High Level Speakers at the UNEA Gender and Enviroment Forum

High level Speakers at the UNEA Gender Forum 1

H.E. Mrs. Rael Ruto, Chairperson of Joyful Women’s Organization-Kenya

Her Excellency, Mrs. Rael Ruto is the spouse of the current Deputy President of Kenya His Excellency Hon. William Ruto. She is the Founder and Patron of Joyful Women Organization that works to advance economic empowerment of women in Kenya, especially the rural poor through table banking, capacity building and mentorship of women groups in pursuit of Kenya’s Vision 2030 among other supportive poverty eradication strategies. ...more

Ambassador Ms. Sahle-Work Zewde, Director General of UNON

Ms. Zewde is the first person to be solely appointed to the newly created position as head of the United Nations Office at Nairobi, at the Under-Secretary-General level. Prior to her new appointment, Ms. Zewde served as the Special Representative of the Secretary General and Head of the United Nations Integrated Peace building Office in the Central African Republic (BINUCA). ...more

Ms Laskhmi Puri, Deputy Executive Director UN Women

Ms. Lakshmi Puri is Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations and Deputy Executive Director of UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women. She is directly responsible for the leadership and management of the Bureau for Intergovernmental Support, United Nations Coordination, and Strategic Partnerships. ...more

Ms. Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, Deputy Executive Director and Assistant Secretary-General, UN-Habitat

Dr. Aisa Kirabo Kacyira of the Republic of Rwanda is the Deputy Executive Director and Assistant Secretary-General for UN-HABITAT. In this role, she has been providing critical leadership to promote sustainable cities and human settlements globally engaging widely with governmental and non-governmental actors. ...more

Ms. Nardos Bekele-Thomas, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, Kenya

Ms. Nardos Bekele-Thomas has been appointed the Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Resident Coordinator of the United Nations system in Kenya. ...more

H.E. Professor Judi Wangalwa Wakhungu, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Water and Natural Resources (Kenya)

Prof. Judi Wakhungu is the Cabinet Secretary to the Ministry of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, Kenya. Prior to joining the Kenya cabinet in 2013, Prof Judi Wakhungu was the Executive Director of the African Center for Technology Studies (ACTS) in Nairobi, Kenya. ...more

Ms. Julia Marton-Lefevre, Director General, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

Julia Marton-Lefèvre is Director General of IUCN, the world’s largest conservation/environment membership organization, which brings together states, government agencies, non-governmental organizations, scientists and experts in a unique worldwide partnership. Prior to this, Julia was Rector of the University for Peace (UPEACE), a graduate-level international university, mandated by the United Nations, providing education, training and research on issues related to peace and conflict. Earlier offices held by Julia include Executive Director of LEAD (Leadership for Environment and Development) International, a programme established by The Rockefeller Foundation to ...more

H.E. Ms. Lisel Alamilla- Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development, Belize

Minister Lisel Alamilla, born in Belize City and raised in Belize City and Benque Viejo del Carmen, is a graduate of the University of Idaho, College of Natural Resources. She has eighteen years experience working in development and conservation initiatives in Belize. Prior to her appointment, she was the Executive Director of Ya'axche Conservation Trust (2008 - 2012), a leading NGO working in southern Belize to address the country’s immense conservation challenges, which include unsustainable hunting and habitat destruction for agricultural expansion and the timber trade. ...more

Ms. Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi – Special Envoy on Gender, African Development Bank

Geraldine Joslyn Fraser-Moleketi is the Special Gender Envoy at the African Development Bank. She has previously held the position of Director of the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Democratic Governance Group, overseeing the organization’s related strategic and policy work in 197 countries and territories around the globe. ...more


High level Speakers at the UNEA Gender Forum 2

H.E. Dr. Dionysia Theodora Avgerinopolou, Member of the Hellenic Parliament and Director –European Institute of Law, Science and Technology (Greece)

Dionysia-Theodora Avgerinopoulou is a Member of the Parliament of Greece where she is President of the Environment Committee and the Watercourses Sub-Committee. Avgerinopoulou is a trained attorney, specializing in environmental, international and European law. She has worked at the Legal Service of the European Commission, the Permanent Mission of the European Union to the United Nations, and the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy at Yale Law School. ...more

Dr. Alice Kaudia, Environment Secretary, State Department of Environment and Natural Resources, KENYA

Dr. Alice Kaudia is the current Environment Secretary in the Republic of Kenya and works for the Ministry of Environment and Mineral Resources. She has extensive experience in the field of community-driven natural resources management and conservation spanning close to three decades. ...more

Ms. Jacqueline McGlade, Chief Scientist and ad interim Director, Division for Early Warning Assessment, UNEP

Jacqueline McGlade is currently Chief Scientist and ad interim Director of UNEP’s Division of Early Warning and Assessment. Prior to joining UNEP as Special Advisor to the Executive Director on knowledge management and science, Professor Jacqueline McGlade was Executive Director of the European Environment Agency from 2003-2013.


Ms Maryam Niamir Fuller, Special Advisor to the Executive Director of UNEP on Post 2015 and Sustainable Development Goals

Ms. Maryam Niamir-Fuller is currently serving as the Special Advisor to the Executive Director of UNEP on Post 2015 and Sustainable Development Goals. She was formerly the Director of the Division of Global Environment Facility Coordination (DGEF) of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). ...more

Ms. Elizabeth Mrema, UNEP Director, Division of Environmental Law and Conventions (DELC)

Elizabeth Maruma Mrema has worked with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) for almost two decades. Until January 2013 since July 2009, she was the Executive Secretary of the UNEP/Secretariat of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), Acting Executive Secretary of the UNEP/ASCOBANS and Interim Executive Secretary of the UNEP/Gorilla Agreement all based in Bonn, Germany. ...more

Mrs. Haddijatou Jallow, Executive Chair Person, Environment Protection Agency - SIERRA LEONE

Haddijatou Jallow is the executive chairperson of Sierra Leone’s Environment Protection Agency. She graduated in 1997 with an LLM in Environmental Law from George Washington University. In 1992, she received a master’s degree in International Law and Diplomacy from the University of Lagos in Nigeria, and, in 1982, received a BA in sociology from Fourah Bay College at the University of Sierra Leone. ...more

HE Mrs. Oyun Sanjaasuren, Minister, Ministry of Environment and Green Development, MONGOLIA

Oyun Sanjaasuren was appointed as the Minister of Environment and Green Development of Mongolia in August 2012, and has been a Member of Parliament since 1998. She served as Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia from 2007-2008. As the Founder of the Civil Will Party, a third force liberal party, Ms. Oyun is the only female party leader in Mongolia and ranks top ten among the most popular politicians. ...more

HE Ms. Amy Adams, Minister – New Zealand

Hon. Amy Adams is New Zealand’s Minister for the Environment, Minister for Communications and Information Technology, and Associate Minister for Canterbury Earthquake Recovery.

She became a Member of Parliament at the 2008 General Election, representing the large rural electorate of Selwyn in the Canterbury province.  She was re-elected to Parliament in 2011 with a majority of votes and was promoted to Cabinet. ...more

Mr. Nik Sekhran Head, Environment and Energy Group, BDP/UNDP

Nik Sekhran joined UNDP in 1997 and is currently the Officer in Charge - Environment and Energy Group, Bureau for Development Policy. He has also held the position of Head of the UNDP Biodiversity Programme and Principal Technical Adviser of the UNDP-GEF Ecosystems and Biodiversity Programme in the Environment and Energy Group of UNDP’s Bureau for Development Policy. ...more

Dr Janet Kabeberi-Macharia , Head of Gender and Social Safeguards Unit - UNEP

Dr. Janet Kabeberi Macharia  is the UNEP Head of the Gender and Social Safeguards Unit and is the Senior Gender Adviser. At UNEP, she has focused on systematic integration of gender in UNEP’s operational work, alongside efforts to strengthen institutional recognition of operational responsibilities and greater accountability for gender work by management and staff. ...more


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