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Taymullah  Abdur-Rahman

Taymullah Abdur-Rahman

Thought Leader, Social Entrepreneur, & Prison Abolitionist

Taymullah Abdur-Rahman

Thought Leader, Social Entrepreneur, & Prison Abolitionist


Imam Taymullah Abdur-Rahman is an educator, social entrepreneur, and prison abolitionist. He received an Islamic studies diploma in Saudi Arabia from Al Baseerah International Institute as well as licensure in Islamic theology and classical Arabic from various scholars. He holds a Master's in Global Interreligious Leadership from Andover Newton Theological School and is currently a doctoral candidate for Transformational Leadership at Boston University's School of Theology.

Imam Taymullah began his career as a member of the pre-teen pop group, Perfect Gentlemen in 1990. After scoring a top ten hit on Billboard, he left the group, got involved in the streets and became a delinquent. After ten years he accepted Islam.

Over the past twenty years he has served as a chaplain for the Massachusetts Department of Correction where he spent a decade teaching and counseling system-affected Muslims. In addition, he was the first paid Muslim chaplain at Harvard University where he also taught Islamic Polity at the Divinity School and functioned as theological field education supervisor for graduate students. Recruited by city officials, Imam Taymullah served as educator liaison for New England high schools where he instructed teachers in culturally responsive communication. He has taught various courses at Tufts University, Hellenic Holy Cross and Northeastern University.

Viewing social justice advocacy as a religious obligation, Imam Taymullah has led successful community campaigns that included criminal justice reforms, and housing renewal initiatives. He is the founder of Spentem, a commercial store and educational program in Massachusetts that uses restorative practices by pairing ex-convicted felons as educators for at-risk and court-involved youth. 

Imam Taymullah is currently senior educator in Islamic and Interreligious Studies at Hebrew College. His interests include teaching Restorative Islamic Theology, and advocating for prison abolition through holistic programming. He is the author of 44 Ways to Manhood, the memoir, American Imam, and host of the podcast All Restorative Everything.

Speech Topics

News Literacy in a Digital Age

Prison Abolition

Faith-Based Civic Engagement

Post-Civil War Reconstruction & the Fragility of Democracy

The Nuance of Islam in America