Profiles in Justice: Raychan Abdallah
Raychan Abdallah, a liaison in the Community Engagement Unit of the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office (DAO), is a first generation Comorian-American and Temple University Fox School of Business graduate. She is among the first generation of Comorians to be educated in the U.S. In 1999, she moved from Comoros to France. After spending two years living in France, she then moved to the United States.
“I would not be at the DAO and working with Philadelphians without my mother. Whenever I am asked about my mom, the first thing I say, always, is that I don’t deserve her. I was lucky enough to have been raised by the hardest working, most supportive, and motivational person I have ever met in my 25 years of life,” Abdallah says. “Having risen to success from not even speaking the language, she continues to encourage and push my siblings and I toward being our most fulfilled selves. Being a Black Muslim immigrant has proven to have many heart-wrenching challenges, but I find peace in knowing I have the perfect role model in overcoming those obstacles.”
Before joining the DAO, Abdallah worked at the Columbia North YMCA creating spaces of empowerment and growth through roles as a before-and after-school counselor, dance and cheer coach, kids cooking teacher, and arts and science camp instructor. While there, she began interning at the City of Philadelphia’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, which led her to be hired at the DAO in 2017. She started in the Juvenile Unit as a Victim/Witness Coordinator for the Youth Aid Panel Program, Crossover Court, and Juvenile Drug Treatment Court before joining the Community Engagement Unit.
As a Community Engagement Liaison, Abdallah works to maintain strong relationships between the DAO and community residents and stakeholders in South, Southwest, and Center City Philadelphia. She works closely with prosecutors assigned to the Gun Crimes Strategies and Prevention Collaborative — a program focused on reducing gun violence in Philadelphia and seeking justice and support for victims of violent crime. Abdallah values the ability to create a space where young people and marginalized communities can express their concerns and offer solutions regarding public safety and criminal justice reform.
When she is not at work or out speaking with community stakeholders and residents, Abdallah can be found kickboxing, harmonizing with her sisters, or playfully teasing her mother and brother at their weekly brunches.