Currently the Director of the Minority Business Enterprise Program of Nassau County’s Minority Affairs Agency, Ali Mirza has come a long way from his humble beginnings on the other side of the world. Ali, a Democrat, has been recognized across the political spectrum for his civic involvement, and is the recipient of the “Congressional Medal of Distinction” for his community leadership and vision by the National Republican Congressional Committee. In 2002, County Executive Tom Suozzi appointed him to the Nassau County Minority Affairs Council. Since then, he has been named Director of the Minority Business Enterprise Program where he assists in the creation and growth of local jobs and businesses.
Born in far away Karachi to a working class father and school teacher mother, Ali studied hard and excelled throughout his school years, earning both Masters and Law degrees. After being a student of the prestigious Chartered Insurance Institute School in London, Ali left home with his parents blessings’ to continue his education at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut.
While there, he met the woman he would marry, Kay. They were wed in 1985, and he finally came home to Nassau in 1991. Ali then went about building a successful insurance business, now the Mirza Group, located in Franklin Square, and became active in the local Lion’s Club. In 1993, after two years of renting, Ali had saved enough to purchase a home in Elmont, where he still resides.
A natural leader, Ali was constantly sought out by fellow emigres to assist with the difficulties faced by most new Americans, especially those who in some ways are considered “different” by the populace. His success in that area and his amenable style resulted in the urging of many friends to establish an organization for mutual support and to educate others. Thus, in 2000, he founded the Americans of Pakistani Heritage, an organization in the forefront of promoting an awareness and understanding of Americans who hailed from that country. He was also instrumental in arranging awareness programs for the U.S. Department of Commerce in order that the local population is adequately represented in Census 2000. His coordination of Interfaith services for the Jewish, Christian and Muslim communities both before and after 9/11 and an annual “Pakistani-American Night” with the New York Mets at Shea Stadium are just two examples of his successful efforts to promote understanding and tolerance.
Now, he has declared for the Democratic nomination for the position of County Legislator in the 3rd District. This includes: Elmont, Valley Stream, North Valley Stream, Franklin Square, Bellerose Terrace, South Floral Park and portions of West Hempstead. Ali has taken this step, which many have urged, to create a clear voice for the betterment of conditions for all in the district.
Now, a single parent, Ali’s pride is daughter, “Becca” a student at Northeastern University in Boston.