In addition to being a director of Heshima Kenya, Shermin Kruse is an equity partner at the law firm of Barack Ferrazzano, the author of the critically acclaimed, best-selling novel Butterfly Stitching, a contributor to the Huffington Post, co-founder and director of the peace organization, Pasfarda Arts and Culture Exchange, and a director of the ACLU of Illinois. Kruse, who spent her childhood in Iran dodging rockets and the morality police, immigrated with her family carrying little more than a few suitcases. Post immigration, Kruse graduated cum laude from the University of Michigan Law School and rose in the ranks of the professional world. In addition to her fiction writing and journalism, Kruse is a frequent speaker and writer on issues relating to human rights, racial diversity, and women in leadership. Kruse’s commitment to equal rights, professional development and peace-dialogue is international. From traveling to the Turkey-Syria border to interface with Syrian refugee children to serving as a commentator on NPR’s Worldview on foreign policy issues, Kruse is globally dedicated to raising awareness. In November of 2015, Kruse was named one of Chicago’s most influential women by Chicago Business Journal, and in July of 2014 she was named as one of Chicago’s 100 Women of Inspiration by Today’s Chicago Magazine.