What does service mean to you?

Question: What does service mean to you?

Queen Noor:    I…  It began in the early ‘60s.  I was growing up in Washington.  My father worked for President Kennedy.  And, for me, the ultimate career goal was the Peace Corps.  And while I never actually served in the Peace Corps, the inspiration of that time and of that movement in particular to serve, has motivated probably all my life and work since that time.  And I was very privileged to meet a man, many, many worlds away from where I was born who shared the same values and the same aspiration and commitment to public service that I had grown up with though we had grown up in such different environments.  King Hussein was that quintessential and unique actually middle Eastern leader for whom… who understood his role as a public servant and not as a more conventional ruler, if you will.  For him, it was about service, and that is what joined our hearts and then our work together.  So I was able to play a role in trying to bridge worlds and to take my experience prior to my marriage.  And then, the most important component that I have emphasized today and do throughout of listening and learning as I began my service as a public servant in the Middle East.  So my service began as a young woman marching and advocating for the mission of Martin Luther King and the [dreaming] of the Peace Corps in the United States in the ‘60s and then evolved into someone trying to bring these two worlds together and finding common ground in the Arab and the Muslim world with the values and ideals I’ve grown up within this country and it continues to this day.   

Queen Noor was inspired by President Kennedy and the Peace Corps.

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