By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – Dr Nyla Ali Khan, Kashmiri-American academic and author, has been selected as a member of the Oklahoma Governor’s International Team (OKGIT). The OKGIT is comprised of people from the business sector, members of government at the local, state and federal levels, educators, and international, cultural and other nonprofit organizations.
According to the website, the members are “diverse and committed to a prosperous and globally focused Oklahoma.”
Current members of the team’s executive committee are: Chair – Dr. Douglas Price, iDirector of Global Learning at Tulsa Community College (TCC); Vice Chair – John VanPool, Assistant Director of Public Information for the Citizen Potawatomi Nation; Brenda Jones Barwick, President of Jones Public Relations, Inc.; Executive Director – Jared Scism works as the Assistant Director of the International House and Programs at the University of Central Oklahoma; Secretary – Bob Lieser, VP, International Programming, Tulsa Global Alliance; and Treasurer – Randy Kellogg, SVP International Department, Prosperity Bank.
Dr. Khan is a professor at Rose State College in Midwest City and taught as a Visiting Professor at the University of Oklahoma. Formerly, she was a professor at the University of Nebraska-Kearney. She received her Ph.D. in English Literature and her Masters in Postcolonial Literature and Theory at the University of Oklahoma.
Author of several published articles, book reviews and editorials, she has edited Parchment of Kashmir, a collection of essays on Jammu and Kashmir, written four books, including The Fiction of Nationality in an Era of Transnationalism and Islam, Women, and Violence in Kashmir: Between Indian and Pakistan.
Her articles have appeared in academic journals, newspapers and magazines focusing on the political issues and strife of her homeland, Jammu and Kashmir. Khan has lectured on the subject of Kashmir at several universities including American University, Columbia University and New York University. An Oklahoma Humanities Scholar, she speaks publicly statewide, including at women’s correctional facilities focusing on education and women’s empowerment. She has also been interviewed by numerous major media outlets including NPR and Voice of America.
A member of the Harvard-based Scholars Strategy Network, Dr. Khan works to build bridges across racial, political, and ideological divides. She has served on the board of Generation Citizen, a nonprofit that empowers younger generations through civics education and is a member of the multicultural, multinational and multireligious Women’s Interfaith Alliance.
In May 2015, Khan was the first Kashmiri woman to become a member of the Advisory Council for the Oklahoma Commission on the Status of Women, a resource for information on issues related to women and gender bias. In March 2019, Khan became the group’s Commissioner.
She was also recently selected as one of The Journal Record’s “50 Making a Difference” for 2019 and “The Journal Record Woman of the Year.”
“I have always believed that a dynamic world requires inclusion and diversity,” Khan told The City Sentinel. “My new role as a member of the International Team of the Governor of Oklahoma will give me a chance to work with diverse cultural and social groups to encourage international students to enroll in colleges and universities in Oklahoma.
“As educators, we are in a position to mold students not just intellectually, but as functional members of the global community,” she added. “I hope to play a role in creating opportunities for meaningful communication between students in Oklahoma and the larger academic community.”