As a child growing up in a middle class home in Oswego, New York, Ali learned at a young age the importance of honesty, integrity, and hard work. She juggled two or three jobs while earning her degree at SUNY-Albany and was the first in her family to graduate from college. Ali has spent her entire professional life advocating for children and youth, building diverse coalitions and delivering real results on behalf of the most vulnerable populations.
A Record of Delivering Results
Ali served a four-year term on the Pound Ridge Town Board, where she quickly earned a reputation for tackling long-standing problems and getting things done. During her tenure (2011-2015), she spearheaded the revitalization of the struggling downtown business district and successfully secured $1.45 million in New York State Department of Transportation funds to improve infrastructure and pedestrian safety.
Ali tackled several pressing environmental issues: She successfully advocated for more stringent monitoring and water testing procedures at a local golf course and secured federal funding to assess the environmental impacts of a brownfield site.
As a town board member, Ali kept taxes low and helped pass the Sustainable Energy Loan Program, which provides low-interest loans to local businesses that invest in energy-saving measures. She served as town board liaison to the Planning Board, the Bedford/Lewisboro/Pound Ridge Drug Abuse Council, the Conservation Board, the Landmarks and Historic Preservation Commission, Energy Action Committee, and the Pound Ridge Business District.
A Career in Public Service
Ali has an impressive career of achieving meaningful results under extremely difficult circumstances. As a Peace Corps volunteer and Fulbright Scholar in the Baltic States, Ali set up health centers and worked with vulnerable youth. After receiving a Master of Public Health from the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, Ali co-founded the International Organization for Adolescents (IOFA), an international nonprofit organization dedicated to the elimination of human trafficking and exploitation of adolescents.
An internationally recognized expert on human trafficking and a longtime advocate for adolescent health, Ali established an anti-trafficking model for the U.S. Department of Justice, developed training programs for law enforcement, including Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as well as the New York State Office of Children and Family Services, and has formed numerous coalitions and task forces at the local, state, and national level. She is co-founder of the Westchester Anti-Trafficking Task Force and has served on several advisory committees, including the Catholic Charities USA Advisory Task Force on Domestic Child Trafficking and the National Child Welfare Advisory Board organized by U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS).
Ali’s work in combating the exploitation and trafficking of children and youth has been recognized by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Representative Nita Lowey, Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, and the Westchester Board of Legislators. She is currently a Leader in Residence at the Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at City College of New York and the Executive Director of IOFA.
- Pound Ridge Partnership, Founder and Board Member (2010-2012)
- Bedford Central School District, Budget Advisory Committee, Member (2009-2010)
- Subcommittee on School District Budget Comparison, Chair (2009-2010)
- Girl Scouts of America, Troop Leader (2009-2013)
- United States Peace Corps Volunteer (1994-1996)
The Joseph L. Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University,
Master of Public Health, 1998
State University of New York at Albany, Bachelor of Arts, Magna Cum Laude, 1993
Ali resides in Pound Ridge, New York with her husband, Allan Weinstein, and their four daughters.