Board


Manuel José Cepeda (Colombia)
Jurist, Universidad de los Andes

Manuel José Cepeda Espinosa served as a magistrate on the Constitutional Court of Colombia from 2001 to 2009 and was president of the Court from June 2005 to April 2006. From 1987 to 1990, he served as presidential advisor for legal affairs to Colombian President Virgilio Barco Vargas. From 1990 to 1991, he was advisor to Colombian President César Gaviria Trujillo for the Constituent Assembly of Colombia. From 1993 to 1995, he was Ambassador of Colombia to UNESCO and thereafter to the Helvetic Confederation (1995-1996). He served as Dean of the Universidad de los Andes Law School from 1996 to 2000. The author of several constitutional law books, he graduated Magna Cum Laude from Universidad de los Andes in 1986 and received his Master of Laws from Harvard Law School in 1987. In 1993, he received the Order of Boyacá from the President of Colombia.

John T Green (United States)
Treasurer

Professor of Professional Practice/Nonprofit Management, The New School

John has over thirty years of senior financial management experience in education and nonprofit organizations, including the New York City Department of Education (Deputy Executive Director of Budget Operations and Executive Director of the Office of Charter Schools), City University of New York (Assistant University Budget Director) and Human Rights Watch (Director of Operations). Most recently he served as the University Budget Director at The New School and Associate Dean of The Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy at The New School and now teaches part-time in the school’s graduate program of nonprofit management. He was a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in Cote d’Ivoire and has served on the board of directors at Gay Men’s Health Crisis (New York), the Betty Ford Center (California) and Isabella Geriatric Center (New York). John is a graduate of Maryknoll College (Illinois) and has an MA from Columbia University in higher education administration.

Irene Khan (Bangladesh)
Vice-Chair
Director General, International Development Law Organization

Before becoming Director General of the International Development Law Organization, Irene Khan was secretary general of Amnesty International from 2001 to 2009. Previously, she joined the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in 1980, working in a variety of positions, including senior executive officer to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, head of the UNHCR team in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia during the Kosovo crisis in 1999; she was appointed deputy director of International Protection in the same year. Khan studied law at the University of Manchester and Harvard Law School, specializing in public international law and human rights. She has received several awards and academic honours, including the City of Sydney Peace Prize in 2006. She is author of the 2009 book, "The Unheard Truth: Poverty and Human Rights."

Miloon Kothari (India)
Independent Expert on Human Rights and Social Policy
Senior Advisor, MIT Displacement Research Action Network (DRAN)

Based in New Delhi, India, Miloon Kothari is an independent expert on human rights and social policy. He served as the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing from 2000 to 2008, and Founder and Executive Director of the Housing and Land Rights Network (HLRN), India from 1999 to 2013. He was also co-founder and convenor of the Working Group on Human Rights in India and the UN (WGHR) from 2009 to 2014. He is the President of UPR Info, the Geneva-based organization which provides capacity-building for more effective use of the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR). Mr Kothari was appointed Dr Martin Luther King Visiting Scholar at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2013. From 2013 to 2015, he guided the development of the MIT Displacement Research and Action Network (DRAN), and taught graduate courses at the MIT’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning.

Karin Lissakers (United States)
Director,  Revenue Watch Institute

Karin Lissakers was founding president of the Revenue Watch Institute, a nonprofit organization that promotes the transparent, accountable and effective management of oil, gas and mining revenues to help countries realize the full economic benefit of their natural resource wealth.  She served as US executive director on the board of the International Monetary Fund from 1993 to 2001 and as deputy director of the Policy Planning Staff of the US State Department. She was also staff director of the economic policy subcommittee of the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. She has also held senior posts in academia and several think tanks, as well as advising George Soros on issues of globalization. She is a former senior associate of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and headed the International Business and Banking Program at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs. Her research and writing have focused on the interplay of international business and US foreign policy. She is the author of 'Banks, Borrowers and the Establishment 'about the 1980s international debt crisis. Her articles have appeared in Foreign Policy, the Journal of International Affairs, The New York Times, the Washington Post and other publications. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Elizabeth McCormack (United States)
Secretary
Adviser, Rockefeller Family & Associates

Elizabeth J. McCormack is a board member of the Juilliard School, Hamilton College, the Asian Culture Council and the Atlantic Philanthropies. She received a BA degree from Manhattanville College and a PhD from Fordham University. From 1966 to 1974 she was president of Manhattanville College. At the present time she is an adviser to members of the Rockefeller family.

Sharmila Mhatre (Canada)
Deputy Director, Public Health Program, Open Society Foundations

Sharmila Mhatre is Deputy Director of the Public Health Program at Open Society Foundations. Formerly, she was Program Leader of Governance for Equity in Health Systems at the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) in Canada. Working with leading scholars and policy makers from low and middle income countries and in Canada, the program strives to redress health inequities and improve health outcomes. Mhatre has extensive expertise in health systems and policy research, with a focus on community-based epidemiology, health information systems, maternal and child health, and the prevention of sexual violence and HIV/AIDS in a range of countries in Africa and South Asia. She has a PhD (1994) in health services research from the University of Toronto.

Carin Norberg (Sweden)
Chair
Former Director, Nordic Africa Institute

Carin Norberg is former director of the Nordic Africa Institute in Uppsala, Sweden. From 2002-2005, she was executive director and program manager for global programs at the secretariat of Transparency International, in Berlin. Since 1970, she has held various positions with the Swedish International Development Agency, including director, department for East and West Africa, director, department for humanitarian assistance and co-operation with NGOs, and director, department for democracy and social development. From 1984-87, she was advisor to the UN Commissioner for Namibia at the United Nations headquarters in New York. She holds a degree in political science and economics from Uppsala University. She is presently board member of Civil Rights Defenders, Stiftelsen Folkoperan and Nordic Africa Research Network and member of the AEGIS Advisory Council.

Imad Sabi (Palestine)
Founding Board Member, Arab Campaign for Education for All

Imad Sabi worked for ten years at Oxfam Novib's Global Programmes Department in the Netherlands, supporting an extensive network of global civil society actors.  He previously served as Senior Program Officer for Emergencies in Africa and the Middle East for the Dutch development agency ICCO and has also worked in Central Asia as a consultant.  He has been active over many years in the right to education movement, serving on the Board of the Global Campaign for Education, and is a Founding Board member of the Arab Campaign for Education for All.  He currently represents civil society in the Country Grants and Performance Committee of the Global Partnership for Education.  Previously he was a member of the International Council of the World Social Forum and has also been a member of the Board of Engaged Donors for Global Equity (EDGE).

Magdalena Sepúlveda Carmona (Chile)
Senior Research Fellow at the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development

Magdalena Sepúlveda Carmona is a Senior Research Fellow at the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD). Ms. Sepúlveda was the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights from May 2008 to June 2014. She has worked as a researcher at the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights, as a staff attorney at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, and as the Co-Director of the Department of International Law and Human Rights of the United Nations-mandated University for Peace in San José, Costa Rica. She also served as a consultant to UNHCR and to the Norwegian Refugee Council. More recently she was Research Director at the International Council on Human Rights Policy in Geneva and Research Fellow at the Norwegian Center for Human Rights. Ms Sepúlveda has worked with a range of NGOs in formal and informal capacities. She has taught various post graduate courses at universities in Latin America and is currently Associate Professor at Oxford University’s Summer Course on Human Rights and has published widely on human rights, poverty and development.

She currently serves as member of the Steering Committee of the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE) of the Committee of World Food Security and as a Member of the Human Rights and Gender Group, formed under the auspices of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Ms. Sepúlveda is a Chilean lawyer, J.S.D. (University of Valparaiso, Law School); LL.M. (University of Essex) and Ph.D (Utrecht University).


Advisory Council

Geoff Budlender (South Africa)
Constitutional and Human Rights Lawyer

Geoff Budlender SC is an advocate (barrister) practicing in Cape Town, South Africa. He works mainly in the areas of constitutional law, human rights, administrative law, and other aspects of public law. In 1979 he was one of the founders of the Legal Resources Centre, South Africa's leading public interest law centre. From 1996-99 he served as Director-General of the Department of Land Affairs in the Mandela administration. He has litigated cases dealing with the death penalty, evictions, HIV/AIDS, housing rights, land rights, access to justice and the rights of women under customary law. He is an acting judge of the High Court of South Africa in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

Sakiko Fukuda-Parr (Japan)
Professor of International Affairs at the New School, New York

Prior to being a professor at the New School, Sakiko Fukuda-Parr was a research fellow at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. From 1995 to 2004, she was director of UNDP's Human Development Reports. She has written and spoken widely on human rights as an essential aspect of development. She is founding editor of the Journal of Human Development. Prior to that, she held a number of positions in UNDP and the World Bank wtih management and technical responsibilities. She has a BA from the University of Cambridge and MAs from the University of Sussex and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. She speaks Japanese, English and French.

Richard Goldstone (South Africa)
Honorary President, Human Rights Institute of the International Bar Association

Richard J. Goldstone was former justice of the Constitutional Court of South Africa (1994-2003) and former first chief prosecutor of the UN International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda (1994-1996). He is a member of the committee, chaired by Paul A. Volcker, appointed by the Secretary-General of the United Nations to investigate allegations regarding the Iraq Oil for Food Program. In addition to being on the board of CESR, Judge Goldstone is on the boards of Human Rights Watch, Physicians for Human Rights and the Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation. He was chosen to receive the 2009 MacArthur Award for International Justice.

Chris Jochnick (United States)
Chief Executive Officer, Landesa

Chris Jochnick is Chief Executive Officer at Landesa and is a lecturer in business and human rights at Harvard Law School. Formerly, he was director of private sector engagement for the international NGO Oxfam America. He has worked for many years in the field of human rights and is co-founder and a director of the Ecuador-based Centro de Derechos Economicos y Sociales (CDES) and the co-founder of the Center for Economic and Social Rights. He also spent five years in the private sector as an attorney for the Wall Street law firm of Paul, Weiss Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. He was the editor in chief of the Harvard Human Rights Journal and a MacArthur Foundation research and writing fellow. He has authored many publications on human rights and development.

Alicia Ely Yamin (United States)
Lecturer on Global Health, and Policy Director, François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights, Harvard University.

Alicia Ely Yamin, JD MPH, is Policy Director of the François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University. She is also Lecturer on Global Health at the Harvard School of Public Health and associated senior researcher at the Christian Michelsen Institute in Bergen, Norway. From 2007 to 2011, Yamin was Joseph H. Flom Fellow on Global Health and Human Rights at Harvard Law School. Previously, Yamin was director of research and investigations at Physicians for Human Rights. Yamin has conducted human rights documentation and advocacy with both international and local Latin American organizations for 20 years. She serves on the advisory boards of the International Initiative on Maternal Mortality and Human Rights and the Center for Policy Analysis on Trade and Health, among others. Yamin is also on the editorial review boards of Human Rights Quarterly, Human Rights and the Global Economy, and the Revista Iberoamericana de Derechos Humanos.


Philip Alston (Australia)
Honorary board member

Professor of Law, New York University School of Law

Philip Alston is the UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights and previously served as the chair of the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1991-1998). He currently teaches at the New York University Law School. Alston has published extensively on economic, social and cultural rights. He has a LL.B (Hons.), B.Comm. and LL.M. from the University of Melbourne and an LL.M. and JSD from the University of California, Berkeley.