An immigrant from Morocco with more than 17 years of experience in the restaurant industry, Mamdouh worked at some of New York’s finest restaurants, and was finally lead Shop Steward for H.E.R.E. Local 100 at Windows on the World. After September 11th, he worked with five other displaced workers to create the Immigrant Workers’ Assistance Alliance (IWAA), a Rockefeller Foundation-funded project to provide support to displaced workers and families of victims.
In order to provide ongoing services to the hundreds of displaced workers and the families of the victims, Mamdouh formed ROC-NY in 2002. In 2008, he co-founded ROC-United, the country’s first national restaurant worker organization.
A Columbia Revson Fellow, Mamdouh co-authored a book about his life, The Accidental American, together with the Executive Director of the Applied Research Center, Rinku Sen. A movie is now being made about the book.