Niaz is the coordinating director of the Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance (NAMA). For the past 20 years, Niaz has been working on advancing the rights and ecological benefits of the small-scale fishing communities as a means of protecting global marine biodiversity.
NAMA works with small and medium scale fishermen on policy alternatives and market transformation strategies that support traditional fishing communities to have the smallest ecological footprint and the biggest food system, economic and social impact. In winter 2007/2008, NAMA and the Port Clyde, Maine community pioneered the Community Supported Fishery (CSF) model, which has since grown to 50 + across the Americas and Europe through the localcatch.org network.
Before joining NAMA, Niaz served as the Interim Chief Operations Office for the Healthy Building Network, and began working with small-scale, traditional, and indigenous fishing communities in the U.S. and from around the globe as a Greenpeace oceans and fisheries campaigner. Time Magazine named Niaz as a Hero For The Planet for this work.
Her fisheries articles appear regularly in Fishermen's Voice and SAMUDRA as well as a range of random publications. Niaz' work and approach have been noted in a number of books including Against the Tide, Deeper Shade of Green, The Spirit's Terrain, Vanishing Species, The Great Gulf, Swimming in Circles, A Troublemaker's Teaparty and The Doryman's Reflection.
She is a graduate of the Rockwood Leadership Program’s Leading From Inside Out as well as Art of Leadership trainings. She serves on the executive committee of the National Family Farm Coalition and Granite State Fish, as well as on the core team of Food Solutions New England. She recently served as an advisor to the Harvard Medical School's Center for Health and Global Environment.