Born in Evanston, IL to Indian Muslim immigrant parents, Sameena and her family soon moved to the Edgebrook neighborhood, so her parents could work for the City of Chicago. Having lived in the 5th for 30 years, Sameena currently lives in North Center with her husband, Talha F. Basit.
A graduate of Chicago Public Schools, Regina Dominican H.S., and Northwestern University, Sameena has dedicated her life and career to standing up for those unable to stand up for themselves. Having previously managed Planned Parenthood’s Austin area clinic and now as a tenant advocate in commercial real estate, Sameena has spent years advancing the issues and needs of women, children, and marginalized groups.
In her spare time, Sameena serves on the advisory boards for Chicago Public Media (WBEZ/Vocalo) and Chicago Women’s Health Center and has volunteered at Chicago Cares, YWCA, and the Chicago Community Trust. She founded Hand Her the Mic, an organization dedicated to empowering women of color through comedy, and co-founded her own diverse comedy troupe, Simmer Brown.
Sameena was selected as a 2017 National Leadership Academy Fellow by the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies in Washington, D.C.
Read about Sameena in a Chicago Tribune article from April 2017.