Representative Ako Abdul-Samad
House District 35
As National & International Motivational Systemic Speaker, Activist, Author, Photographer, Business Owner and Counselor, Ako Abdul-Samad has impacted the lives of thousands of individuals and families for over five decades.
He is serving his seventh term in the House of Representatives. Ako serves on the following Committees: Administration and Regulation Appropriations Subcommittee, Environmental Protection, Ranking Member of the International Relations, and Public Safety Committees, and Agriculture. Ako is a member of the Iowa Democratic Black Caucus and a member of the Iowa Legislative Black Caucus.
Presently chairman of the International National Organization American Muslim Alliance.
Ako was elected and served on the Des Moines School Board and held office as the Vice President of the Des Moines Area School Board
As the CEO & Founder of Creative Visions Human Development Institute in Des Moines, Iowa, Ako Abdul-Samad established this non-profit organization in 1996. Serving as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Ako established and directed business functions that include Employment Assistance, Support Services, Healthcare Management, Community Development, Advocacy, and consultancy on Culture & Diversity Education.
Ako created “From Pain 2 Power.org” (or) “From Pain 2 Power.com” A network developed to aid in bringing individuals together as a collective whole, with the purpose of aiding those who are struggling with core pain. Now, no one has to ever be alone. This is a special place where people connect with each other, to share their feelings and have a safe place to heal. Eventually having the strength to turn their personal pain to power, and understanding that it is a choice
Cofounder and Coordinator of YMCA Downtown Teen Program
A member of International Civil Rights Solidarity Movement
Ako published his first book, “A Deeper Truth, Revelations of the Soul”, a collection of poems depicting personal experiences and events within his own life’s journey and journeys of those he has encountered.
A graduate of the National Conference of Black Lawyers Community College of Law and International Diplomacy.
Ako has received a number of awards, just to name a few….
In October of 2018, Ako was honored with an award giving recognition towards his tireless efforts within the community, given with gratitude by Filipino American Society at the Filipino Fiesta in Iowa.
In June of 2018, Ako was honored with the, “Community Outreach Achievement Award“, in awareness to the impact he and his staff at Creative Visions provides to the citizens of Polk County Iowa. This particular award brings to notice, the unspoken voices he fights each day, this applies to all concerned citizens whom seek justice.
2015 Representative of the Year Award, Iowa Fraternal Alliance
Ako was honored with the 2015 Bankers Trust’s Award of Accomplishment & Contribution, in observation of Black History Month, this award recognizes for his work and dedication that has directly impacted the countess lives across Iowa. The award acknowledges and commends Ako’s spirit of service that continues to inspire those around him.
Ako received the Iowa Black Business Summit 2014 Alexander Clark Award.
In 2009, Ako received the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Activist award, for his demonstration of commitment toward improving the quality of life in his community and in the state of Iowa.
In 2004, Ako was awarded the National Caring Award, the Caring Institute seeks to identify, honor, and reinforce the activities of particularly caring Americans; those who enable the human race by transcending themselves in service to others by dedicating the better parts of their lives to helping those in need. They have created solutions where others have despaired of finding answers. The power of Ako’s example inspires a new standard of social responsibility.