Press Release: CAIR-Philadelphia Hires Jacob Bender as its New Executive Director

(Philadelphia, PA, 10/15/13) – The Philadelphia Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today announced the hiring of Jacob Bender, an interfaith activist and award-winning documentary film director, as their new Executive Director.

Mr. Bender brings to CAIR decades of activist history in some of the most important peace and justice movements of our time, and a long resume of professional accomplishments in communications for both nonprofit and corporate clients.

In a statement, Mr. Bender said:

“As an American Jew, I am both humbled and honored by the trust that CAIR has placed in me. My appointment is perfectly in keeping with CAIR’s long-standing commitment to pluralism and promoting greater interfaith understanding. It is also, I believe, an expression of Islam’s tradition of mutual respect.”

CAIR-Philadelphia Chapter President Osama Al-Qasem stated:

“The Philadelphia Chapter welcomes Mr. Bender and looks forward to working with him and leveraging his extensive experience in the service of CAIR’s clients, partners and supporters.”

In the wake of the attacks on September 11, 2001, Mr. Bender undertook a series of outreach initiatives to the Muslim community, both in the U.S. and abroad. He has spoken at dozens of mosques and Muslim venues across the country; made six trips to Qatar to speak at interfaith conferences; and addressed an international meeting of Muslim scholars at Al-Azhar University in Cairo in 2009.

Out of Cordoba,” Mr. Bender’s award-winning documentary film about Jewish-Christian-Muslim relations, has been broadcast on international television stations, and screened over 120 times at universities, churches, synagogues, mosques, conferences and film festivals around the world, including at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

With his unique background as a bridge builder between the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim communities, Mr. Bender looks forward to participating in CAIR’s mission: enhancing understanding of Islam by non-Muslims; encouraging interfaith dialogue; protecting civil liberties; empowering American Muslims; and building coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

Mr. Bender is available for print, TV, and radio interviews.

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CONTACT: CAIR Philadelphia Executive Director Jacob Bender, 267-515-6710,

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