Board of Directors
Ziaulhaq Ghafoori (Booyah)
Ziaulhaq “Booyah” Ghafoori is the President and CEO of the Interpreting Freedom Foundation, 501(c)3 Non-Profit Organization that honors the service of interpreters and advocates for their needs. Booyah is a Special Immigrant Visa recipient from Afghanistan who served as a combat interpreter and a cultural adviser assigned to US Army Special Forces from 2003 to 2014.
Despite the death threats he received from individuals while in Afghanistan, he continued to dedicate his time and service to helping the US Military and the mission. Booyah also served as the Vice President of a logistics company that facilitated inter-governmental logistical services in the Central Asian Region.
Booyah has first hand experience and is familiar with the war and the effect it has on people. Perhaps one of the most life-defining moments of Booyah’s life was on April 6, 2008, when he accompanied a combined team of Special Operations Command and Afghan Commandos in the Nuristan Province – Shok Valley to capture a high-level target. His team fought for almost seven hours and Booyah lost his best friend and fellow interpreter, CK. Despite this, he pushed through the battle and helped carry his wounded team members to safety for the next six hours. After the battle ended many in the combined force were wounded and many of the US service members received awards and medals.
At CK’s funeral, as a sign of respect and solidarity, Booyah and Co-Founder Bahroz Mohmand along with other interpreters were given commemorative Purple Hearts from the team Commander. Booyah was awarded a Purple Heart and a Combat Infantryman Badge for being wounded in action and carrying wounded soldiers to safety.
Today, Booyah has made a home in the United States. He has increased his network of friends and supporters and has found his calling in advocating and helping his fellow interpreters and US Veterans.
“I will be available for them to help them again and again.”
Bahroz Mohmand (Blade)
Bahroz Mohmand (Blade) was born on May 8, 1989 in Kabul Afghanistan and graduated from Abdul Hadi Dawi High School in 2004. After high school, Blade joined the United States Army Special Forces as a combat interpreter and cultural adviser. He engaged in combat missions for nine years.
During his time of service Blade experienced the loss of numerous friends and teammates, but he never imagined that he would also lose his longtime childhood friend and schoolmate, Special Forces Interpreter CK. Even though he himself had been wounded in the battle and lost his best friend, Blade never backed down and was awarded a Purple Heart and Combat Infantryman Badge for his relentless dedication and support.
In December 2012, Blade and his wife were granted Special Immigration Visas to seek safety in the United States, but soon after he arrived he found that he didn’t have the support he had hoped for. In January 2013, he and his wife lost their newborn baby during childbirth. They were devastated and heartbroken. Adding to the heartbreak, they couldn’t find a place to lay their child to rest. Blade didn’t have the resources required to cover the burial costs and finding assistance was an impossible task. After raising more than $4,000 Blade and his wife were finally able to give their son a proper burial.
Soon after the loss of his son, in May 2013, Blade was delivering pizza for Domino’s Pizza. One night he was brutally attacked by 3 unknown men. Blade was beaten so badly he was knocked unconscious. They stole everything he had and left him there bruised and bleeding. At first, this attack left Blade feeling unsafe and unwelcome, but he never gave up on the American dream. He works relentlessly every day to create a life of peace, love, and freedom. He would like other interpreters to know that when hard times hit, there will be others who understand and have been there to help pick them up and help them find the way.
Sean P. Kilbane
Sean Kilbane is a forward-thinking and people-centric business development and marketing professional with broad leadership and program development experience within fast-moving and highly regulated industries.
Throughout his career, he has incorporated many of the traits and skills that he acquired from military service and special operations training, including relationship building, influence operations, and his ability to solve complex problems through analysis to assist in making hard decisions. Additionally, his strong interpersonal skills and ability to think one step ahead have helped him build high-achieving and loyal teams.
Besides thriving in independent and team settings, Sean excels in deadline-driven and fast-paced conditions. He is known for balancing multiple projects and adjusting quickly to business needs without sacrificing sound judgment and quality.
Sean Kilbane joined the Army Reserves in 2003. In 2007 he deployed to Afghanistan and supported the 101st Airborne Division. Upon his return, he began a career in Law Enforcement, working as a Policeman.
In 2009 Sean was selected to serve as a member and Team Leader of a Special Operations team (Psychological Operations). In 2011 he deployed to Helmand Province Afghanistan, and his units of assignment were United States Marine Corps, 1st Battalion 9th Marines, 2nd Battalion 6th Marines, Regimental Combat Team (RCT) 6, and 1st Recon Battalion.
After his second deployment to Afghanistan, he was honorably discharged. His awards and decorations include the Combat Action Badge, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with two Campaign Star, two Army Commendation Medals, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon awarded three times, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with M Device, and the NATO Medal.
Sean moved to the Charleston SC region and returned to law enforcement. While working on patrol operations, Sean conducted a traffic stop that progressed into a gunfight with a career criminal. After this critical incident, Sean looked for a new mission in the service of others, which is how he ended up working in politics.
While working within politics, Sean has consulted on and staffed multiple political races, including two Presidential races and a tenure as the General Campaign Manager for a United States Congressman.
Sean has been featured on Fox News. Sean has also contributed to presidential campaigns by contributing to the development of Military and Veteran community engagement strategic outreach programs; this was the topic of his 2017 CPAC speech when he was an invited speaker.
Grant L. Campbell, MD
A native North Carolinian, Dr. Campbell grew up in a single-parent home often relying on the charity of others to make ends meet. A gifted student, he gained admission to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and earned a degree in Health Policy and Administration with Honors and a minor in Chemistry. He was accepted to medical school at the same institution where he earned his Doctorate in Medicine while serving as Student Body President. He completed his residency in Obstetrics & Gynecology in Charlotte, North Carolina where he served as President of the House Staff and joined a private practice in the area after graduation. After the events of 9/11, he felt the need to serve his country after learning of the shortage of surgeons in the military and joined the United States Army Medical Corps Reserve graduating Officers Basic Leadership Course in 2009 where he was chosen to be Platoon Sergeant by his fellow soldiers. He was deployed once to Kuwait and Iraq and twice to Afghanistan as a General/Trauma Surgeon with his final deployment being with a Forward Surgical Team attached to the 3rd Group, Special Forces. He finished his time with the Army in 2017 and was honorably discharged as a Lt. Colonel and earned, among others, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the NATO Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Meritorious Service Medal. He now lives in Concord, NC with his wife of 24 years and two children where he practices medicine, serves as the Chairman of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Atrium Health-University City, and is a passionate advocate for military and veterans issues, healthcare, and electing more veterans to public office.