Nadia Kahf, a hijabi attorney from Wayne, took her oath with her hand on a copy of the Qur’an when she was sworn in at the Passaic County Courthouse, in New Jersey.
This is a big win for Muslim women, who are constantly reprimanded for openly practicing their faith. Having a hijabi women at a prominent position in the U.S court of law is positive step in the right direction.
“I am proud to represent the Muslim and Arab communities in New Jersey in the US, I want the younger generation to see that they can practice their religion without fear that they can be who they are. Diversity is our strength, it is not our weakness,” Nadia expressed during the ceremony.
American attorney Nadia Kahf, appointed to the Supreme Court of the state of New Jersey, became the first hijab-wearing judge on the bench.
She took the oath of office with her hand on the Quran pic.twitter.com/LyNoYwjga8
— TRT World (@trtworld) March 23, 2023
Nadia immigrated to America from Syria when she was 2-years-old. Ever since 2003, the hijab-wearing lawyer has been a member of the board of directors for the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, an Islamic civil rights organization where she now serves as chair of the board. She is also the president of the Islamic Center of Passaic County, one of the state’s largest mosques and the legal counsel for Wafa House, a nonprofit domestic violence and social service agency based in Clifton.
Before her, Judge Charlene Elder from Lebanon was the first-ever hijab-wearing judge in The United States. She claimed seat on Wayne County Circuit Court in 2005, in Michigan.
The Governor of New Jersey, Phil Murphy, nominated Nadia last year. In order to advance her nomination—community leaders, mayors, council members, school board members and leaders of the New Jersey Muslim Lawyers Association signed a letter and also recieved the support of over 700 people through an online petition.