Haniz graduated from the University of South Carolina with a degree in International Relations. She served as the Executive Director for the World Affairs Council Columbia, SC chapter where she also managed the sister city relationships for the City of Columbia. She also became involved in the Somali Bantu Refugee Program where she was responsible for over a dozen refugees and their integration into US society. After several years Haniz moved to Doha, Qatar where she directed INJAZ Qatar, an NGO that focuses on youth development, financial literacy, and entrepreneurship. A dedicated volunteer, she has over ten years of supporting, building, and giving back to the local Northern Virginia community for boards, schools, and political efforts where her three children attend school. Prior to joining USGLC as a senior development manager, she served as a consultant for USGLC for over a year.