Oral History Interview with Minister Troy Muhammad on February 20, 2021

Oral History Interview with Minister Troy Muhammad on February 20, 2021



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Muhammad, Minister Troy


Ahmad, Munimah; Perkins, Dr. Alisa (Research Director)


Oral history interview with Minister Troy Muhammad conducted by Munimah Ahmad on February 20, 2021. Interview written by Dr. Alisa Perkins (Research Director) and Munimah Ahmad. Minister Troy Muhammad was born in Detroit, Michigan in 1970 and raised in a Christian household by his grandmother, who was originally from Georgia. When he was seventeen years old, Minister Muhammad encountered the teachings of Minister Louis Farrakhan while incarcerated. This encounter led him to embrace Islam, join the Nation of Islam, and begin a lifetime of service to others. Since his release, Minister Muhammad has taken on several important leadership positions in the community. As a supervisor for truck drivers, Minister Muhammad facilitated the hiring of more than 200 formerly incarcerated men, helping to ensure their stability and combat the stigma of incarceration. He also worked at Goodwill Industries, motivated by the opportunity to help young people secure jobs and educational opportunities. He currently works at Wayne Metro Community Action Agency, helping provide housing to people in need. Minister Muhammad holds the distinction of serving as State Representative for Minister Louis Farrakhan and as Minister of Muhammad Mosque #1. As part of his role as mosque leader, Minister Muhammad helps organize the many different social services, education, and advocacy programs that the mosque offers to the community. In his interview, Minister Muhammad outlines the long history of the Nation of Islam in Detroit and how Muhammad Mosque #1 continues its legacy of moral leadership, service, and giving, while advancing the Nation of Islam's historical role as a significant source of support for people in prison. Over several years, Minister Muhammad has played a major role in organizing Saviours' Day in Detroit, helping to successfully draw thousands to the city from across the country. In the interview, Minister Muhammad reflects on Saviours' Day and its importance as an event that brings together the local and national Muslim community and promotes outreach and fellowship among many diverse groups in Detroit.

Date of Interview


Location of Interview

Detroit, MI (Muhammad Mosque #1)


African-American history, African-American Muslims, Muhammad Ali, Black Church, Christianity, Civil Rights Movement, Commercial Driver's License, Community development, COVID-19 pandemic, Dearborn, Detroit, Detroit Public Schools, Do for self, Drug epidemic, Edison Elementary School, El-Hajj, Malik El-Shabazz, Minister Louis Farrakhan, Father's Day for the Black Man, Financial literacy, Food security, For-profit prisons, Formerly incarcerated citizens, Fruit of Islam (FOI), Georgia, Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit, the Great Migration, Housing programs, Housing security, Islam, Islam in America, Islamic studies, Islamophobia, King, Jr., Dr. Martin Luther, Malcolm X, Michigan, Million Man March, Moorish Science Temple of America, Mosque #1, Muhammad Mosque #1, Muhammad University of Islam, Captain Roscoe Muhammad, Master Wallace Fard Muhammad, Minister Abdul Rahman Muhammad (Rock of the South), Minister Ava Muhammad, Minister Hakim Muhammad, Minister Hasty Muhammad, Minister Rasul Muhammad, The Honorable Elijah Muhammad, Veronica Muhammad, Murray-Wright High School, Muslim Americans, Muslim Girls Training (MGT), Muslims, Nation of Islam, Neighborhood revitalization, Rosa Parks, Peter Vetal Junior High School, Prison industrial system, Prison ministry, Prisoner advocacy, Prophet Muhammad, Redford High School, Religious leadership, Saviours' Day, Self-development, Self-improvement, ‘Self-Improvement: the Basis for Community Development', Self-taught scholarship, Skilled trades, Summary, Temple No. 1, ‘the Final Call', ‘The Life of Booker T. Washington’, Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency, West Detroit


Africana Studies | American Studies | Civic and Community Engagement | Digital Humanities | Inequality and Stratification | Islamic Studies | Nonprofit Administration and Management | Politics and Social Change | Prison Education and Reentry | Race and Ethnicity | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies | Religion | Urban Studies and Planning


Interview conducted by Munimah Ahmad at the Muhammad Mosque #1. Interview written by Dr. Alisa Perkins (Research Director) and Munimah Ahmad. Interview recorded under the direction of Supervising Producer Malikah Shabazz and Supporting Supervisor Abdul-Zahir Sadid. Videography by Zayd Walid. Video Edited by: June Pearson. Transcribed by: Sara Faraj. Transcription edited by: Dr. Alisa Perkins. Metadata prepared by: Sophia Wimberley. Metadata edited by: Dr. Alisa Perkins.



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Rights Statement

Dream of Detroit Interviews were made possible by funding from the Pillars Grant and Whiting Foundation. Content is for educational purposes only and non-reproducible; interviews are not to be duplicated, but may be linked through ScholarWorks with appropriate attribution. Please direct any questions about copyright to scholarworks@wmich.edu.


Pillars Fund and Whiting Foundation


Dream of Detroit

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Oral History Interview with Minister Troy Muhammad on February 20, 2021