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Abdelall, Brenda

Fall 2020

333 Hutchins Hall

​Brenda F. Abdelall the founder and president of Bridge Strategies, a nonprofit and philanthropic consulting firm. The firm serves at the nexus of the nonprofit community and the philanthropic sector. Bridge Strategies seeks innovative ways to bolster philanthropic giving to the critical needs of the Arab American and Muslim American nonprofit sectors, while also providing strategic programmatic counsel to nonprofits.

Professor Abdelall started her career practicing law at Sidley LLP, where she was a member of the healthcare regulatory and public policy group. She recently served as a director of a national civil rights organization serving the American Muslim community. She also taught a course on the U.S. Supreme Court and the religion clauses of the First Amendment at New York University in Abu Dhabi (NYU-AD) alongside President John Sexton. While at NYU-AD, she also served as a compliance officer, developing one of the first social responsibility programs on migrant labor rights in the region.

Throughout her career, Professor Abdelall has represented the interests of the Arab American and Muslim American communities in front of the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Education, and the White House, and led coalitions in filings of amicus briefs on religious land use matters in federal court. She currently serves on the following boards and commissions: advisory board member, Center for Arab American Philanthropy; board member, Muslim Public Affairs Council; at-large board member, National Association of Muslim Lawyers; member, Arab American Institute's National Policy Council; and Virginia Advisory Committee, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

Professor Abdelall graduated with both a BA and JD from the University of Michigan. After graduation, she was a D.C. Bar Pro Bono Graduate Fellow with the American Civil Liberties Union's Legislative Office. She currently teaches legal writing at the University of the District of Columbia's David A. Clarke School of Law.