During an uplifting ceremony on Zoom, Monawar took up the role from Amanda Ponsonby MBE. The theme of Monawar’s Shrieval Year will be thanking and celebrating Oxfordshire’s COVID-19 heroes – people who have made exceptional contributions to their communities during the pandemic.
Imam Monawar Hussain is Chaplain at both Eton College and Oxford University Hospitals Trust. He is Founder of the Oxford Foundation, which promotes religious and racial harmony, and helped to devise an education programme for young people to help tackle violent extremism.
Monawar was sworn in at an official ceremony on 8th April 2021, presided over by The Honourable Sir Akhlaq Choudhury, who said: “As the first Muslim to be appointed to the High Court Bench, it is a particular pleasure and honour for me to preside over this ceremony, and to welcome you to office.” He is the first Muslim High Sheriff in Oxfordshire and will use his role to continue his life’s work bringing together people from all communities across the county, supported by a team of six Shrieval Chaplains, who innovatively have been appointed to represent all of the major faiths practised in Oxfordshire.
He picks up the year-long honorary position from Amanda Ponsonby MBE, who has spent much of her Shrieval year in lockdown but nonetheless succeeded in supporting a large number of community organisations across the county, and in particular OCF.
Monawar said: “During the past very difficult year, many of us will have witnessed first hand the acts of altruistic kindness, compassion and love that have been truly inspirational. Fellow citizens from all walks of life, faiths, cultures, professions and communities, have come together looking out for the vulnerable and the needy. I will therefore be dedicating my year as High Sheriff to thanking and celebrating Oxfordshire’s heroes – individuals, voluntary groups and businesses drawn from all walks of life who have made exceptional contributions to their communities all across the county.”
He will make his High Sheriff Awards throughout his period in office, and nominations cam be made online here.