”
Aazar Zafar, founder of MAX, says, “Zaib Shaikh and Mohamed Lachemi are shining examples of the Canadian Muslim community. Their achievements and contributions to their respective fields and to society at large align perfectly with the MAX vision. We are honoured to feature Zaib and Mohamed as keynote speakers at our first annual MAX Gala.”