ICRW Welcomes Six New Members to Its Board of Directors

Article Date

15 September 2014

Article Author

Jenna Bushnell

Media Contact

Anne McPherson

Vice President, Global Communications email [email protected]

The International Center for Research on Women is pleased to welcome to its Board of Directors six new members, all of whom offer a wide variety of experience and insight to this organization from their respective fields.

New board members Winnie Byanyima, Kristin Eager Killion, Søren Elbech, Jennifer Klein, Patience Marime-Ball and Haven Ley will provide tactical guidance to ICRW from their respective backgrounds, which include strategic communications, finance, international development, women’s rights and public policy. These new members will join the existing board in helping ICRW carry out its vital work advancing gender equality and fighting poverty in the developing world, as well as offer their visions for how the organization can continue to progress as the world’s premier applied research institute focused on women and girls.

“ICRW is incredibly fortunate to have a full Board of Directors that have demonstrated their investment in being champions for not only women and girls, but also our organization’s research-driven mission,” ICRW President Sarah Degnan Kambou said. “I have no doubt that our newest members will be valued resources, helping ICRW remain a key figure in the women’s rights and global development community.”

Ms. Byanyima is a proven champion for women’s rights and is a recognized expert in gender policy, having founded the civil society organization, Forum for Women in Democracy (FOWODE), as well as having served 10 years as a member of the Ugandan parliament. Ms. Byanyima currently serves as the Executive Director of Oxfam International and previously served the UN in a variety of capacities including chairing UN-wide task forces on gender aspects of the Millennium Development Goals and climate change. No stranger to ICRW’s mission, Ms. Byanyima was previously a member of the Board of Directors from 2001-2011.

Ms. Killion brings to ICRW a deft eye for the tactical and deliberate messaging needed for development organizations. She engaged in extensive public diplomacy, initiating and maintaining communication with principal UNESCO, corporate and NGO contacts, during her husband’s tenure as the US Ambassador to the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Fluent in French, Ms. Killion lived and worked in Paris for eight years and is well-versed in French, European and International cultures and communities. She has experience working with international organizations, governments, Fortune 500 companies, non-profits and celebrities.

Mr. Elbech offers ICRW a unique perspective on financial solutions, as he currently serves as Senior Vice President of Global Deal Origination at Vestas, the only global energy company dedicated exclusively to wind energy. Although Vestas is headquartered in Denmark, Søren is based in Washington, DC. In this position, he offers insight to wind farm developers and buyers of Vestas’ wind turbines, including structuring debt & equity solutions, partnering with a broad scope of financial investors and capital markets participants as well as utilizing available instruments to raise financing from public and private sector banks, funds, and guarantors. Prior to this role, Søren was the Treasurer at the Inter-American Development Bank.  Before joining the Board, Søren served as an external advisor to ICRW’s Investment Committee.

An expert in women’s issues and public policy, Ms. Klein has a wealth of experience, having worked for the Secretary of State and the White House. She currently serves as an advisor to Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on women and girls issues and from 2009 to 2012, Ms. Klein was a Deputy and Senior Advisor in the Office of Global Women’s Issues in the Office of the Secretary of State at the U.S. Department of State. For 10 years prior to joining the State Department, she worked as a consultant to foundations and non-profit organizations, helping these organizations to define their priorities, develop strategic plans and policy initiatives and manage resources. Ms. Klein graduated from Brown University and Columbia Law School, after spending her third year as a visiting student at Yale Law School.

With her appointment to the board, Ms. Marime-Ball brings with her years of experience working across different sectors including project finance in infrastructure, distressed assets restructuring and financial markets. She has served as a Principal Investment Officer in the International Finance Corporation’s (IFC) Financial Institutions Group since 2010 and currently leads the Banking on Women program which seeks to scale-up IFC’s investments in women-owned businesses in emerging markets. She has both a Juris Doctor and Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University.

Ms. Ley brings ICRW varied experience in gender and economic development. She currently serves as Senior Advisor to the Co-Chair at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for women and girls, among other issue areas. She also provides Foundation-wide counsel on gender and women’s empowerment across sectors. She previously served as the Foundation’s Senior Program Officer for the Agriculture Department, leading a team that ensures that environmental, social and nutrition benefits of agricultural production are optimized and that risks to natural resources and household welfare are minimized. Prior to joining the foundation, Ms. Ley worked as a Senior Program Officer with the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) and helped to develop and lead implementation of the MCC Gender and Environmental Policies. Haven earned her MSc with Distinction in Gender and Economic Development at the London School of Economics & Political Science.

ICRW warmly welcomes these new board members to our family.