For over a decade Mariam has been covering news in Chicago. She started with NPR affiliate WBEZ, and worked as a political reporter for Illinois Radio Network. Currently, she’s an anchor and reporter with CBS radio. Many of her stories air nationally. Mariam recently was on the team that won the national Edward R. Murrow award for best breaking news, she also won 3rd place in the silver dome awards for best spot news coverage in the shooting of Amari Brown. Mariam is the first woman in hijab to work on-air in commercial radio in the U.S. She has covered everything from presidential visits, to federal court cases, to protests and shootings in the city. Mariam also was asked to come on as a TV host for a startup channel called Touchvision in Chicago. Her videos aired on TV and online. They were some of the most viewed opinion videos for the station.
Mariam studied theater and classical voice in college, and also helped launch the first ever American Muslim talent night at the University of Illinois where men and women performed, it was held two years in a row while she was on campus (2004, and 2005).
In Chicago, Mariam secured a talent agent and was the first Muslim woman in hijab that was ever brought on to the agency. She’s done everything from extra work on a big budget film, to industrial videos and photo shoots, and voice overs. Her photo has gone viral and has appeared (without her permission) in ad campaigns in Singapore and Indonesia. Mariam studied improv, sketch comedy and standup through various programs in Chicago. She was the first woman in hijab to study at the Second City training center and to pass two rounds of auditions into the famed conservatory program and she also completed the music conservatory program there as well as the improv program. Mariam has also studied guitar at the Old Town School of Folk Music.
Hijabtrendz.com was launched in 2007 as a platform that explored fashion, beauty and entertainment from the point of view of an American Muslim woman. It was the first of its kind in the US and one of a few internationally in existence at the time garnering nearly 800,000 fans on Facebook through word of mouth. Her hijab tutorial videos were some of the first ever made on Youtube, and now there are 1000’s of young women who have followed suit with videos and blogs of their own.