Samir Selmanovic, immersion curator

Samir SelmanovicSamir Selmanovic is the author of It’s Really All About God, a book about understanding and collaboration with the “religious other.” He writes and lectures about interdependence, leadership, and community engagement at universities and other institutions globally, and has been profiled in The New York Times (Click here to see the 9/11 Keynote at Harvard Divinity).  He has an M.A. in Psychology, an M.Div, and a Ph.D. in Education.  Samir also serves as the Director of Consulting at Get Storied.

Samir was born into complexity. He grew up in a culturally (but not religiously) Muslim home, in the staunchly atheist environment of socialist Yugoslavia (now Croatia). During his compulsory military service when he was eighteen, he had a spiritual awakening, and ultimately converted to Christianity.

Samir has worked as a Christian pastor and community organizer for over twelve years. In 2002, the organization Muslims Against Terrorism honored him for his community leadership on the Upper East Side of Manhattan during the aftermath of 9/11. He later transferred to Southern California where he co-founded a vibrant young-adult congregation based on community engagement and shared leadership. He returned to New York City in 2007, to start the non-profit organization called Faith House Manhattan, an inter-religious “community of communities” and a co-laboratory of interdependence.

Samir tends to miss subway stops while reading, supports chocolate as a food group, tries to revive his lost marathoner’s mojo, and has been romancing his wife Vesna every day since they met more than 20 years ago. If he had to do it all over again, Samir would talk less and cook more.