Nahla al-Kayali, the founder and executive director of Access California Services, was honored by the White House as a leader of Change, along with nine others.
Kayali dropped out of school at the age of 16, but has spent most of her years serving the Arab and Muslim communities in the United States.
Her work at the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS) included securing health insurance to low-income families, offering English language classes for foreign migrants and issuing food ration cards to women and children.
She also played a major role in establishing the first Arab Museum in Detroit, and was commissioned by a former California governor to serve on a special committee.
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