Imam Kashif Abdul-Karim

Imam Kashif Abdul-Karim is a graduate from the University of Connecticut. After graduation he reverted to Islam in May of 1986 under the national leadership of Imam W.D. Mohammed.

Imam Kashif Abdul-Karim has studied with various imams in association with Imam WD Mohammed’s leadership throughout the United States and under local scholars in the tradition of the Prophet Muhammad. Imam Kashif has spent many years working in Islamic Education. Imam Kashif served as an Islamic Studies Teacher, a City CMS Curriculum Coordinator for Muslims of New Haven and Hartford, and a Curriculum Coordinator for the North-East Region Department of Islamic Education,

He began his secular career teaching school in The New Haven Public School system, and channel 30, WFSB as a graphic engineer, a Hartford news station. In 1986, Kashif became interested in the marketing aspect of the television industry and went to “Storer Communications” for employment.

In 1987 Kashif became an Islamic chaplain for the State of Connecticut. He retired in 2004 after 17 years of service to the Department of Correction {Maloney, Manson Youth Institution, Webster, and Cheshire}.  This was a rewarding experience because he mostly set an Islamic foundation for our most endangered and incarcerated young people between 16 and 21 years of age.

As a Muslim chaplain a variety of roles were filled. A few of the responsibilities were supporting families during times of grief, loss and end of life rituals and their performance, advocating for religious freedom and rights, advising institutions on religious and cultural accommodations, providing ethics guidance, representing Islam at the institutional level, and providing instruction in Islamic sciences, marriages, pastoral counseling and funeral arrangements.

In 1987, Kashif’ also became involved in Human Services. He established employment with the office of Child Support Enforcement. In this capacity, he worked to develop financial stability and paternity acknowledgement for economically abandoned and neglected women.

Kashif was later employed in 1989 as a Parole Officer with the State of Connecticut’s Juvenile Justice Department. He worked with committed delinquent youth and their families. He retired in Dec. 2009 after 23 years of state service. Upon retirement, he received recognition for outstanding service from the former governor’s office.

In 1998, Kashif began the First Dawah newsletter, Adhan productions, in New Haven, CT. It included Imam WD Mohammed lectures and community concerns from an Islamic perspective.

In 2000, Kashif founded I.M.A.G.E, Inspired Minds Against Going Evil. This was based on an idea by Imam WD Mohammad, to develop resources outside of the masjid to support masjid and community concerns. Programs included an annual interfaith banquet, Halaqahs, sadaqah programs, and community mentoring and tutoring for inner city youth. 

In 2002, Kashif Abdul-Karim went to the capitol of Hartford, CT to serve as Vice-Principal of the Clara Muhammad School system. He eventually served as director of The Clara Muhammad Supplemental Education Program once the principal Sajdah Sharief retired.

Kashif has worked with The Mosque Cares Department of Islamic Education on national curriculum development projects for weekend schools. This assignment was in direct relationship with the direction of Imam WD Mohammad. In this capacity, Kashif worked with distinguished educational thinkers on The National Framework for the Clara Muhammad School Curriculum. Imam W.D. Mohammed and The Mosque Cares’ Department of Islamic Education accepted this curriculum framework.

Imam Kashif Abdul-Karim also served as a principal for the Islamic Cooperative Home-Schooling Network of Connecticut. This was a full-time alternative to Public Education School. This full-time home-schooling program was designed for Muslim youth and their parents. This Program was directed under the guidance of Imam Zaid Shakir.

Kashif’s love and commitment for education has allowed him to work with educational scholars on The National Framework for the Clara Muhammad School Curriculum, specializing in the prophetic ascension application theory.

Kashif also served as a business partner in the local Masjid business efforts of “Iqraa Bookstore Boutique and Things”  

In May of 2006, after the death of Imam Qasim Sharief, the community elected and ratified Kashif as the resident Imam of Muhammad Islamic Center of Greater Hartford. He continues to serve as the resident imam over a very diverse population from around the world. 

Kashif is President of Insight Productions Incorporated; a program specializing in workshops, photography, videography, desktop publishing and training on Al-Islam and culturally based programming for African Americans. In this capacity, he has performed training for social workers, psychologists, foster parents and treatment providers for the Department of Children and Families on “Islam and Muslim Children”.

Imam Kashif Abdul-Karim has represented the Muslim Community of Connecticut in the movement against gun violence. This effort joined together The Brotherhood Leadership Summit of New Haven, The Christian Community Commission of New Haven, CTRIBAT and the Muslim American Community. In this capacity, he worked with the Mayor of New Haven and the asst chief of police to perform community forums and community dialogues against Gun Violence.

Imam Kashif Abdul-Karim instructed a regular class at Southern Connecticut State University on “Pastoral Counseling from an Islamic Perspective”, in an effort to expand his personal service to the community he joined with Diversity Solutions to bring Diversity training to the State of Connecticut law enforcement agencies. In this capacity he provided training on Islam to Municipal Police Departments, Connecticut State Police, and The Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Imam Kashif Abdul-Karim was selected on May 29, 2007 to be a representative for Muslims in The United States of America at the Global Civilization Study Centre in London, England. He represented the Indigenous Muslims of America and addressed the contributions of African American Muslims in America under the leadership of Imam W.D. Muhammad.

Kashif currently serves as treasurer for The New England Council of Masajid, serves as an instructor for the Islamic Leadership Training and Development Program. Working with Imam Mubaashir Uqdah to establish the knowledge body of Imam WD Mohammad. He also functions as the President Emeritus, treasurer and co-founder for the Muslim Endorsement Council.

Imam Kashif previously served on the boards of the interfaith Fellowship for Universal Healthcare, Faith leaders for a more just budget, The Connecticut Center for a New Economy, the United States Commission of Civil rights, and CT’s special advisory committee. He also served on the board of directors for the Council of American Islamic Relations, Ct Chapter for ten plus years. and as the regional coordinator for the American Coalition of Good Government, New England chapter. Imam Kashif also served on the Ct Governor’s committee to reopen places of worship during the covid pandemic in 2021, and the governor’s temporary committee to address gun violence.

Kashif was the first Muslim to perform the inaugural prayer for the former Mayor of the City of New Haven, The Honorable John DeStephano, and the former Governor of Connecticut, The Honorable Dannel Malloy.   

Kashif published his first book in 2015 entitled “In Search of the Black Seed” chronicling the communal conversion of Muslim Americans of color.

Kashif has received many awards and recognition for Community Service. He has received awards from the African American Cultural Center of UConn, Muhammad Islamic Center of Greater Hartford, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, The Networking Alliance of Black Social Workers, a Citation and Proclamation from The Honorable Mayor John Daniels for Service to the Community of New Haven, The Civil Service Award, from Oriental lodge #6 F & A.M. Prince Hall Free Masons, and also the who’s, who award from The City of Hartford for his community involvement.  

Kashif is struggling with a genetic-hereditary disorder called Ataxia. Ataxia often leads to people having difficulty with balance and walking. It also affects speech and the ability to swallow. Ataxia can also cause visual disturbances. Ataxia often makes tasks requiring fine motor control, such as writing, more difficult.

Kashif is the widower of Khaliah Abdul-Karim and has three children Samira, Gabriel and Joshua Abdul-Karim.  

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