About Us

Albanian American Cultural Center

View our brief video entitled, “A Home Away From Home.”

Our History

The first major migration of Albanian Americans to the DFW area came from the east coast starting in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. Most came for economic opportunities and began to open pizzerias and Italian restaurants. A majority of these families consisted of Albanian Americans that descended from Kosova and Macedonia. The migration continued steadily through the 1980’s and families began to move in from other regions like Chicago and Detroit. By the late 1980’s, it is estimated that the Albanian American population reached a total of 1,500 in the DFW metroplex. Word spread through other Albanian American communities of the successful restaurant businesses in North Texas and this added to the increase in migration of Albanian Americans to DFW as they pursued the American dream of building their own business and raising a family in a great and safe community. It was during these times that the local Albanian Americans began and built our current organization, The Albanian American Cultural Center.

In the early 1990’s communism fell in Albania and the DFW area had its second major influx of Albanian Americans, this time the majority of them came from Albania proper. The exact numbers are not known. Internal estimates say that the numbers are between 500 to 1,000. Many of them started to work for other established Albanian Americans with Italian restaurants and pizzerias and now they have their own business and have become successful 

In the late 1990’s the Balkan wars moved into Kosova.  Our local Albanian American community organized quickly and raised support for the victims of the war.  After the war DFW had a third large migration of Albanians and they came from war torn Kosova. The members of the Albanian American Cultural Center (AACC) helped many of these Kosovar refugees settle in North Texas. As with the Albanians from Albania in the early 1990’s, many Kosovar Albanians worked for community members restaurants and now have their own successful businesses.

In the 2000’s the Albanian American community in DFW grew rapidly.   The community faced growing pains and another center was started in Bedford Texas, The Albanian American Heritage Center (AAHC). A few years passed and the differences settled and the healing began. Now the leadership has made the commitment to bring both centers together and eventually combine them as one and build one grand, large and centralized community center. Currently the AACC and the AAHC work together as one and are progressing toward one identity. 

In this current decade we see that the Albanian American population is growing more than any other time in the past. Mostly due to economic reasons. The weak economy in other parts of the country has made the vibrant and strong economy of DFW very attractive for more Albanian Americans to make the move and settle here. It is difficult to estimate the current population. Most are of the opinion that there are 6,000 Albanian Americans now living in North Texas with 300 owned pizzerias and Italian restaurants. Many are opening Sports Bars and Breakfast restaurants. We have created an association that leverages the buying power of all our restaurants and helps contribute to our center, check our Partner Program tab for more information. The community is more diverse than before with young people pursuing higher degrees and venturing into professional jobs. The AACC is working to bring more programs and developing our nonprofit to become more effective and to have a greater impact on the local Albanian American community. We embrace all new Albanian Americans moving to North Texas and encourage them to become involved with our organization. Please sign up for our blog on our homepage and stay in touch with future events and news from our community.

Leadership

Board of Directors

Amit Hajro
Avdi Krasniqi
Dino Hida
Dzezair Ahmeti
Enver Kolenovic
Feti Staraveci
Gani Fejzaj
Gjevat Neziraj
Harun Ceka
Hasan Ukperaj
Hysen Zeqaj
Imer Bardhi
Ismail Krasniqi
Ismet Smajli
Lazim Lusha
Ludovik Tetaj
Mentor Doko
Nazar Mehmeti (Board Chairman)
Nebih Azemi
Nimetula Kaba
Rakip Lusha
Shaban Krasniqi
Silver Qerimi
Ylber Korca
Zeka Nokshiqi
Zenun Halili
Zeqir Lokaj 

Staff

Hasim Isufaj
469-867-0672
h_isufaj@yahoo.com

Kreshnik Bishani
940-206-7393
n_bishani@yahoo.com

Honorary Board of Directors

Adem Copani
Bedri Saliu
Gjergi Kalaj
Muzafer Doko
Qernal Vraniqi
Sabri Arjo

kreshnik
Kreshnik Bishani
Executive Director

Nazar MehmetiNazar Mehmeti
Board Chairman

Board Chairman

On 24 February 2014, the board of directors held an election for board chairman for the next four year term. Nazar Mehmeti won the election 16 votes for and 4 votes against. He proclaimed his mandate to combine the two current nonprofit organizations that serve our local Albanian American communities as one. Board chairman Mehmeti is focused on growing our nonprofit and welcoming all new members as our local Albanian American community continues to gain more Albanian Americans from other parts of the country. Another goal chairman Mehmeti will work to achieve is to focus our attention to our mission statement and to elect new bylaws to help our nonprofit become more efficient and stable.

Events

We are dedicated to bringing you events that promote our Albanian heritage & culture. We welcome all our community to participate in & enjoy these activities.

Scholarship

Sign up below to download the 2016 Soaring Eagle Scholarship Application. Deadline is January 31, 2016.