As announced, Voice of Islam March 2020 Tour - Togetherness / Kotahitanga will start from Auckland and ends in Christchurch. Below are the details of our guest speakers. The speakers will be paired with local speakers in the region.
1. Tim (Yusuf) Chambers
Yusuf Chambers was born in Woking, Surrey. He was trapped in the darkness of his life. His search for truth has bring him to Islam. He is involved with a number of leading Muslim organisations; both in the UK and abroad. These have included Peace TV, Muslim Aid, Al-Jumuah Magazine, Islam Channel and Unity TV where he conceived and presented ‘The Path to Guidance’, a reverts interview programme.
He has travelled extensively in the Middle East, Africa and Europe before settling in London. When it comes to charity fundraisers, hands-on community work and powerful advocacy for Islam, the name Yusuf Chambers is seldom far from the discussion table. His work also covered marketing and sales and increasingly he has features most prominently in media, where he has carved out a niche as one of a new brand of dynamic and professional TV presenters within the community. He is an ambassador for One Ummah.
2. John Fontain
John Fontain, a British man who used to be a Jazz singer and a successful Diamond trader until he accepted Islam and dedicated his life to Da’wah. John Fontain was born in
Manchester, UK to a working class Christian family. When he was eighteen, he struck ‘diamond’ deals with some of the West African immigrants who had come to England, and thus, went to visit Sierra Leone in West Africa. On his way, he was stuck in Senegal, penniless. Seeing his plight, a Muslim hotel manager offered him shelter in his own home. During his stay, he marveled at the courteous mannerisms of his host, and recalls that when he first heard the Azan, it was as if ‘his heart was ripped out of his chest’. He would watch his Muslim hosts offer their prayers; this brief period in Senegal was his first positive impression about Islam.
One day in 2008, while in Egypt, he went to a Mosque in Cairo to pray. When he was about to do so, his friend told him he could not pray until he had taken the Shahadah (Muslim declaration of faith). John was stunned at this point because, all this time, even having hung around with Muslim friends in England, no one had ever told him about the Shahadah, the actual entry into Islam, the passage of safety in the Hereafter!
In 2011 he found out he had a brain tumor (of which he is now recovered). It was a blessing in disguise that gave him the time and opportunity to call people to Islam full time.
In 2012 he went back to Sierra Leone and started to look for opportunities where he could help. Today he is working through an organization called ‘Volunteer Sierra Leone’ with over 65 Muslim schools to provide better education to over 14,000 students throughout Sierra Leone.
3. Hamza Andreas Tzortzis
Hamza Andreas Tzortzis is the author of The Divine Reality: God, Islam & The Mirage of Atheism. He is a public speaker, instructor and essayist. He has a master’s and a
postgraduate certificate in philosophy from the University of London. He is currently continuing his postgraduate studies in the field. Hamza has studied Islamic thought and theology under qualified scholars. He has delivered workshops, courses and an accredited diploma course on topics related to Islamic thought and philosophy.
Hamza is a popular speaker at university campuses. He has spoken at many universities all around the world. Hamza has debated prominent academics and thinkers on Islam and atheism, his interlocutors have included Professor Lawrence Krauss, Professor Peter Simons, Dan Barker and Professor Simon Blackburn. He has over a decade of experience in articulating a compassionate and rational case for Islam. Hamza converted to Islam in 2002.
He loves spending time with his family, reading, writing poetry, travelling and training in the gym. He is a trained Boxer and Wing Chun Kung Fu practitioner. Inspired by the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), some of his favourite statements include “compassion beautifies everything” and “love for humanity what you love for yourself”.
4. Fahad Tasleem
Fahad Tasleem is the founder of DC Seminary (https://www.dcseminary.com/) , an institute focused on spiritually empowering working professionals, graduates & college students. He also serves as the Head of US Outreach for iERA (the Islamic Education & Research Academy).
His diverse study & research interests include Qur’anic Studies, Dawah, Islamic & Comparative Theology, Behavioral Economics, Economic History, and Arabic Linguistics. Fahad holds a bachelors in Economics from Michigan State University and a Masters in Business Taxation from the University of Southern California.
Fahad studied Arabic at Georgetown University and is currently studying in the graduate program in Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Texas at Austin with a focus on Islamic Theology.