Ed most recently served with American Friends Service Committee as the Quaker International Affairs Representative for Iran, building connections between Iranian institutions and the United States, and providing resources for public education and advocacy regarding Iran in United States. Prior to that appointment Ed worked for 18 years with Mennonite Central Committee as director of programs for Central and Southern Asia, as well as the Middle East. Earlier, Ed worked at the International Irrigation Management Institute in Sri Lanka. He has a bachelor’s in engineering from Stanford University, and a master’s of public administration and PhD in agricultural economics from Cornell University.
Trina has a passion for forming relationships across cultures and religious experiences. She is active in the diverse Harrisonburg community in networking and building bridges where there needs to be compassion for and deeper understanding of the “other.” Professionally she worked as an Eligibility Coordinator at the Harrisonburg/Rockingham Heath Department for six years before taking time off to take care of two energetic sons. She’s also worked at EMU’s Summer Peacebuilding Institute which has given her connections and friendships all over the world. She’s traveled extensively across Ireland, Northern Ireland, the Philippines, and Mexico, but calls the beautiful Shenandoah Valley home, along with her husband, Brian. Trina holds a B.A. in Theater and Psychology, with a minor in Justice, Peace and Conflict Studies from Eastern Mennonite University.
Amir holds a master’s degree in religions and mysticism from Tehran University in Iran and a PhD in the philosophy of religion from McGill University in Montreal. He finished his doctoral thesis at the Iranian Institute of Philosophy. Amir also was a visiting scholar at the University of Birmingham in England and taught at the Al-Mahdi Institute in Birmingham.
Sheida Shakouri Rad
Sedigheh (Sheida) Shakouri Rad is a visiting Muslim scholar at EMU (2013-2014). She earned her BA in Islamic Theology and Sciences and her MA in History and Civilization of Muslim Nations from the University of Tehran, Iran. She received her PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Birmingham, UK. Her thesis was on The Status of Women in Iranian Modern Shi’i Thought (1906-2004). She has been a faculty member at the University of Tehran for 15 years. Her interests are Women in the Quran, Women in Islamic Law, Women in Iran, and Islamic Feminism. She is married and has two children.
John has lived in several countries including Germany, France, the Congo, and Nepal. His interest is in language, and in how different “languages”—of faith, of theory, of culture—frame our perceptions of each other. His current work is in describing how our need for each other, as persons having different faith languages, is at the very heart of the gospel. He was cofounder and V.P. of Research and Development at Rosetta Stone from 1992 to 2006. His undergraduate work was at EMU, and his Ph.D is in Computer Science from Duke University.