Meet some noteworthy Arab Americans

Man in white tux holding trophy (© AP Images)
Rami Malek holds his 2016 Emmy Award for outstanding lead actor in a drama series. (© AP Images)

More than 3.5 million Americans claim Arab ancestry. While Arab Americans constitute only about 1 percent of the U.S. population, their contributions to science, the arts and many other disciplines are noteworthy.

Meet four Arab Americans who have been in the headlines recently.

Rami Malek

Los Angeles native Rami Malek (seen above) is the son of Egyptian immigrants. He stars in the TV series Mr. Robot, which airs on the USA Network — and his portrayal of a cybersecurity engineer turned hacker won him the 2016 Emmy Award for best actor in a drama series.

Malek recently spoke with IndieWire magazine about his approach to acting. “I never want to look back on performances where I could have done more,” he said.

Mona Hanna-Attisha

Two people sitting at microphones (© AP Images)
Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, left, and Michigan’s Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley speak with reporters about eliminating child lead poisoning in Michigan. (© AP Images)

Mona Hanna-Attisha, a British-born Iraqi American, is a Michigan pediatrician and public-health advocate. In 2015, she held a press conference to announce that a water crisis in Flint, Michigan, was exposing local children to dangerous levels of lead.

Although initially ridiculed by Michigan officials, Hanna-Attisha was soon vindicated, and her role in exposing the Flint water crisis earned her a spot on Time magazine’s list of Most Influential People of 2016.

Oday Shakar

Man and woman holding hands (© AP Images)
Oday Shakar, right, walks with a model wearing one of his designs at a Los Angeles fashion show. (© AP Images)

Oday Shakar, another Californian, is rocking the runways with his glamorous creations. A fashion designer of Iraqi descent, he trained in Los Angeles at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising before launching his own label in 2009.

At New York Fashion Week in September 2016, he told CNN that his work draws upon “two worlds,” combining Western silhouettes with geometric patterns that recall Islamic architecture. Shakar’s designs are worn by actresses Sandra Bullock and Sofia Vergara, among others, at red-carpet events.

Huda Zoghbi

Four people smiling (© AP Images)
Neuroscientist Huda Zoghbi, second from left, stands backstage at the fifth annual Breakthrough Prize ceremony in Mountain View, California. (© AP Images)

Huda Zoghbi, of Houston, is a physician and neuroscientist whose research on rare brain disorders has shed light on more common conditions such as autism, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Born in Lebanon, she joined the faculty of Baylor College of Medicine in 1988 and has received multiple honors, including the 2017 Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences.

Scientific careers are “thrilling,” she told the National Institutes of Health, because “there’s the excitement of coming in every day to find new discoveries.”