Syrian woman becomes 1st veiled judge in US

A Syrian woman took the oath of office to officially start her duties as the first veiled judge in the United States, elected from the state of New Jersey by the Supreme Court.

Nadia Al-Qahf, 50, assumed her position as the first veiled judge in the state of New Jersey after she was sworn in Saturday in a ceremony held in Paterson.

She was nominated by New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy a year ago as part of a list of 15 candidates, and accordingly, Qahf will serve as a judge in the Supreme Court in Passaic County.

Qahf will be the first veiled state judge in New Jersey in the United States, but not the first Muslim judge, as there are two other Muslim women serving in the New Jersey Supreme Court. They are namely Sharifa Salam and Kalima Ahmed.

The veiled judge moved to the U.S., accompanied by her Syrian family, when she was two years old. She previously worked as a lawyer specializing in family and immigration cases in Wayne.

She also held the position of President of the Islamic Center in the province of Pasiak, and a legal advisor in Wafa House Foundation. A non-profit organization concerned with domestic violence issues and social services.

Since 2003, Qahf has been serving as a member of the Board of Directors of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, New Jersey, which is a civil rights advocacy organization.

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