2018-2019 Civic Leader Fellows

Jessica Belgrave

Jessica Belgrave, Civic Leader FellowJessica Belgrave is an entrepreneur, mother, mentor, and community activist. Transplanted to Elmira, Jessica comes by way of Monroe, Louisiana and Newark, New Jersey. After working several jobs with families and individuals, Jessica discovered her purpose. She saw her opportunity to help women and teen girls. Since then, Elmira has been her working grounds for the past four years. While supporting women and teen girls Jessica uses their growth and gifts in her quest to create "social change" in the community. Jessica started out as many of us do, with humble beginnings and an impeccable work ethic. She sought to have a great career in Elmira. Not long after achieving a position doing what she loved, Jessica knew there was more that she can offer. Her insatiable appetite to help others had increased. With a vigorous work ethic, education, and world experience, Jessica would go on to move mountains in just four short years. Mountains such as forming her own nonprofit called, "Mothers Helping Mothers of Elmira", creating mentorship programs, advocating for change, and building her speaking resume. In her countless efforts to create social change, Jessica has begun this journey with only a vision and an attitude that nothing can stop her. The juggling of motherhood, activism, and selflessness, is a plight she gladly takes on like a badge of honor.



Sabah Ahmed Hathaway

Sabah Ahmed Hathaway - Civic Leader Fellow

Sabah Ahmed Hathaway was born in Bangladesh, raised in Iran and Queens, New York. As an immigrant, woman of color and a Muslim, she aspires to bring communities of different backgrounds together. She acknowledges the fact that she resides on stolen Cayuga land. She believes that building bridges between different communities and organizations will make a society stronger. It will help people understand each other on many different platforms. She believes that in order to decolonize a society that you must first decolonize your mind. She strives to dismantle various forms of patriarchy women face in different cultures and societies. She firmly believes that our youth is our future and we nee to invest in educating them with real and factual history. Sabah sits on the board of Al-Huda Islamic Center, has been involved with Ithaca Welcomes Refugees as an advocacy team member and sits on the Diversity and Inclusion committee at Green Star Co-Op. She is currently working with the Multicultural Resource Center as a program coordinator. For her, humanity and justice always come first.





Jamila Walida Simon

Jamila Simons, Civic Leader Fellow

Jamila Walida Simon earned her Bachelor's degree from Wells College and her Master's degree from Cornell University. She began her career with Cornell University Cooperative Extension in New York City (CUCE-NYC) under the direction of Dr. Davis-Manigaulte the CUCE-NYC Family and Youth Development Program Leader. Jamila served as the CYFAR CITY Project Coordinator and worked to build capacity at Henry Street Settlement in lowe Manhattan, and the Police Athletic League (PAL) in the Bedford-Stuyvestant section of Brookly. After she complted her master's degree she joined the staff at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County where she served as the Program Manager of the 4-H Urban Outreach Program at West Village. In addition, in 2010, Jamila Walida joined the NYS 4-H team part-time and served as a Civic Engagement Coordinator and Communications Coordinator. In 2015, Jamila Walida joined the NYS 4-H team full-time and currently serves as the NYS 4-H Civic Engagement Specialist. Projects include serving as a Children Youth and Families at-Risk (CYFAR) Liaison, working with programs for the entire family, entrepreneurship projects, and programs that address food justice and creating sustainable food systems.