Hesham Tillawi claims to have immigrated to the United States in October 1978. His original name was Heshay Mohd. He changed his name to Hesham Mohd and uses Tillawi as a stage name for his television program and political activism. He has a doctoral degree from Bernelli University, an unaccredited distance-learning institution located in Virginia.
In 2004, Tillawi began broadcasting Current Issues, a two-hour interview/call-in show on a local-access cable channel in Lafayette. The show was briefly picked up by Bridges TV, an American Muslim television network with cable and satellite distribution agreements in major American media markets, but was dropped from the schedule in June 2006. Current Issues continues to be broadcast on public-access cable and is also available over the Internet.
Tillawi is a member of the National Arab American Journalists Association (NAAJA), an organization of Arab-American journalists founded in 1999 that is meant to serve as a professional network for Arab-American journalists in the United States and abroad. The NAAJA also monitors the news media for racist stereotypes against Arabs.