I am Suzanne Nossel, the new executive director of Amnesty International USA.
It is a privilege to take the reins of Amnesty, especially now, at this pivotal moment. We have the opportunity to make solid human rights gains. To succeed, I will rely on the dedication and talents of all Amnesty supporters.
This is where you come in. In collaboration with our Board of Directors and other member leaders, I am leading a listening tour to gather feedback from every corner of the Amnesty movement. We will use your input to develop a strategic plan for the organization.
I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please take a short online survey to help guide our strategy.
I look forward to working with Amnesty because I have cared about human rights from a very young age. My mother’s family fled from Nazi Germany to South Africa. As a child, I saw apartheid first hand. Bathrooms, beaches and buses were segregated, and I knew something was wrong.
In high school in New York City I worked with an organization to help free Soviet Jews. We wrote letters, wore bracelets with the names of individual dissidents on them, raised money, marched down 5th Avenue and demonstrated in front of the United Nations.
My position at Amnesty will draw upon every one of my professional experiences. As Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations, I learned how decisions get made within Washington and how to push through important human rights initiatives.
As Chief Operating Officer of Human Rights Watch I gained a deeper understanding of human rights around the world and the role of expertise in human rights advocacy.
I know I have big shoes to fill. I owe a deep debt of gratitude to my predecessor, Larry Cox, and the tremendous hard work and accomplishments of Amnesty USA members in recent years:
Abolition of the death penalty in New Jersey (2007), New Mexico (2009) and Illinois (2011).
Enactment of the Tribal Law and Order Act (2010) to streamline access to justice for crimes of sexual violence against Native American and Alaska Native women.
Freedom for thousands of political prisoners persecuted for their beliefs.
As Amnesty supporters, you and I share a powerful belief that dedicated individuals acting together can defend human dignity and restore human rights — and society can flourish.
I’m excited about the opportunity to work with you, and I do hope that you can take the time to share your ideas with me in this short survey.
Amnesty International USA
P.S. Hurry — the survey will close on Friday, March 23.