Alam arrived in the United States from Pakistan in 1987, at the age of ten, and resided in the rural middle-class town of Ellington, Connecticut. In 1997, after a failed engagement to a Muslim girl while he was attending Northeastern University, he started a Yahoo! Group for LGBT Muslims that quickly became very popular. He founded Al-Fatiha in 1998 and served as its President until stepping down in 2004.
He is a member of the National Religious Leadership Roundtable and the LGBT Program of Human Rights Watch.