The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is an organization that works to advance the interests of Arab-Americans. The organization was co-founded by former U.S. Senator James Abourek (D-SD) and left-wing activist James Zogby, who currently heads the Sanders Institute, a think tank created in the wake of the presidential campaign of self-described socialist U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.
Despite its claims to be a civil rights organization interested in peace, it has been accused of supporting terrorism. It has also given awards to well-known anti-Semites.
As of January 2019, the ADC and other organizations (including its 501(c)(3) affiliate ADC Research Institute) were involved in a lawsuit against the U.S. government related to a proposed citizenship question on the 2020 U.S. census.
Hate Crime Monitoring
As of 2018, the ADC has partnered with the FBI and left-of-center groups, including the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Human Rights Campaign, the NAACP, and the National Organization for Women, to monitor hate crimes.
In 2012, the ADC announced that it formed a partnership with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a controversial anti-Israel group. The two organizations worked together on voter outreach and voter registration in key states such as Florida, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
2020 Census Citizenship Question
In January 2019, a federal judge ruled that the Trump administration could not ask a citizenship question on the 2020 U.S. census. U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman found that a set of “NGO plaintiffs,” which included the ADC, its sister organization ADC Research Institute, New York Immigration Coalition, CASA de Maryland, and Make The Road New York, had legal standing to challenge the adoption of the question.
Award for Helen Thomas
In 2010, the ADC gave former Hearst Newspapers White House correspondent Helen Thomas its Mehdi Courage in Journalism award. Thomas resigned after she told a rabbi Jews need to “get the hell out of Palestine” and go to “Poland, Germany . . . and America, and anywhere else.”
“It is very sad. Certainly she doesn’t deserve courage in journalism, she may deserve courage in bigotry, and what is even sadder is that it is named after an anti-Semite and a bigot, Mohammad Mehdi. It is ironically sad that one bigot receives an award in memory of another bigot.”
The award is named for Mohammad T. Mehdi, an anti-Israeli activist who wrote a book defending the actions of the assassin of Senator Robert F. Kennedy (D-N.Y.), Sirhan Sirhan, and who made numerous anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic comments throughout his career.
Alleged Alignment with Assad Regime
In 2011, the ADC banned Syrian-American composer and pianist Malek Jandali from performing at their convention over a song choice. Jandali wanted to perform a song called “Watana Ana: I am my Homeland”; the song features themes of freedom and liberty, but did not specifically mention the Arab Spring or the Syrian Civil War. Jandali was asked by the group to change his song choice, but he refused; Jandali told Politico that ADC official Nabil Mohamad did not give an explanation for why the group rejected the song.
Amid the controversy, Politico reported that ADC chair Safa Rifka appeared to align with the Syrian government of Bashar al-Assad: Syrian ambassador to the U.S. Imad Moustapha had written that Rifka was one of his three “best friends” in Washington, D.C.
Sexual Harassment Allegations
In 2013, all women working for the ADC national office resigned over the handling of sexual harassment complaints by the organization. The ADC fired its then communications director, Raed Jarrar, who was critical of how the group dealt with sexual harassment allegations against its then-Michigan director Imad Hamad.
Jarrar claimed he was fired in retaliation for his criticism; he and four female employees had written letters criticizing ADC leadership. Chair Safa Rifka allegedly called upon then-president Warren David to fire the employees, but David refused. Eventually, David was removed from his post.
Abed A. Ayoub serves as the national legal & policy director. 
According to the 2015 tax filing, the ADC raised $492,830 and made $146,261 from program revenue. It raised a total of $703,287. It spent $901,209.  Its largest expense in 2015 was $361,002 on regional and local activities to promote its mission. Its second largest expense was $235,108 on its annual convention. 
Samer Khalaf earned $72,250 and Nabil Mohamad earned $47,501 from the group in 2015. 
The ADC has received funding from the Agape Foundation, the Open Society Foundations, and the Public Welfare Foundation. Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal provided funding for ADC’s headquarters building.