Sameena’s story is the story of the American Dream. The story of opportunity, hard work and dedication to service.
Sameena was born in Evanston, IL to Indian Muslim immigrant parents and grew up in the Edgebrook neighborhood of Chicago. Her father worked as an engineer at O’Hare, and her mother as a pediatrician at the Uptown Board of Health Clinic. Sameena attended Chicago Public Schools, Regina Dominican H.S., and graduated from Northwestern University.
After graduation, she managed a Planned Parenthood clinic, and for the past decade has worked in real estate as a tenant advocate for small businesses and community nonprofits serving women, immigrants, refugees, LGBTQ, and sexual assault survivors.
Sameena has lived in the 5th District for 30 years and currently resides in the North Center neighborhood with her husband, Talha.
“Helping good people do good things.”
Sameena has been a leader in the business, arts, and nonprofit communities for 25 years. For over a decade she has counseled and negotiated on behalf of small businesses and nonprofits against landlords and financial institutions as a real estate tenant representative and advocate for organizations such as Upwardly Global, Instituto del Progreso Latino, Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, Rape Victim Advocates, Chicago Women’s Health Center and the Chicago Foundation for Women.
As a former Planned Parenthood manager, she is the only candidate in the race with direct healthcare experience in a federally-funded clinic.
Sameena’s civic involvement includes:
Symposium to Elect Women & People of Color, cofounder
League of Women Voters Chicago, Membership Committee
Chicago Women's Health Center, Advisory Council
Hand Her the Mic - women of color corporate & community workshops, founder
United State of Women/Galvanize Chicago, Host Committee,
Simmer Brown Political Comedy Collective, cofounder
Spark Program, mentor to middle schoolers on the South Side
Chicago Community Trust/Asian Giving Circle, Membership Co-Chair
YWCA Evanston/North Shore, Board Member
United Way of Metropolitan Chicago, Allocations Working Group & APA Outreach
Chicago Council on Global Affairs, President's Circle, India Roundtable
Sameena has worked with people from all backgrounds and income levels. She knows how policy and funding affect real people. She has gone to Capitol Hill to advocate for legislation and has fought to empower women and marginalized communities throughout her career.
She has the experience. She has the values.
Progressive Democrat and Ceiling Crasher
We deserve better choices. Sameena understands the advancement of underrepresented communities and the creation of a just economy are not separate goals. They are mutually necessary to the cause of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all Americans.
Sameena is a social and fiscal progressive who will fight for Medicare for All, a woman’s right to choose, a living wage, equal pay, civil rights, regulating “too big to fail” financial institutions, campaign finance reform, environmental protections, and for the right of every American to live and work without fear of discrimination and predation. She would be a proud member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
The U.S. ranks behind 100 other countries in women’s representation in national legislative office. This year, Sameena stands alongside countless women and people of color who have answered the call to serve their country and boldly steer the ship of State toward progress.
If elected, Sameena would be the first woman in history to represent Illinois’ 5th District and the first Muslim woman to have a seat at the table of our greatest deliberative body. When Sameena is given the honor to serve, the voters of her district and all Americans will have a fresh, bold, progressive, and inclusive voice in Congress.