HPD Police Chief Recognizes Officer’s Heroism

July 21, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Houston, Texas: Houston Police Chief Charles A. McClelland, Jr. proudly presented HPD Lieutenant Harry Zamora with the Medal of Valor Award at a ceremony on July 06 at the Fondren Police Station.

HPD Chief Charles McClelland Jr presents Lt Harry Zamora with the Medal of ValorOn February 22, Lieutenant Zamora saw an elderly man trapped in a Cadillac engulfed in flames on the inside shoulder of the Southwest Freeway.  Several citizens braved the flames in order to lift the vehicle away from the guard rail so Lieutenant Zamora could open the door and free the man.  Lieutenant Zamora suffered third degree burns to his hand in the process.

It was those actions which prompted Chief McClelland to present Lieutenant Zamora with the department’s most prestigious award.

“I’ve known Lieutenant Zamora for a long time,” said HPD Chief McClelland.  “He has always been a dedicated professional and a dedicated police officer,” he said.

“Heroes always think of themselves last and clearly Lieutenant Zamora’s actions fall into that category.  However, they go to the heart and soul of what HPD is all about,” Chief McClelland added.

“All I remember is seeing the vehicle completely engulfed in flames.  There were pieces flying off and it was exploding,” said Lieutenant Zamora.  “The heat was so intense, I knew I was going to get burned, I just didn’t know how badly I was going to get burned,” he added.

“I’m deeply honored to be receiving this award today,” said Lieutenant Harry Zamora.  “But it is also a sad reminder that Mr. Lloyd Sanchez passed away shortly after the incident.”

Lieutenant Zamora’s actions were much appreciated by Mr. Sanchez’s daughter.

“April told me she was thankful we were able to get her father out of the car and get him to the hospital so she had time to make the trip from Dallas and say goodbye,” said Lieutenant Zamora.

April Sanchez is now creating the Sanchez-Zamora Foundation in honor of her father and Lieutenant Zamora.  Proceeds will go towards helping other burn victims.  For more information email the foundation at sanchezzamorafoundation@gmail.com.

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Indian Envoy Conferred Top Saudi Honor

July 14, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Nilofar Suhrawardy, TMO

RIYADH/NEW DELHI: Indian envoy to Saudi Arabia Talmiz Ahmad has been conferred the King Abdulaziz Medal of First Class for his contribution to strengthening bilateral ties between India and Saudi Arabia. He is the first Indian diplomat to be conferred this honor. The medal, comprising a decorative badge and a certificate signed by King Abdullah, was presented by Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal (July 10).

“This (King Abdulaziz Order of Merit – First Class) is a tribute from Saudi Arabia to Talmiz Ahmad for his contributions during both his tenures as Indian Ambassador in promoting bilateral relations between the two countries,” Prince Al-Faisal said after conferring the Saudi Award of highest order to Indian envoy.

Ahmad has played a significant role in strengthening Indo-Saudi ties and promoting them on a “strategic level.” On this, Ahmad said: “Indo-Saudi relations have been transformed into a strategic partnership with the signing of the Delhi Declaration during the landmark visit of King Abdullah to New Delhi in 2006, and the return visit of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh last year.”

The Indian envoy, whose term in Riyadh ends shortly, is also credited for promoting relations between India and Saudi Arabia at several levels, including cultural and economic. Describing his role as “modest” in progress of bilateral ties, Ahmad said: “Mine has been a modest role in this endeavor, in which a large number of people have contributed both from India and Saudi Arabia.”

Ahmad was first appointed ambassador of India to Saudi Arabia in January 2000. He has served as ambassador in several other countries, including UAE and Oman. He was appointed again as Indian envoy to Saudi Arabia last year ahead of Prime Minister Singh’s visit to the Kingdom.

In addition to being a career diplomat, Ahmad has written several books and papers on politics of West Asia and energy. The Arabic translation of his book: “Children of Abraham at War: The Clash of Messianic Militarism” was released earlier this month in New Delhi. Ahmad was present on the occasion. His aim is to “promote Indo-Saudi ties in a number of areas on immediate, medium-term and long-term basis that include research and studies, energy discussions and advance guidance with regards to business imunity.”

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Mona Eskandari Receives Leadership Medal

May 19, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Eskandari M.lg_vertTUCSON, AZ–The Nugent Medal at the University of Arizona is given to well-rounded individuals whose contributions through co-curricular and community activities and leadership have had a positive impact on the University and surrounding community. Mona Eskandari is this year’s one of two recipients.

She  graduated last week Summa Cum Laude and received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering with honors and a minor in Near Eastern studies. 

She has been selected as the Outstanding Senior for mechanical engineering and for the College of Engineering.

As a mentor to the Girl Scouts at the Design and Robotics camp, she taught girls how to solder and work mechanical gears as they created robots. As an Engineering Ambassador at the UA, Eskandari is involved in outreach, seeking to inspire students as young as grade school to foster a love of learning. She also worked as communications chair for the annual Women’s Leadership Conference helping UA students learn about the workplace experience.

She has been involved in student organizations since being voted an officer for the Society of Women Engineers when still a senior in high school. She also served as a research intern in the agriculture and biosystems engineering department.

Additionally, Eskandari has demonstrated leadership skills as the mechanical lead on her Interdisciplinary Senior Design Team contributing to the novel creation of a gem classifier, a device capable of uniquely identifying precious stones. As vice president of the Muslim Students Association, she served the community of Tucson and the University as she united students in an effort to raise money for the less fortunate.

Eskandari’s exemplary academic record and involvement at the UA has earned her numerous scholarships and honors, among which are the Arizona President’s Award for Excellence scholarship, the National Society of Women Engineers Scholarship, the Alpha Omega Epsilon National Foundation Engineering and Technical Science scholarship, the Arizona Power Authority scholarship and the College of Engineering Award for Highest Academic Distinction. She also is a three-time recipient of the UA Honors College William and Marguerite Hesketh Memorial Scholarship.

In addition to performing research funded by the National Science Foundation and presenting her findings at national and annual conferences, Eskandari was nationally selected to work for IBM as a research intern in San Jose, Calif. this past summer.

Eskandari has earned acceptance to continue graduate studies in engineering at MIT and Stanford. Her energy and strength is drawn from her foundational Islamic faith and the adage, a quote from Martin Luther King Jr.: “Faith is taking the first step even when you do not see the entire staircase.”

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