Tiffany Puett, Executive Director

Tiffany Puett is a scholar of American religions and a community educator. As the founding Executive Director of the Institute for Diversity and Civic Life, she researches, develops resources and curriculum, and teaches about religious and cultural diversity, equity and social justice. She holds a PhD in Religious Studies from the University of Waterloo and a master’s degree in Ethics from Boston University. Her work is inspired by the rich diversity of Texas, the power of storytelling, and her commitment to mutual liberation. She lives in Austin with her husband, two lovely children, and two energetic dogs.

Sadia Tirmizi, Director of Operations

Sadia Tirmizi has over 18 years of nonprofit management experience assisting organizations meet their operational and strategic planning goals. Her MBA, coupled with a social work background, has allowed her to combine her passion for addressing community needs with her expertise in managing the business side of running nonprofits. Sadia has worked with several interfaith organizations focusing on advocacy, dialogue and bridge-building. She is a fellow of the American Muslim Civic Leadership Institute. Prior to joining IDCL in a formal capacity in 2019, Sadia served as an oral history project volunteer and trained in conducting oral history interviews through the Muslim Voices project.

Aysha Moneer, Archive Coordinator

Aysha recently graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in Economics. Her background involves public policy work, including the Texas House of Representatives and The Economic Development & Tourism Office of Texas. In addition to her work at IDCL, she is currently working on reviewing education grants for the Rather Prize and is working on the production of Blackademics TV, a program of Black studies scholars focusing on education empowerment. She is interested in progressive politics, community organizing, and increasing diversity in Texas. In her free time, she loves reading and cooking Pakistani food.

Rimsha Syed, Archive Coordinator

Rimsha (she/hers) is an Austin-based Pakistani Muslim writer, community organizer, artist, and daughter of working-class immigrants. Her words have appeared in publications like the Huffington Post, Truthout, and Wear Your Voice Magazine. Rimsha’s work explores themes of gender, surveillance, colonization, anti-Muslim violence, and Palestinian apartheid. In 2019, she graduated from the University of Texas at Austin where she focused on journalism and women and gender studies. In Urdu, her name means a bouquet of flowers. Rimsha thrives off the tears of patriarchy and samosas.

Mehlam Bhuriwala, Oral History Fellow

Mehlam serves as an Oral History Fellow, working on Religions Texas, particularly the Muslim Voices collection, #ThisTexan, outreach, and community engagement. He recently graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in Middle Eastern Studies, and previously served as Research Intern to the IDCL’s Muslim Voices Project. In his free time, Mehlam loves to cook, spoil his cats, and practice his Arabic.

Eleonora Anedda, Oral History Fellow

Eleonora is a recent graduate from the Oral History MA at Columbia University, and came to this field from a Gender and Sexuality Studies background. She was born and raised in Sardinia, Italy and earned her BA in Humanities from the Università deli Studi di Cagliari. She is very excited to be working as an oral historian for IDCL and interviewing narrators for the Religions Texas Oral History Project. When she isn’t glued to her computer she enjoys taking care of her twelve orchids, eating tagliatelle, swimming, and going for long walks with her dog.