Who Am I?
"I am passionate about serving our community and ensuring all voices and concerns are heard and addressed." - Rima
I am a refugee, I am a daughter of Palestinian refugees, and I am granddaughter of refugees who were forced to flee their Palestinian homes during the war and violence of 1948. Both my parents have lived in the camps in Lebanon, specifically Shatila, and have lived through the wars in Lebanon. My family moved to the US, specifically Cincinnati, when I was 5 years old hoping for the American dream and a better life. My family struggled and we have lived through tough financial, social and emotional struggles, including racism and poverty. If it was not for the public schools, especially the teachers, I would not be where I am today. This is one major reason I want to give back to the public schools and serve our community, especially those that are struggling.
I am currently a faculty member at the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy and have been an educator, clinician (caring for people who survived the ICU, have long COVID and cirrhosis), and researcher for the past 16 years. I received my Doctorate in Pharmacy at the University of Cincinnati and post-graduate residency training at the University of Michigan. I have been a professor and clinician at several universities throughout my career. I have also been involved in various volunteering activities and local, state and national levels in medical and pharmacy organizations. I am also a well-respected educator and clinician, and received awards and acknowledgements such as the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy Excellence in Teaching Award and Fellow of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy.
I moved back to Ann Arbor almost 9 years ago, currently living in the Bryant/Pattengill, Tappan and Pioneer school district. I currently have 4 children (13, 10, 8, and 5 years old) with my oldest attending Tappan Middle School. We are a Muslim and multi-ethnic family (my husband is mostly of French heritage). I am also a very active member of the Muslim community and have served as the VP of the Board of Education at the Michigan Islamic Academy and member of the health advisory committee from the start of the pandemic, making tough decisions such as in person learning.