Maine GOP launches Portland Multi-Cultural Center

Maine GOP Multi-Cultural Center Chair Suheir Alaskari speaks to press following the Grand Opening of the Center

PORTLAND — The Maine Republican Party today held a Grand Opening for its new Multi-Cultural Center on Munjoy Hill in Portland. The packed event featured a series of speakers focused on improving Maine.

“This is about people working to improve their community and country and the resonance of Republican values like freedom across our great state,” Maine GOP Chair Dr. Demi Kouzounas said. “We’re opening this center because we want to help people from all walks of life to prosper and learn. Our goal as Republicans is to build a better, stronger Maine and we appreciate all the people who have signed up to help us. We will be working together here in Portland and across the state to make Maine a better place.”

Speakers included:

  • Governor Paul LePage
  • Maine GOP Chair Dr. Demi Kouzounas
  • Ed Thelander, Republican nominee for Congress (ME-01)
  • Suheir Alaskari, Chair MEGOP Multi-Cultural Center
  • Aqeel Mohialdeen, Vice-Chair MEGOP Multi-Cultural Center
  • Ray Richardson, Emcee
Grand Opening participants speak to the media after the event


The Center is a volunteer-driven effort created by folks who are energized about reaching new communities to assist them and show them that the GOP is an active force for positive change in their communities. The Center will provide educational opportunities both in political training to amplify their voices within the community, but also assistance with job training, immigration assistance, language training, and much more.

The chair of the Center, Suheir Alaskari, was born and raised in Baghdad, Iraq. She worked with US government projects in Baghdad and moved to Maine in 2014. She studied in Sweden and France, and settled down in Portland in 2017. Suheir has a Bachelor’s degree in microbiology, a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and Economy, and a Master’s Degree of Policy, Planning and Management from Muskie School of Public Service/ USM in Maine. She is certified as a Human Rights Consultant. Suheir teaches immigrant women during weekends on self-empowerment and career development with the team of the Charting Your Course Program, and she is a member of the City of Portland’s Office of Economic Opportunity advisory council.

Suheir lives in Portland.

The vice-chair, Aqeel Mohialdeen, is originally from Baghdad, Iraq. In 2010, he came to the United States as an immigrant. Aqeel was awarded a special immigrant visa for his outstanding and faithful work for the U.S. government development projects in Iraq (USAID). In 1999, after obtaining his bachelor’s degree in graphic design from the University of Baghdad, he worked in many fields as a graphic designer, a photographer, a journalist, a documentary filmmaker, and an outreach and multimedia specialist. In 2021, Aqeel earned his bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Southern Maine.

Currently, Aqeel works for Preble Street as a caseworker, a volunteer with the League of Women Voters of Maine, a freelance graphic designer, and a marketing/ communication consultant for microfinance projects overseas.

To get involved with the Center or any other Maine GOP efforts, visit MaineGOP.com.

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