ICRW Board Member, Respected Humanitarian Passes Away

Article Date

07 April 2014

Media Contact

Anne McPherson

Vice President, Global Communications email [email protected]

Peter D. Bell, ICRW Board member and former CEO of CARE USA, passed away on April 4th at Massachusetts General Hospital, of complications due to cancer.                                                     

“I served at CARE before joining ICRW in 2002, and as a staff member based in CARE’s field offices in Africa had the opportunity to work under Peter’s extraordinary leadership.  As someone tasked with operationalizing CARE’s core values, I appreciated how Peter was able to articulate a compelling yet actionable vision of a just and equitable world.  When I was appointed President of ICRW in 2010, my fervent hope was that Peter would accept our invitation to join the Board,” said Sarah Degnan Kambou.

Peter joined ICRW’s Board of Directors in May 2010, and as chair of the governance task force, he led Board members in engaging dialogue on non-profit governance.  An artful communicator, Peter often shared lessons learned from his vast non-profit experience to make a point. Most significantly, he encouraged ICRW’s research staff to surpass known boundaries and to find new pathways to create a gender equitable world.  “ICRW and the women and girls we serve have lost a wise advocate, and we have all lost a friend,” said Dr. Elizabeth Griffith, Chair of the ICRW Board.

At the time of his death, Peter was a senior research fellow at Harvard University’s Hauser Institute for Civil Society. He co-chaired the Joint Learning Initiative on Children and HIV/AIDS, and was in the initial stages of launching a Global Learning Initiative to Stop Violence against Boys and Girls.

“Peter saw the value of having ICRW, as an applied research institute, involved in the new Global Learning Initiative. He was deeply committed to social justice, and wanted to create a world where children lived free from violence. Truly, an inspiring human being,” said Stella Mukasa, Director of Gender, Violence and Rights at ICRW.

In a message of condolence from ICRW staff members to the Bell family, Ann Warner, Senior Gender and Youth Specialist, writes:  “Peter expected and inspired excellence; he emanated integrity; and he never failed to be kind, thoughtful and generous. He was a true humanitarian in profession and in spirit.”

We cherish Peter’s memory, and are deeply thankful for his service to ICRW.