Mary Robinson was President of Ireland and the former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
She has spent most of her life as a human rights advocate and is a world leader who puts her humanity very much at the forefront of her politics. She now chairs the Council of Women World Leaders and is President of Realising Rights: The Ethical Globalization Initiative. She has been named a “Hero and Icon” as one of Time magazine’s 2005 top 100 men and women whose “power, talent or moral example is transforming the world. In 2006, she received Spain’s prestigious Prince of Asturias Award in Social Sciences prize for her work as a global human rights campaigner, singled out for her “moral strength, her defense of “ethics in the field of politics and academic research,” and her “tireless efforts to bring about a world without borders.”
Broadening her international scope, Mary Robinson expands her leadership into other areas including business enterprise, corporate citizenship, and the broad reform of some of the world’s most prestigious organizations. She serves as Vice President of Club of Madrid, working to promote democracy worldwide. In business, she is one of five prestigious board members of the Mastercard Foundation, a newly established independent foundation focusing on microfinance, youth entrepreneurship and education.
She was recently appointed to the UN Global Compact Board, a group of 20 global business and social leaders working to advance ten universal business principles in the areas of human rights, the environment and anti-corruption for this large voluntary corporate citizenship initiative.
Mary Robinson recently became a member of The Elders, a group of world leaders who contribute their wisdom, independent leadership, and integrity to tackling some of the world’s toughest problems with the goal of making the world a better place. This group of luminaries was founded by Nelson Mandela, Graca Machel, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
The recipient of numerous honours and awards throughout the world, Mary Robinson is a member of the Royal Irish Academy and the American Philosophical Society and is Honorary President of Oxfam International. She also serves on many boards including the Vaccine Fund, the Global Commission on Migration, the Business Leaders Initiative on Human Rights, and the International Commission of Jurists.
"Feel empowered. And if you start to do it, if you start to feel your voice heard, you will never go back." Mary Robinson
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