Our Team

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Firuzeh MahmoudiExecutive Director
Firuzeh Mahmoudi is the co-founder and Executive Director of United for Iran. After witnessing the 2009 uprising in Iran, Mahmoudi organized a global day of solidarity on July 25, 2009. The day turned out to be the largest day of global support for Iran in history with tens of thousands of demonstrators holding rallies in 110 cities around the world.

From 2005 to 2009, Mahmoudi was the International Coordinator of a $23 million United Nations project demonstrating best environmental health practices in the global south. Prior, Mahmoudi served as the International Co-Coordinator of the environmental health coalition Health Care Without Harm with 350 member groups in 50 countries. In this role, Mahmoudi fostered the development and engagement of regional and national groups in the global south by providing strategic, policy and technical support. Mahmoudi earned both of her Master’s of Science and Master’s of Public Affairs from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs, University of Indiana, Bloomington and her Bachelor’s in Political Economics from University of California, Berkeley. She has been serving on the board and steering committee of various NGOs focusing on health, equality or Iranian culture and language, overseeing strategic direction, operations and governance.

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Jehán SeirafiProgram and Development Manager

Jehán Seirafi serves as the Program and Development Manager for United for Iran. Prior to joining United for Iran, she was the Program Director for Volunteer Nepal in Kathmandu, Nepal. Seirafi oversaw the organization’s program, building an international network that provided educational and medical relief to underdeveloped areas. She was responsible for the development of the program’s outreach efforts by coordinating with local NGOs and international educational institutions. Seirafi is also the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Sunsar Maya, a non-profit organization that provides educational support to orphanages and operating grants to schools with at-risk populations, in developing countries.

Prior to this, Seirafi worked as an editor and writer for a variety of publications, including Avalon Travel, where she acquired authors for the award-winning international travel guidebooks, and oversaw the digital publication of the Rick Steves travel series. Seirafi received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Social Behavior from the University of California, Irvine and a Master of Arts in Modern European History. She has served various organizations committed to international aid, human rights, and fighting human trafficking. Most recently, she sat as the Advocacy Officer of the Advocacy Committee/California Committee North of Human Rights Watch.

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Reza GhazinouriManager, Political Prisoners Program and Iran Expert

Reza Ghazinouri is a researcher and Farsi spokesperson for United for Iran. Ghazinouri was born and raised in Iran. He studied sociology as a graduate student at the University of Tehran, where he was an outspoken student activist. Ghazinouri co-founded and led several pro-democracy associations during his term at the university, and was subsequently expelled and later blocked from finishing his academic career, despite ranking 6th among 5000 participants in the National Graduate University Entrance Exam.

Ghazinouri continued his work as a political activist and journalist inside, and later outside, of Iran. He currently contributes to several publications and websites.

 

 

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Zachary StickneyProgram Assistant

Zachary Stickney is a recent graduate of Weber State University, where he received a B.S. in Political Science and Philosophy and was selected as the Outstanding Graduate in Political Science.  While attending Weber, Zach was selected as a Presidential Scholar, a Horatio Alger Association Scholar, and a Richard Richards Institute Scholar.  In 2011, he received the University’s Outstanding Volunteer Service Award for his work with campus organizations and his volunteer work in the internally displaced persons camps near Maai Mahiu, Kenya.  Upon graduation, he was a finalist for Weber’s scholar of the year award.  Zach enjoys basketball, hiking, and singing karaoke badly.

Zach will be serving as a Community Health volunteer for Peace Corps Namibia starting March 2014.

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Puyan MahmudianResearcher
Puyan Mahmudian currently serves as Researcher at United for Iran. Born and raised in Iran, Mahmudian attended Tehran Polytechnic University, where he organized as a student activist. He served as a member of the executive board of both the University Guild and the Islamic Student Association . He also was elected Editor-in-Chief of renowned student publication, “Rivar,” in which he advocated for political reform and human rights in protest of the government‘s policies. As a result of his activism, Mahmudian was arrested in May 2007 and spent nearly three months in solitary confinement, enduring torture and ill-treatment by his interrogators. After his release, Mahmudian took part in the national entrance exam for graduate studies, and despite ranking sixth in among a pool of more than one thousand candidates, Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence deprived him of pursuing higher education.

In September 2009, Mahmudian left Iran, and continues his activities in support of human rights and civil society from outside. He founded Daneshjoonews.com, an online organizational platform and publication, which serves as a critical voice for Iranian students and supports their demand for peaceful activism within Iranian universities. Mahmudian continues to speak out through media outlets and contributes to public awareness projects, such as Students4Iran and Can You Solve This.