The Executive Board guides the strategic development of the organisation. Board members serve as a fiduciary of the organisation’s assets. The Board is composed of experts in different fields of human rights.
Miloon Kothari (India) – President
Miloon Kothari is an Independent Expert on Human Rights and Social Policy based in New Delhi, India. He was (from 2000-2008) the First Special Rapporteur on adequate housing with the United Nations Commission on Human Rights and the Human Rights Council. During his tenure as Special Rapporteur, he led the process that resulted in the UN Basic Principles and Guidelines on Development based Evictions and Displacement – the current global operational human rights standard on the practice of forced evictions.
An architect by training, Mr. Kothari is the founder and former coordinator of Habitat International’s Housing and Land Rights Network (HLRN) and founder and former executive-director (1999-2013) of the Housing and Land Rights Network in India. Since 2009, Mr. Kothari has contributed significantly, as founding member and convener (2009-2013) to the Working Group on Human Rights in India and the UN (WGHR), a national alliance that is particularly active on the UPR.
Mr. Kothari has published widely and has lectured and taught at leading academic institutions around the world. In 2013, he was appointed Dr. Martin Luther King Visiting Scholar at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and continued as Distinguished Visiting Scholar with (MIT) Program on Human Rights and Justice (2014-2015). In 2017, Mr. Kothari was bestowed with the degree Doctor of Laws (LL.D.), honoris causa, by the Simon Fraser University, Canada.
Chris Duckett (United States) – Treasurer
Chris Duckett is a Bern, Switzerland-based donor development and fundraising professional with 21 years of successive experience driving NGO growth and sustainability in the field of human rights.
Chris has consulted independently for 22 international, regional and national-level human rights and rule of law human rights NGOs and funders based across four continents. He is a Board Director of Restitution, the world’s first litigation impact fund focused on recovering the assets of Global South countries lost to grand corruption.
Chris holds a BA cum laude from the University of California, Los Angeles and a Masters from Lund University, Sweden. He has also studied at the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Amsterdam and the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.
Prof. Edward R. McMahon (United States) – Board Member
Edward McMahon currently holds a joint appointment as Adjunct Associate Professor in the Departments of Community Development and Applied Economics, and Political Science, at the University of Vermont. He has collaborated with UPR Info since 2009, and has taken the lead in developing the action category component of UPR Info’s innovative database. He has made several presentations for a variety of audiences in Europe and the United States, and has a related article in the African Yearbook of International law.
McMahon was Dean’s Professor of Applied Politics and Director of the Center on Democratic Performance at Binghamton University from 1999 to 2003. He also held the position of Africa Regional Director for the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs from 1989-1998 and served for 10 years as a U.S. diplomat.
Hoa Nghiem (Vietnam) – Board Member
Ms. Hoa Nghiem is a researcher and educator on human rights-based development. She works as an independent consultant and contributor with development agencies and Vietnamese civil society groups. Her area of work includes human rights advocacy, engaging with UN human rights mechanisms, community building, research and human rights education. She is particularly interested in the pedagogy of human rights education and building a culture of human rights.
Catherine Mbengue (Cameroon) – Board Member
Catherine Mbengue is an accomplished human rights professional with over 35 years’ experience in international development cooperation. She has worked for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and ECPAT international (EI), and has occupied leadership positions in development, humanitarian, and transition contexts in Africa, America, Europe and South Asia.
In these positions, she oversaw evidence gathering and data generation initiatives including assessments, situations analysis and research at country, regional and global levels for evidence-based advocacy and development of policies, strategies and programmes grounded on a human rights- and gender-based approach .
She has also led diverse technical teams to provide assistance to host governments and organisations for the design and implementation of cooperation programmes, and to leverage resources to protect and fulfil children’s and women’s rights.
A passionate of social development, Ms. Mbengue offers advisory and technical assistance services to governments, bilateral and multilateral agencies, private sector and non-profit organisations in strategic planning and programming for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).