Masry said her son enlisted in the National Guard in 1997 and found himself sent to Afghanistan after the 911 terrorist attacks in the United States. She became an outspoken opponent of the terrorism, the Patriot Act and wars against Iraq and Afghanistan.
She sees herself as a bridge between the US and Saudi Arabia, helping each country better understand each other.
After four unsuccessful attempts to be elected to the California Assembly as a Democrat in a heavily Republican district, Masry still saw herself as a winner for having shown people that women who come from Saudi Arabia have a voice and aren't afraid to use it.
Masry, who wrote "Running for All the Right Reasons: A Saudi-born Woman’s Pursuit of Democracy" about her experiences, today aims to inspire others to use their voices and the enormous political freedoms of the United States to make a difference. Education is key, she says.
Amer Ahmed, associate director of multi-ethnic student affairs at the University of Michigan, spoke about "Islamophobia: Beyond Myths to Social Change." His multimedia presentation ranged from outlining the basics of Islam to showing clips from the Muslims in America episode of "30 Days," the Morgan Spurlock television show.