Who and where we are

Our website is in eight languages: English, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.  Our regional researchers are based in Australia, Brazil, China, Colombia, India, Kenya, Jordan, Mexico, Myanmar, Philippines, Senegal, South Africa, Tunisia, UK, Ukraine, and the USA.  They draw global attention to the human rights impacts (positive and negative) of companies in their region, seek responses from companies when civil society raises concerns, and establish close contacts with grassroots NGOs, local businesspeople, and others.  We have offices in London and New York.

The Resource Centre is an independent non-profit: in the UK we are a registered Charity in England & Wales (no. 1096664). In the USA we are a tax-exempt non-profit organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Board

Our Board is the guardian of the Resource Centre’s identity and plays a full role in strategy and the accountability of the management team. The Board is diverse and composed of activists, academics, ex-business people, and specialists.  For a full list of board members, see here.

Global Team

Management team

Phil Bloomer, Executive Director (based in London)
bloomer [at] business-humanrights.org   @pbloomer

Phil became Executive Director of Business & Human Rights Resource Centre in September 2013.  Based at the Centre’s London headquarters, Phil is responsible for leading the global organization, delivering the mission and strategic priorities, and ensuring effective management of programme, personnel, finance, and administration.

Prior to joining the Resource Centre Phil was Director of Campaigns and Policy at Oxfam GB, where he was responsible for a team of 170 staff working across policy, advocacy, programme and campaigns.  His team’s priorities were food justice, humanitarian protection and assistance in conflict zones, and the provision of essential health and education for all.  Previously he was head of Oxfam International’s Make Trade Fair, and Access to Medicines campaigns. 

Prior to joining Oxfam, Phil spent 11 years in Latin America and worked on human rights dimensions of business, including in food security, resource extraction; mega-projects; and business relations with public and private security in repressive environments.

Marti Flacks, Deputy Director & Head of North America Office (based in Washington, DC)
flacks [at] business-humanrights.org

Marti joined the Resource Centre in May 2017. As part of the senior management team, she is involved in strategic & financial decisions at the organization. She also oversees the Centre’s work on the Middle East, Africa, and Responsible Resource Use. Marti previously served as Director for African Affairs on the U.S. National Security Council staff at the White House, where she coordinated and advised senior officials on foreign policy priorities in East and Southern Africa and Africa-wide economic and security issues. Prior to that she served as Deputy Director in the Office of Energy Programs in the Bureau of Energy Resources at the U.S. Department of State, leading Department policy on extractives sector transparency policy issues, and as North/South Team Leader for the U.S. Special Envoy to Sudan, focused on implementation of Sudan’s Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Marti also worked at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on asylum issues and at the U.S Commission on International Religious Freedom. Outside the U.S. government, Marti has worked or volunteered for Human Rights Watch, the Carter Center, the Earth Institute at Columbia University, the South African Human Rights Commission, and the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs.

Marti has a law degree from Columbia Law School and a Masters Degree from the Fletcher School at Tufts University, focused on international law and conflict resolution. She has a B.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University. She is fluent in English and has basic proficiency in Spanish. Marti is a national of the United States.

Mauricio Lazala, Deputy Director & Head of Europe Office (based in Frankfurt)
lazala [at] business-humanrights.org

Mauricio joined the Resource Centre in 2006.  Until his appointment as Deputy Director in Feb. 2011 he served as Senior Researcher and Head of Latin America & Middle East.  As part of the senior management team, he is involved in strategic, operational and financial decisions at the organization. He oversees Latin America and Europe researchers, as well as the London office. Mauricio also manages one of the top three strategic work streams of the organization, the "Business, Civic Freedoms and Human Rights Defenders" project. Mauricio led the 2014 redevelopment of the Resource Centre's website.

Since 2014, Mauricio is a member of the Board of the EIRIS Foundation – Empowering Responsible Investment. In 2018 he was invited to join the Advisory Committee of the Investor Alliance for Human Rights, and since 2017 he also sits on the Advisory Panel of the Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP) of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights.

Previously, he served as law clerk at International Criminal Court, Programme Manager at Mexican Commission for the Protection & Defence of Human Rights, and Outreach Coordinator at B'Tselem (Israeli Information Centre for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories).  Mauricio has published various articles on business & human rights.  Mauricio has a Law degree (honours) from the University of Cambridge, and a BA in Political Sciences and History from Hebrew University of Jerusalem.  He is fluent in Spanish, English & Hebrew, and has basic German.

Bobbie-profile-pic

Bobbie Sta. Maria, Director for Labour Rights and Asia (based in Washington, DC)
stamaria [at] business-humanrights.org   @bobbiestamaria

Bobbie joined the Resource Centre in 2013 as Southeast Asia Researcher and Representative, and currently leads its work in Asia while overseeing special projects on labour rights and corporate legal accountability.

She was previously based in Thailand and Myanmar, working closely with NGOs and community-based groups on corporate accountability and transparency. She has worked alongside labour unions and organizations in Cambodia, Myanmar, and the Philippines to bring concerns around wages and freedom of association to international brands, and has seen direct positive impacts on workers' rights as a result of these engagements. She has assisted in numerous efforts to document business-linked abuses, helped bring together human rights advocates in the region for more effective collaboration, and raised local issues to international communities of decision-makers and opinion leaders.

She previously served as Southeast Asia Legal Coordinator at EarthRights International, and prior to that, as Staff Lawyer at Sentro ng Alternatibong Lingap Panligal (SALIGAN) or Alternative Legal Assistance Center in the Philippines. In both roles, she was involved in litigation, local and international policy advocacy, research, and training. Bobbie obtained her law degree from the University of the Philippines, and her Master of Human Rights from the University of Sydney. Bobbie is a national of Philippines.

Patricia Surak, Senior Development Director (based in New York)
surak [at] business-humanrights.org

Patty joined the Resource Centre in 2009 as the organization’s first Development Director.  She has helped to diversify the Centre’s funding sources, increase the number of donors worldwide, and build the US board.  Patty works closely with the Development Director - UK/Europe to manage current funding relationships and to seek financial support to enable the Resource Centre to expand its work.  Prior to managing her own fundraising consulting business for several years, Patty was the Director of Development at a local senior care facility in New Rochelle, NY, where she oversaw a capital campaign which raised over $6 million to build a nursing and rehabilitation center. 

From 2001-2005, Patty was the Director of Foundation and Corporate Relations at Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), where she and her team managed relationships with over 600 foundation and corporate supporters and grew the revenue from this sector six-fold.  Patty was previously the director of Corporate and Foundation Relations for Catholic Relief Services in their world headquarters in Baltimore, MD.  While at CRS she traveled to projects in Guatemala, Turkey, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Bosnia, in most locations providing technical assistance and fundraising training to CRS field staff to help with capacity building of local independent NGOs.  Patty’s academic and research projects included work on the commercial sexual exploitation of children in the U.S., Canada, & Mexico and on the effects of welfare reform on poor and low-income Pennsylvania residents.  Patty earned her Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) at the University of Pennsylvania, where she was awarded the Ruth Smalley Award for Outstanding Achievements in International Social Welfare, and her B.A. in Political Science from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Patty is a national of U.S.

Africa

Sanyu Awori, Project Lead for Workers’ Empowerment (based in Nairobi)
awori [at] business-humanrights.org   @Sanyu_Awori

Sanyu Awori joined the Resource Centre in February 2019 as Project Lead on Workers’ Empowerment where she will manage efforts to transform the global apparel industry through amplifying workers voices and supporting the collective power of worker-led initiatives.

Prior to this, Sanyu worked for the International Women’s Rights Action Watch (IWRAW) Asia Pacific an organization rooted in the Global South that contributes to the progressive interpretation and implementation of women's human rights. Here she led their work on business and women’s human using an intersectional human rights lens to demonstrate the gender-specific impact of corporate abuses and worked to strengthen understanding on gender-sensitive approaches to business and human rights so women’s experiences are not rendered invisible.

Sanyu has worked for the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative based in Delhi, where she specialized in human rights advocacy in Commonwealth countries. Sanyu has also researched for the Human Rights Law Centre in Nottingham and done community work with asylum seekers and refugees in the UK. She has a Master of Laws in Human Rights Law (LLM with Distinction) and a Bachelor of Laws (LLB with Honours) from the University of Nottingham.

She is a feminist human rights advocate and regularly writes and speaks on the intersections of gender, business and human rights.

Aliou Diouf, Francophone Africa Researcher & Representative (based in Dakar)
diouf [at] business-humanrights.org           @aldioufy 

Aliou Diouf joined the Resource Centre in 2009.  He is responsible for research and outreach in Francophone Africa, including at meetings and conferences in the region.  He has led research missions for the Resource Centre in Dem. Rep. of Congo, Guinea, Niger, and Senegal (Kédougou region).  He is a lawyer and a human rights advocate.  He previously worked as a legal advisor within Geneva for Human Rights; as a research project manager for the Domestic Violence Office in Geneva and as a social worker at a residential refugee centre in Geneva.  Aliou also worked as a legal intern for the Intl. Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and interned at the Office of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva.

Aliou was educated at Graduate Institute of Intl. & Development Studies in Geneva where he obtained a Ph.D. in Intl. Criminal & Humanitarian Law, and at Gdansk University where he earned a Master's (LLM) in Intl. Law & Human Rights Law. He also earned degrees in International Law from the University of Helsinki, the Geneva International Peace Research Institute (GIPRI) and the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) in Geneva. Aliou’s mother tongue is Serer, he is fluent in Wolof & French, and has strong Polish & English. Aliou is a national of Senegal.

Joseph Kibugu, Eastern Africa senior Researcher & Representative (based in Nairobi)
kibugu [at] business-humanrights.org   @joekibugu 

Joseph Kibugu joined the Resource Centre in January 2012.  He has conducted research missions in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Malawi.  Joe worked at International Justice Mission in Kenya for over nine years, leading the organization’s work in Kenya addressing issues including gender-based violence, illegal detention, unprosecuted rape and murder, land seizure, and police accountability.  Joe worked in Freetown as an intern at the Special Court for Sierra Leone.  Joe obtained his law degree from Univ. of Nairobi and has a Masters in International Human Rights Law from Univ. of Notre Dame, USA.  One of Joe’s courses at Notre Dame was “Transnational Corporations and Human Rights” under Prof. Douglass Cassel.  As well as conducting regional research missions, Joe has also represented the Resource Centre at key international business and human rights events.  Joe is fluent in English and Swahili and is proficient in French. Joseph is a national of Kenya.

Manson Gwanyanya, Southern & Anglophone West Africa Regional Researcher & Representative (based in Johannesburg)
gwanyanya [at] business-humanrights.org

Manson Gwanyanya completed his articles of clerkship at the Legal Resources Centre (‘LRC’) Johannesburg office in December 2018 after which he officially joined the Resource Centre. Prior to this position, he worked as a Legal Researcher at the same organization in the migration and refuges unit. His previous experience also includes Junior Researcher in the Socio and Economic Rights Programme (ESR) at the South African Human Rights Commission and Sessional Lecturer at the Wits Law School. Manson obtained his LLB (Bachelor of Laws) LLM (Masters) in Corporate Law as well as a Post Graduate Diploma in Environmental Law from Wits University in 2011, 2012 and 2013 respectively. He also worked as a Research & Teaching Associate and Sessional Lecturer at Wits University between 2012 and 2014 where he taught a number of undergraduate courses such as Constitutional Law, Delict, Business Entities, and Insolvency Law. Manson has a strong passion for human rights law in general and access to justice for the poor and marginalised in particular. 

Asia & Pacific

Betty Yolanda, Asia Regional Manager
yolanda [at] business-humanrights.org

Betty joined the Resource Centre in February 2019 as Asia Regional Manager following her tenure at the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA), a human rights and development organisation with 67 member organisations in 21 countries across Asia, where she worked since 2014 as Programme Manager then Co-Director. Betty led FORUM-ASIA’s work on freedoms of expression, assembly, and association as well as civil society engagement with the UN human rights mechanisms, ASEAN human rights commission, national human rights institutions including on the issue of business and human rights. 

From 2011-2014, Betty led the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI)’s work in Southeast Asia to strengthen the capacity of public interest lawyers in engaging with the ASEAN human rights mechanisms. Prior to ABA ROLI, Betty dedicated her time working as a human rights lawyer and researcher at the Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy (ELSAM) for more than seven years. A Chevening scholar, Betty holds an LL.M in international human rights law with Merit from the University of Essex, United Kingdom. She has a bachelor’s degree in international law from the Catholic University of Atma Jaya, Jakarta. Betty is a national of Indonesia.

Amy Sinclair,  Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Researcher & Representative (based in Sydney)
sinclair[at]business-humanrights.org  @AmyJSinclair

Amy joined the Resource Centre in January 2017. She is the Resource Centre's first regional representative and researcher for Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific region.

Amy is an international lawyer, researcher and adviser working in the non-profit sector to advance respect for human rights in business. She advises NGOs, governments and public bodies on business and human rights law, policy and strategies for change. 

Amy is appointed to the Australian Government’s Expert Advisory Committee on Modern Slavery; the Law Council of Australia’s Business and Human Rights Committee; and the Law Society of NSW’s Human Rights Committee. She is an Adjunct Lecturer in Law at Australian Human Rights Institute, UNSW, and frequent public commentator on business and human rights developments.

Formerly a corporate lawyer, practicing with major international legal practices in Australia, Hong Kong and the UK, Amy is dual-qualified and admitted to practice law in Australia and the UK.

Amy holds a Master of Arts in History from King's College London. She holds a Postgraduate Diploma in International Human Rights Law (Distinction) from the University of New South Wales, which focused on corporate human rights obligations and the international human rights framework governing companies. She holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice from the College of Law London and a Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Warwick. Amy is a national of both Australia and the UK.

Lowell Chow, Eastern Asia Senior Researcher & Representative (based in Hong Kong)
chow [at] business-humanrights.org   @lllchow

Lowell joined the Resource Centre in 2011.  He is responsible for research and outreach in the Greater China region (including mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan), and has led research missions to Beijing, Taiwan, Shenzhen, and Guangzhou.  Lowell formerly worked for UL-STR Responsible Sourcing; interned at Médecins Sans Frontières, and was a student delegate for Oxfam Youth Campaign Partners.  He was educated at the University of Nottingham (MA Corporate Social Responsibility) and the University of Hong Kong (BSc Honours).  His mother tongue is Cantonese and he is fluent in English and Mandarin. Lowell is from Hong Kong SAR. 

Golda S. Benjamin, Southeast Asia Researcher & Representative (based in Dumaguete City, Philippines)
benjamin[at]business-humanrights.org

Golda joined the Resource Centre in March 2017. She currently teaches at the Silliman University College of Law, handling subjects on civil law and human rights. She also has a solo law firm which allows her to work on development policy reform and a few select corporate cases. She currently sits as one of the civil society representatives in the Philippine Multisectoral Group for the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. Prior to these, she served as chief for legislation of a senator of the Republic of the Philippines and supervised the development of various laws including amendments to the anti-money laundering law, the compensation for martial law victims act, and people participation in the budget process bill. Before her full-time engagement at the Senate, Golda worked as a consultant to Congress representatives working on budget reform and food security measures, and to the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee and the Secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform. Her alternative law practice began at IDEALS, Inc.-Philippines where she focused on agrarian reform, tax justice, environment and trade issues, handling litigation, advocacy, and policy reform. Golda has a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of the Philippines. She also has a masters degree, with specialization in international commercial arbitration law from Stockholm University, Sweden. She speaks English and Filipino and is currently learning French. Golda is a national of Philippines.

Jose Jello Cubelo, Southeast Asia Research Assistant (based in Dumaguete City, Philippines)
cubelo[at]business-humanrights.org

Jose joined the Research Centre as Research Assistant for Southeast Asia in June 2017. He is in the final year of his law studies at Silliman University. Jose is currently the editor of the Silliman Law Journal and he is an active member of the school’s moot court team, participating in International Law moot court competitions. He was also a student volunteer at the Salonga Center for Law and Development – a university-based entity working on issues involving environmental law, social justice, and human rights, and labour. Prior to law school, he worked as a writer for a local newspaper in Cebu. He holds a Bachelor of Mass Communication degree from Silliman University. Jose is a national of Philippines.

Europe & Central Asia

Eniko Horvath, Senior Researcher (based in Basel)
horvath [at] business-humanrights.org   @enikohorvath

Eniko joined the Resource Centre in 2011 as an intern and returned in 2012 as a Researcher.  She is currently Senior Researcher & Project Lead responsible for the climate justice and UN Guiding Principles workstreams and oversees the Centre's work in Europe. She has carried out research missions to Switzerland, Bolivia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Chile, Florida, USA (Immokalee agricultural region) and Serbia. She has experience working on human rights in Argentina (Asociación Civil por la Responsabilidad Social AMARTYA), Hungary (International Centre for Democratic Transition), Spain (Club De Madrid) and the UK (Cluster Munition Coalition and Consortium for Street Children).  Eniko holds a BA from Harvard University and an MPhil from the University of Cambridge.  For her master’s dissertation, she undertook fieldwork in Argentina on the exploitation of Bolivian migrant workers in the clothing industry.  Eniko is fluent in English, French, Spanish, and Hungarian, with some Italian and Russian. Eniko is a national of Hungary.

Thulsi Narayanasamy, Senior Labour Researcher (Based in London)

narayanasamy [at] business-humanrights.org

Thulsi joined the Resource Centre in August 2019 to deliver research and analysis on labour rights issues including freedom of association and collective bargaining, living wage, and forced labour in supply chains.She has over a decade of experience working on human and labour rights issues with a strong grounding in community and worker-led struggles in the global South, particularly across Asia and the Pacific. She has worked on refugee and migrant worker rights, labour rights in agricultural and manufacturing supply chains, customary land rights in Melanesia, land grabs by the extractives industry and conducted considerable research into international corporate practices that generate systematic human rights violations that disproportionately affect women.She previously led the Asia programme at UK charity, War on Want, leading policy, advocacy and campaign work on labour and land rights. She is also the former Executive Director of Australian NGO, Aid/Watch, which advocates on international aid, trade agreements and foreign investment policy and practice. Thulsi has engaged as a media commentator on social and economic justice issues and written extensively on the same. Thulsi is a national of Australia with a BA in Gender Studies from the University of Melbourne and an MA in Political Economy and speaks English, Tamil, Spanish and Hindi.

Alysha Khambay, Labour Researcher (based in London)
khambay [at] business-humanrights.org 

Alysha joined the Resource Centre in 2018. As Labour Researcher, she is responsible for carrying out research across all labour rights issues, with a particular focus on the apparel sector. Alysha has over seven years of experience working in human rights organisations in the UK and Southeast Asia. Prior to the Resource Centre, Alysha supported Stonewall's international campaigns, policy, and research work to advance LGBT rights internationally, coordinating with a global network of LGBT rights activists. Alysha has worked as a Human Rights Consultant at the Cambodian Center for Human Rights, where she monitored and investigated rights abuses related to land grabbing, the exploitation of natural resources and Cambodia’s garment industry, and as a Researcher at the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma). Alysha holds an LLM in Human Rights from Birkbeck, University of London, an MSc in Violence, Conflict, and Development from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) and a BA (Hons) in History from the University of Kent. Alysha is a UK national.  

Mayisha Begum, Labour Research Assistant (based in London)
begum [at] business-humanrights.org

Mayisha joined the Resource Centre in June 2019 as a Labour Research Assistant. Prior to this she supported the work of the labour team as a research and projects intern, assisting with online research and web-based projects. Mayisha has previously volunteered at TRAID, conducting desk research on exploitation in the garment supply chain, and in 2015 she founded Convoy to Calais, a project in which she organised events across London to collect supplies for refugees living in Calais. She is also the founder of Oh So Ethical, a blog which addresses exploitation and labour rights, particularly the garment industry, aiming to make these conversations more accessible. She holds an MSc in Labour, Social Movements and Development from SOAS, University of London and a BSc in Psychology from Queen Mary, University of London. Her academic research has focused on labour rights, corporate accountability, freedom of association and worker-led movements. Her thesis focused on the Bangladesh Accord. Mayisha is a UK national.

Ella Skybenko, Eastern Europe/Central Asia Researcher & Representative (based in Kyiv)
skybenko [at] business-humanrights.org

Ella joined the Resource Centre in 2008.  She is responsible for research and outreach in Eastern Europe & Central Asia and has conducted regional missions to the Czech Republic, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia, Romania, and Bulgaria.  Ella formerly worked as an HIV/AIDS program manager at Holt International Children’s Services and program coordinator at American International Health Alliance.  Ella holds an MSc in Global Health from the University of Manchester; Master's degree in International Relations with a concentration in International Law from the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv; and MA in International Human Rights from the University of Denver.  Her mother tongues are Ukrainian and Russian. She speaks fluent English. Ella is a national of Ukraine.

Johannes Blankenbach, EU / Western Europe Researcher & Representative (based in Berlin)
blankenbach [at] business-humanrights.org  @JBlankenbach

Johannes joined the Resource Centre in May 2018 as EU/Western Europe Regional Researcher & Representative. Prior to this, he worked at the German Development Institute/Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) as a researcher for more than five years, contributing to knowledge cooperation across the institute’s Managing Global Governance (MGG) network with partner institutions from emerging economies. He co-chaired a research project on private/voluntary sustainability standards and also helped to set up the German chapter of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), which focuses on the national implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In 2011, Johannes was an intern and consultant with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in Eschborn. Earlier internships included working at Women in Security, Conflict Management and Peace (WISCOMP) in New Delhi and at Friedrich Ebert Foundation in Tunis. Johannes holds a BA in International Relations from Dresden University (TU Dresden) and an interdisciplinary MSc in Human Rights from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). His MSc thesis focused on the role of human rights in the peacebuilding process in Afghanistan. Johannes speaks fluent German and English, with a good knowledge of French and some basic Arabic. Johannes is a national of Germany.

Saskia Wilks, Labour Rights and Western Europe Research Assistant (based in Berlin)
wilks[at] business-humanrights.org

Saskia joined the Resource Centre as a German language Research Intern in April 2017. She holds a BA in Sociology and Cultural Studies and a Masters in Human Rights from the University of Sussex. While studying for her Masters, Saskia also worked at the University of Sussex as a Research and Data Assistant, focusing on maternal health and human rights. Prior to joining the Resource Centre, Saskia volunteered with Maternity Worldwide, a Brighton based NGO committed to saving lives in childbirth, where she provided support to their fundraising team. More recently, she spent time in Asia, volunteering as an English teacher in Sri Lanka. Her native languages are German and English, and she has basic knowledge of French and Italian. Saskia is a national of both Germany and the UK.

North America

Christen Dobson, Senior Project Lead & Researcher (based in New York)
dobson [at] business-humanrights.org 

Christen joined the Resource Centre in March 2017 as Senior Project Lead & Researcher. She is currently the regional researcher for North America, a member of the civic freedoms & human rights defenders team, and covers technology & human rights. Prior to joining the Centre, Christen worked as a human rights research consultant and recently co-authored an analysis of the funding landscape in support of women and the environment with Global Greengrants Fund and Prospera-International Network of Women's Funds. From 2009 to 2016, Christen led the Human Rights Funders Network's Research and Policy program, where she managed a global research initiative to map and analyze the landscape of human rights funding and supported donor efforts to address closing space for civil society. Christen has also consulted with Energy Foundation and Wellspring Philanthropic Fund and has worked and/or interned with Global Youth Connect, EarthRights International, Safe Horizon's Anti-Trafficking Program, and UN Women's East and Southeast Asia Regional Office. She is also on the International Council of Peace Brigades International. Christen holds a Master of International Affairs degree with a concentration in human rights from Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Mount Union College with a double major in International Studies and Japanese. Her mother tongue is English, she has a good knowledge of Spanish and speaks some Japanese. Christen is a national of the USA.

Annie Signorelli, Project Manager for Renewable Energy and Human Rights (based in Washington, DC) 
signorelli [at] business-humanrights.org

Annie joined the Resource Centre in March 2019 as Project Manager for Renewable Energy and Human Rights. Prior to joining the Resource Centre Annie was Deputy Director of Advocacy for Corporate Engagement at the Enough Project, where she worked for 6 years. She led Enough’s consumer advocacy work and was the lead author of the organization's 2017 conflict minerals company rankings report and 2018 report on the nexus between corruption and cobalt mining in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In 2011, Annie conducted research on post-conflict transformation in the Acholi sub-region of northern Uganda. She was also previously a policy intern for Global Witness.

Annie holds a bachelor's degree in Anthropology and Peace and Justice Studies from Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts.

Latin America

Julia Mello Neiva, Brazil, Portugal & Portuguese-speaking Africa Senior Researcher & Representative (based in São Paulo)
neiva [at] business-humanrights.org

Julia is a human rights lawyer who has joined the Resource Centre in 2013.  She is responsible for research and outreach in Brazil, Portugal, and Portuguese-speaking Africa, and has conducted regional missions to Belém and Rio de Janeiro.  Julia taught human rights course in Angola, as a consultant for Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa; assisted São Tomé & Principe Government with transparency laws, co-authored a research project coordinated by Intl. Commission of Jurists in partnership with Conectas Humans Rights: “Access to Justice: Human Rights Abuses Involving Corporations - Brazil”.  She is one of the founding members of Conectas Human Rights, where she was a Justice Program Coordinator. She has also worked with African American Policy Forum; Columbia Law School Human Rights Clinic; and Center for Reproductive Rights.  She co-taught the first academic course in Brazil on business & human rights, at Law School of Fundação Getulio Vargas, and is a member of the Human Rights and Business Group of the school.  She was educated at Columbia Univ. School of Law (LLM, human rights focus); Univ. of São Paulo Law School (graduate specialisation in human rights); Pontifical Catholic Univ. of São Paulo (Bachelor of Law).  Julia’s mother tongue is Portuguese.  She is also fluent in English and Spanish and has a good understanding of French. Julia is a national of Brasil.

Amanda Romero Medina, South America Senior Researcher and Representative (based in Bogotá)
romero [at] business-humanrights.org

Amanda Romero has been working as Latin America & Caribbean Researcher & Representative for Business & Human Rights Resource Centre since April 2011 (in January 2015 her title changed to South America Researcher & Representative when we hired our first Mexico, Central America & the Caribbean Researcher & Representative).  In this role, she often meets with local NGOs and grassroots, and with companies.  She has also undertaken business & human rights missions to Bolivia, Chile, Guatemala, Peru, Mexico, and Argentina.  She is based in Bogotá, Colombia, and has been a human rights researcher and educator since the late 1970s.  She has worked with Latin American and international NGOs, and was the American Friends Service Committee’s Quaker International Affairs Representative for the Andean Region and Panama from 2000 to 2006; she also served for 6 years as a member of the civil society organizations’ committee that advised the United Nations Development Programme Administrator in New York.  Amanda holds a Ph.D. degree in Education and a Masters’ Degree in Educational and Social Development from Universidad Pedagógica Nacional, Colombia; and has completed a number of specialised human rights courses, and on armed conflict and humanitarian law.  Amanda’s mother tongue is Spanish and she is fluent in English. Amanda is a national of Colombia.

Melissa Ortiz Massó, Mexico, Central America & the Caribbean Researcher & Representative (based in Mexico City)
ortiz [at] business-humanrights.org @melamalo

Melissa joined the Resource Centre as Regional Researcher & Representative for Mexico, Central America & the Caribbean.  Prior to joining the Research Center, Melissa worked as an independent consultant working with social movements and human rights organizations. She also worked with the renowned organization Fundar Centro de Análisis e Investigación for 10 years as a promoter and in charge of relations with the national legislature. Melissa’s work has been focused on issues of government and open parliament, legislative impact and advocacy, gender equality, human rights, access to information, accountability and transparency. Melissa has a degree in International Relations from the National Autonomous University of Mexico. Her mother tongue is Spanish, she is fluent in English, and has a basic level of Portuguese. Melissa is a national of Mexico.

Diana Figueroa Prado, Mexico, Central America & the Caribbean Researcher & Representative (based in Mexico City)

prado [at] business-humanrights.org

Prior to joining the Resource Centre, Diana was Advocacy Coordinator at Tlachinollan Human Rights Centre in the indigenous region of the mountain of Guerrero, Mexico. She worked alongside national and international organizations, as well as different UN mechanisms to demand justice for victims of serious human rights violations and gender violence; she also pushed for recognition and respect of indigenous normative systems and against criminalisation of human rights defenders. Diana was a Legal Researcher at the Human Rights Centre Clinic of the University of Essex, where she participated in the project “Business and Human Rights: Engendering Human Rights Due Diligence”. She was a Research Associate at the NGO Renace and supported the advocacy and campaigning work of Amnesty International Mexico. Diana has collaborated in different capacities at the Brazilian Embassy in Mexico City, UNDP Mexico and the state government of Nuevo León. She has taught courses and workshops to the general public, activists and judges on human rights, gender perspective and business and human rights. Diana has a degree in International Relations by Monterrey Institute of Technology and an LL.M in Economic, Social and Cultural Rights by the University of Essex. Her mother tongue is Spanish, she is fluent in English, Portuguese and French, and has a good knowledge of German and Italian. Diana is a national of Mexico. 

Hannah Matthews, Research Assistant (based in Mexico City)
matthews [at] business-humanrights.org

Hannah is a UK national, she studied History at Bristol University and has a masters degree in Human Rights from the School of Advanced Study at the University of London.  Since finishing her masters she lived for four years in Colombia where she worked as a freelance journalist for several publications as well as for different local NGOs.  She spent three years working in the field for Peace Brigades International accompanying human rights defenders in different parts of the country.  During her last year, she focused on political advocacy pushing for better protection mechanisms for human rights defenders in Bogota and in Washington DC, USA.  She has spent the last 8 months working for Peace Brigades International in Mexico as Communications Coordinator.

Middle East 

Diana Eltahawy, Gulf Programme Manager (based in London)
eltahawy [at] business-humanrights.org

Prior to joining the Resource Centre in August 2019, Diana worked with the UN human rights component in Libya focusing on the protection of civilians and arbitrary detention. Between 2008 and 2016, she was a researcher in the Middle East and North Africa Programme at Amnesty International. In that capacity, she carried-out investigations into human rights and laws-of-war violations in a number of countries including Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Libya, Morocco/Western Sahara and Tunisia. In 2014, Diana led the Criminal Justice Unit at the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights. Diana researched, authored dozens of reports and conducted advocacy on a range of human rights issues including sexual and gender-based violence, refugee and migrant rights, excessive use of force, human rights and counterterrorism and freedom of expression. Diana holds an MSc in Development Studies from the London School of Economics and Political and a bachelor’s degree in International Relations and Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. She speaks Arabic, Russian and French. 

Isobel Archer, Project Assistant – Migrant Workers in Qatar & the UAE (based in London)
archer [at] business-humanrights.org @isobellarcher

Isobel joined the Resource Centre in 2019 as Project Assistant for the Migrant Workers in Qatar & the UAE project. Her knowledge of modern slavery, and business and human rights comes from her time working and interning for a number of organisations, including an internship at the Resource Centre. Isobel also gained experience at Shiva Foundation, Environmental Resources Management (ERM) and Ardea International where she focused on corporate disclosure, improving access to labour rights, and tackling human trafficking in the hotel, construction, and professional service sectors. Isobel holds an MA (Dist.) Understanding & Securing Human Rights from the University of London; her thesis focused on the role of private sector collaboration in tackling modern slavery and implementing human rights norms. She also holds a BA (Hons) English Literature from the University of Exeter, the UK including an additional year studying at the University of Otago, New Zealand.

Alia Hindawi, Jordan, and Lebanon Project Manager (based in Amman)
hindawi[at]business-humanrights.org

Alia Hindawi has been working in the field of migration for nearly a decade, with experience in emergency, transit, and development contexts. Ms. Hindawi started her career by working with Iraqi refugees in the US Resettlement Programme at IOM in Jordan. She then moved to the technical cooperation department to work on another thematic area; Migration and Border Management. After that, she moved to the Iraqi programme of the Danish Refugee Council where she supported the management of 12 field offices spread throughout Iraq. This paved for her following tenure at the ILO as the migration project manager, working with migrant workers and later on with Syrian refugees and host communities under the livelihood sector of the UN Refugee Response Plan for Jordan. A Chevening laureate, Ms Hindawi has a BA in Economics from the Applied Science University, MA in Economics from the University of Jordan, and MSc in International Migration and Public Policy with Merit from London School of Economics and Political Science, and an alumna of US State Department MEPI with a Fellowship from the Maxwell School of Mawell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs of Syracuse University.

Farah Altarazi, Jordan and Lebanon Research Assistant (based in Amman)
al_tarazi [at] business-humanrights.org

Farah Altarazi joined the Resource Centre as a Research Assistant in March 2019, she gained her solid knowledge of research and project management skills through working in leading NGOs in Jordan, she has worked with Handicap International (currently named Humanity & Inclusion)  in their Mission inside Syria, and with INTERSOS organization in Jordan Mission, focusing on Humanitarian Aid to Syrian Refugees and educational projects, health, and psycho-social assistance, education, vocational training, and job placement, as well as income-generating activities. Her passion for humanitarian work started from an earlier stage, while she was studying in her secondary school and during her bachelor's study, she volunteered in many international and national organizations: KOICA, British Council, SIGI Jordan, she took a part in supporting their projects for Human Rights and equality and help to carry out development projects inside Jordan to improve the local community and empowering women. Farah holds  a B.Sc. degree in industrial engineering from Jordan University of Science and Technology, and she is a Certified Supply Chain Analyst Which Accredited by the International Supply Chain Education Alliance (ISCEA), Currently she is continuing her master in Industrial engineering /Management at the University of Jordan, Farah is a national of Jordan and she speaks Arabic, English, and some basics of Spanish 

 

Salma Houerbi, MENA Regional Researcher and Representative (based in Tunis)
houerbi [at] business-humanrights.org

Salma joined the Resource Centre in March 2019. She is responsible for the research and outreach for the Middle East and North Africa region. Salma gained solid knowledge of advocacy and research through her previous experiences at the International Labour Organization in Geneva and at Better Work Jordan. She advocated among national stakeholders, private sector actors, and community-based organizations for gender-responsive labour integration policies, refugees decent working conditions and migrants workers' access to social protection. Prior to that, Salma was supporting projects of the Danish Institute for Human Rights aiming at strengthening human rights systems in the region. 

Driven by feminism and social justice, her research interests span Bangladesh, Jordan, and Tunisia and focus on alternative economies, gendered labour, and collective voice. 

Salma is a national of Tunisia and holds a Master Degree in Business and Development Studies from Copenhagen Business School. She is fluent in Arabic, French, English, and German. 

Projects

KnowTheChain

Felicitas Weber, KnowTheChain Project Lead (based in London)
weber [at] business-humanrights.org

Felicitas joined the Resource Centre in 2016.  She is leading the development of the KnowTheChain project, working closely with the initiative's partners Humanity United, Sustainalytics, and Verite.  KnowTheChain is ranking large global ICT, food & beverage, and apparel companies on their efforts to address forced labour in their supply chains.

From 2011-2016, Felicitas worked for the ESG Engagements team at the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment.  Initially in charge of managing the PRI's investor collaboration platform, she was subsequently responsible for managing the PRI's investor-company engagements on social issues, including on topics such as labour practices in agricultural supply chains, and for raising awareness and understanding of human rights issues and their impacts on investor portfolios through events, publications, webinars and podcasts.

Prior to joining the PRI, Felicitas worked in communication, events and development for the UK charities Teach First and Historic Royal Palaces.  She holds a Master in Political Science, Philosophy and Economics from Universität Leipzig, a Certificate of Political Studies from Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Rennes as well as a qualification in European Quality and Project Management.  Her thesis focused on migration and European border policies.  She is fluent in English and German and has a good understanding of French.


Rosie Monaghan, KnowTheChain Researcher & Representative (based in London)
monaghan [at] business-humanrights.org

Rosie joined the Research Centre as KnowTheChain Research Assistant in June 2017. She supports the research methodology for KnowTheChain and carries out research and analysis of Modern Slavery Statements, corporate disclosure, and allegations of forced labour. She holds an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the Irish Centre for Human Rights and a law degree from Oxford Brookes University. Her academic research has focused on legal protection for victims of human trafficking, and human rights due diligence as a tool for addressing slavery in supply chains. Rosie has previously undertaken internships at the Equal Rights Trust, supporting the Trust's litigation and advocacy programmes; the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants; and volunteered as a researcher with the Sophie Hayes Foundation. Rosie is a national of UK.

Evie Clarke, KnowTheChain Research Assistant (based in London)
clarke [at] business-humanrights.org

Evie joined the Research Centre as KnowTheChain Research Assistant in June 2019. She supports KnowTheChain’s goal to enable companies and investors to understand and address forced labour risks within their global supply chains by benchmarking corporate practices and providing practical resources.
Evie was previously volunteering as an advice and advocacy worker with Southwark Day Centre for Asylum Seekers. She has gained experience as an intern at Sentinel Human Rights Defenders and as a Researcher for LSE ProBono Matters and for the European Law Students’ Association in a project in collaboration with the ILO.
She holds an LLM in Human Rights Law from the LSE and an LLB from Trinity College Dublin. Her academic research has focused on human rights, labour law and refugee law. Her thesis focused on the detention of asylum seekers in the UK.

Civic Freedoms & Human Rights Defenders

AnaAna Zbona, Civic Freedoms & Human Rights Defenders Project Manager (based in London)
zbona [at] business-humanrights.org  @A_Zbona 

Ana joined the Resource Centre in 2016. She is Project Manager, Civic Freedoms & Human Rights Defenders project. The project explores the role of business in these spheres.

Before joining the Resource Centre, Ana worked as a manager of a fair trade/community development program with the NGO Mosqoy, working with indigenous communities in the Peruvian Andes. Prior to that, Ana was an advocacy assistant in the EU advocacy team of Human Rights Watch in Brussels, a research assistant for the Slovenian Human Rights Ombudswoman, and a fellow at the EU Delegation to the UN and at the Slovenian Mission to the UN.

Ana holds a Master's degree from the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation (EIUC), Italy, and Lund University, Sweden. She has a BA in International Development and International Relations from Saint Mary's University, Canada. Her mother tongue is Slovenian; she also speaks fluent English and Spanish, intermediate French and Croatian, and a little bit of Italian and Quechua. Ana is a national of Slovenia.

UK Modern Slavery Act Registry

Patricia Carrier, Modern Slavery Registry Project Manager (based in London) 
carrier [at] business-humanrights.org

Patricia joined the Resource Centre in 2016.  Working with the labour rights team, her work focuses on company reporting under the UK Modern Slavery Act and managing the Modern Slavery Registry, a central registry of modern slavery statements. She also leads on advocacy work related to transparency in supply chains legislations in other countries. Previously, she worked with the Resource Centre as a legal intern and then a researcher on the Corporate Legal Accountability team. Patricia worked as a Research Assistant for the UN-supported Principles of Responsible Investment, where she researched corporate reporting on the UNGPs in the extractives sector, as well as labour practices in agricultural supply chains. Patricia has also worked as a researcher on human rights issues at Amnesty International and Interights and has worked on policy issues in the field of responsible investment at ShareAction. She is a licensed attorney in the U.S. and a qualified solicitor in England and Wales. Patricia has an LLM in Public International Law from the University of Oslo, a Juris Doctor from DePaul University College of Law, and a BA in Political Economy from DePaul University. She is fluent in English and Spanish and has good knowledge of Norwegian. Patricia is a national of U.S. 

Corporate Accountability & Communications

Joe Bardwell, Senior Officer - Corporate Accountability & Communications (based in London)
bardwell [at] business-humanrights.org   @JosephBardwell

Joe joined the Resource Centre in 2014.  He collaborates with our researchers around the world to pursue adequate accountability and remedy for victims of human rights abuse and works to increase media and social media coverage of the Resource Centre’s work.  Joe previously worked at ESCR-Net’s Corporate Accountability Working Group, where he was involved in communications for the campaign for a binding treaty on business and human rights.  Prior to this, Joe investigated human rights violations as a Legal Trainee and Legal Researcher at the European Centre for Constitutional and Human Rights; researched the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises for the Hertie School of Governance, Berlin; and worked as an adviser on disability and mental health issues, and the UK Equality Act.  Joe holds an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the Irish Centre for Human Rights and a BA in Criminology from the University of Central Lancashire. Joe is a national of UK.


Image of Alex GuyAlex Guy, Digital Officer (based in London)

guy [at] business-humanrights.org @alexg05

Alex joined the Resource Centre in September 2017. Working with the Communications team he is responsible for the organization’s digital presence, empowering human rights advocates through our web and social media channels. With a passion for championing ethical business practices sparked whilst traveling in South East Asia, he previously worked for Microsoft in relationship marketing and social media, creating online content, running events and maintaining websites to help technology professionals get to grips with the latest advancements in the IT industry. Alex holds a BA in Business from the University of Portsmouth. Alex is a  national of UK.

Adam Barnett, Communications Officer (based in London)
barnett [at] business-humanrights.org  @adambarnett13

Adam joined the Resource Centre in October 2018. Adam works across all our regions and projects to support communications, with a particular focus on increasing media coverage of our work, and the activities of our partners. Adam previously worked as a journalist for newspapers and digital outlets, including the I newspaper and the Independent. He covered news and politics with a focus on social justice and human rights. Adam was Staff Writer at Left Foot Forward and Local Democracy Reporter on a BBC scheme. He has also written features and op-eds for magazines, including politics.co.uk, Little Atoms, Open Democracy, and Progress, and has been a regular contributor to Private Eye. Adam is an industry-accredited journalist with a diploma from the National Council for the Training of Journalists and is a member of the National Union of Journalists. Adam is a UK national.

Alice Powell, Weekly Update Editor 
powell [at] business-humanrights.org

Alice joined the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre part-time in 2018 as Weekly Update Editor. She has worked as a research & communications consultant for a number of international organisations & NGOs, including the Engine Room, EITI & GIZ;  her key focus has been on natural resource management, gender & extractives, and open government issues. Previously she was Digital Media Manager at the US Embassy in Havana and Communications Coordinator at Publish What You Pay. Alice holds an MSC in Comparative European Politics from Trinity College Dublin and a BA in History from Cambridge. She speaks English, French, Spanish and very rusty German. Alice is a French & British national. 

Corporate Legal Accountability

Maysa Zorob, Corporate Legal Accountability Program Manager (based in New York)
zorob [at] business-humanrights.org

Maysa joined the Resource Centre in January 2018 as Corporate Legal Accountability Program Manager. Maysa has over 10 years of experience leading human rights and social justice initiatives and programmes across the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and the U.S. 

Prior to joining the Resource Centre, Maysa led the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Fellowship Programs at PILnet, the Global Network for Public Interest Law, based in New York. In this role, Maysa developed and oversaw the program syllabus, provided guidance and supervision to human rights Fellows, and devised and implemented cross-sectorial learning opportunities and strategies. In addition, she was responsible for devising and implementing strategic litigation, legal education and pro bono initiatives across the MENA region.

Before joining PILnet, Maysa managed the Justice Program at Euro-Med Rights, where she led EU and UN advocacy campaigns, coordinated trial monitoring missions, and led initiatives on judicial independence, transitional justice and access to justice across the Mediterranean. Between 2008 and 2012, Maysa worked for Al-Haq, a prominent Palestinian human rights organization, first in Ramallah, Palestine and later in Brussels, Belgium, where she established and managed the organization’s first European Office with a focus on EU human rights policies.

Maysa holds an LL.M. in European and International Law and an LL.B. in German Law from the University of Hamburg, Germany. She is fluent in Arabic, French, German, and English and has basic proficiency in Spanish. Maysa is a national of Germany and Palestine.

Elodie Aba, Senior Legal Researcher (based in France)
aba [at] business-humanrights.org @cla_bhrrc

Elodie joined the Resource Centre in January 2013.  She conducts research for the Corporate Legal Accountability project as well as on other business and human rights issues.  Elodie is a human rights lawyer and legal translator.  She was a research assistant at the One World Trust and previously worked at Handicap International UK.  She also interned at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia; the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights; and International Service for Human Rights.  Elodie has a Master of Laws (LL.M) from the University of Melbourne; a law degree in International and European Law from University of Paris XI; a degree of a legal translator from Institut Supérieur d’Interprétation et de Traduction (ISIT).  Her mother tongue is French and she speaks fluent English and some Spanish. Elodie is a national of France.

Development, finance and programme support 

Tanika West, Development Manager for Europe (based in London)
west [at] business-humanrights.org

Tanika joined the Resource Centre in 2017 as the Development Manager for Europe. She manages relationships and grant management with the Centre’s Europe-based funding sources and is responsible for supporting Global Team members in the development of their programmes. She works closely alongside the US-based Development Director and Development Officer in London. Previous to working at the Centre, Tanika spent five and a half years at Saferworld, an international conflict prevention and peace-building organization based in London, where she was responsible for leading the fundraising, programme development, and grant management for the organization’s Asia, Middle East, and North Africa, and Policy and Advocacy programmes. During her time at Saferworld, Tanika provided capacity building and programme development support to international staff and partner organizations working in the Caucasus, Bangladesh, Egypt, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Yemen. Prior to Saferworld, Tanika worked for ethical and fair trade business and holds a BA in English and Post-Colonial Literature from the University of York. Tanika is a national of UK.

Alex J photoAlex Janczenia, Development Officer (temporarily based in Australia)
janczenia [at] business-humanrights.org

Alex Janczenia was appointed in January 2015 as the Resource Centre’s Administration and Programme Support Officer, and in December 2016 transitioned to Development Officer.  Alex supports the Senior Development Director in expanding the Resource Centre's base of foundation and government donors and developing an individual giving programme, focused on major donors.  Alex previously worked as the fundraising and communications coordinator for Street Kids International UK, before which she held an internship position with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) supporting their private sector fundraising service.  Alex has a BA in Politics & Modern History, and an MA in Human Rights Law from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).  Her mother tongue is English, and she also has some French and German. Alex is a national of UK.

Teresa Torres Maestro, Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability, and Learning Officer (based in London)
torresmaestro [at] business-humanrights.org

Teresa joined the Resource Centre in May 2019 as the organization’s first Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning Officer. She works closely with the Global Team to drive effective monitoring, reporting and learning to inform programming and supports processes to improve communication of organizational impact and mission. Prior to joining the Centre, Teresa worked as MEAL officer in the UN’s World Food Programme for two and a half years between Rome and South Sudan, where she worked as capacity strengthening and reports officer. In this period her work was focused on ensuring the collection of quality data and compliance with programme implementation standards, designing logical frameworks and monitoring plans and developing standard operating procedures for process improvement. Prior to this, Teresa interned in the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs supporting the advancement of the human rights, peace and security and budgetary portfolios of the Spanish Secretary of State. Teresa holds a bachelor in Economics from the University Carlos III in Madrid and a Master’s on Human Rights and Democratization from the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratization and the University College of Dublin. Her mother tongue is Spanish and she’s also fluent in English and Italian.

Lakshmi Samarakoon ACCA, Finance Manager (based in London)
samarakoon [at] business-humanrights.org

Lakshmi joined the Resource Centre in January 2011. She manages the finance function and the finances of the organization. She previously worked as a financial accountant and finance systems implementation manager, where she worked mostly for private companies in a variety of industry sectors such as IT, transport, engineering, and healthcare. She was also a trustee of a small arts charity based in the UK: A.S.I.A. (Academy of South Indian Arts). Lakshmi was educated at Imperial College, London University (B(Eng) Hons Civil Engineering) and is an ACCA qualified accountant (ACCA – Association of Chartered Certified Accountants). Lakshmi is a national of UK.

Marta Narolewska, Junior Finance Assistant (based in London)
narolewska [at] business-humanrights.org

Marta Narolewska joined the Resource Centre in April 2019 as a Junior Finance Assistant. Marta supports the Finance Manager in the smooth operation of the organisation’s accounting function for both its group entities. She previously worked for companies in a variety of industry sectors such as accounting office, bank, factory, transport, and restaurant. Marta finished the University of Finance and Management. She completed the faculty of Management and Marketing, majoring in Managerial Finance, granted the Bachelor degree. Marta is a national of Poland.

Maja Janjic, Office Coordinator & Assistant to Executive Director (based in London)
 
janjic [at] business-humanrights.org

Maja Janjic joined the Resource Centre in April 2018 as an Office Coordinator and Assistant to Executive Director. She provides personal assistance to the Executive Director, supports with editing & dissemination of the Weekly Update, coordinates recruitments & inductions, supports dissemination & outreach efforts, maintains contact management systems, regularly updates our website and provides on-going support to our projects & programmes. Maja previously worked as a legal intern for Minority Rights Group International, a legal assistant for refugees and immigrants at Philanthropic Society, and as a legal assistant and PA to the Director at the University, among other roles. Maja has a Masters in Law from the University of Maribor. She is originally from Slovenia and speaks fluent English, Slovenian, Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, and basic German. Maja is a national of Slovenia.

Niki Mayers, Administrative & Program Support Officer (based in New York)
meyers [at] business-humanrights.org

Niki Mayers joined the Resource Centre in April 2018 as an Administrative and Program Support Officer. She provides assistance to the Deputy Director (Marti Flacks) as well as members of the team located in North America, supports the daily operation of the New York office, coordinates recruitments & inductions, supports dissemination & outreach efforts, maintains contact management systems, and provides on-going support to our projects & programmes. Niki previously worked as a business development assistant for Morrison and Foerster LLP team and as a legislative legal assistant for Hall & Evans, among other roles. Additionally, she has volunteered with multiple groups including the Colorado Network to End Human Trafficking and the American Cancer Society. Niki has a Bachelor of Arts in American Government, Policy, and Law from Colorado State University. She speaks fluent English and is learning German. Niki is a national of U.S. 

Founder & Former Director

Chris Avery

Chris founded Business & Human Rights Resource Centre in 2002 and was Director until he retired in September 2013.  He is a former Legal Adviser and Deputy Head of Research Department, Amnesty International - International Secretariat.  He authored Business and Human Rights in a Time of Change, a 108-page report published by Amnesty International UK in 2000.  Chris was educated at Columbia Univ. School of Law (LLM); Univ. of California, Davis, School of Law (JD Order of the Coif); Stanford Univ. (BA Honours). Chris is a national of both the U.S and UK.

Current Interns

May 2018 - Present: Vitória Dell'Aringa Rocha (based in São Paulo)

Vitória, a  Brazil national, is in her 2nd year of her bachelor's degree in International Relations at the Universidade de São Paulo (USP), Brazil. She has chosen to study International Relations because of her interests in human rights, international negotiations, peace operations and issues related to immigrants and refugees. She has already worked as a columnist in Folhinha (Folha de S. Paulo weekly children's supplement) and as an evaluator of original texts and new books for Brinque-Book, a children's publisher. Her last work experience was at the Walt Disney World® Resort International College Program, Florida, USA. Her other international experiences are related to improving her language skills: a week of classes at a public school in Uruguay and a month in Portsmouth, UK. She speaks English and Spanish, and basic French.

November 2018 - Present: Ana Laura Guzman Ortiz (based in London)

Ana joined the Resource Centre as an intern in the Communications team in November 2018. She supports across the breadth of our communications, and assists in increasing the media and social media coverage of our work to highlight allegations of corporate human rights abuse. Ana holds a BA in Social Communication from BUAP University. She was granted a scholarship to study a semester abroad in the University of Oviedo, Spain, which reinforced her interest in Communication for Development, Human Rights and Intercultural Studies. During her studies, Ana volunteered at an online news portal where she expanded her journalism and social issues knowledge and carried out an internship in the Communications team at the Regional Ethnobotanical Garden in Mexico. Her passion for Human Rights and Gender Equality has led her to volunteer at the Latin American Women’s Rights Service in London as the Community Activist Project Assistant, where she helps with the planning of workshops to empower women. Ana is originally from Mexico. Her mother tongue is Spanish and she is fluent in English.

December 2018 - Present: Mariel Emanuel (based in New York)

Mariel joined the Resource Centre in December 2018 as a legal intern and supports the Centre’s Corporate Legal Accountability, technology and human rights, and North America programmes. Mariel is a recent graduate from Georgetown University Law Center and holds a Certificate in Refugee and Humanitarian Emergencies. During law school, Mariel worked at Georgetown University Law Center as a Research Assistant, focusing on the intersection of neoliberalism and immigration reform. Prior to joining the Centre, Mariel was a legal intern for a variety of public interest organizations, including the Center for Reproductive Rights, the Children’s Defense Fund and International Rights Advocates. Mariel’s mother tongue is English and she has a basic level of Spanish. Mariel is a national of the United States and Canada.

February 2019 - Present: Otgontuya Davaanyam (based in Liverpool)

Otgontuya, a Mongolian national, joined the Resource Centre as a legal research intern in February 2019. She holds an LL.B in Business Law from the Shihihutug Law University. After obtaining her law degree, she worked for one of the leading commercial company in Mongolia as a corporate lawyer. Having been admitted to the Mongolian Bar Association, she decided to work in the international law firm Anderson and Anderson where she represented clients before international arbitration centers, including the Hong Kong International Arbitration Center and the London Court of International Arbitration. She was also a member of the Pro Bono Lawyers' Committee of the Mongolian Bar Association. She now aims to pursue a career in human rights law to improve the conditions and fight abuses in her home country of Mongolia. She is currently studying for a Master of International Human Rights Law at the University of Liverpool thanks to the support of the Hodgson Law Scholarship. She is fluent in Mongolian and English.

June 2019 - Present: Laura Perez Estevez (based in London)

Laura is a Spanish national, based in London, UK. She joined the BHRRC in June 2019 as an intern with the Civic Freedoms and Human Rights Defenders Project. She holds an MA in Human Rights and International Conflict from London Metropolitan University. Her MA dissertation focused on the corporations’ responsibility to respect Human Rights and she participated at the 6th UN Forum on Business and Human Rights in 2017, at the recommendation of the London Metropolitan University.  Prior to joining the BHRRC, she worked for Peace Brigades International (PBI) as the International Secretariat Administrator and Events Coordinator. She oversaw the PBI activities to commemorate the 20th Anniversary of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders (HRDs). Laura managed a global team to this end, and coordinated PBI-led gathering of HRDs from Kenya, Nepal, Mexico, Honduras, Colombia, Guatemala, and Indonesia in Brussels. She continues to be involved with PBI as part of Personal Subcommittee at PBI’s Mexico Project. Laura is passionate about social justice and has a strong commitment towards supporting the work of HRDs. Laura is member of the Global Business and Human Rights Scholars Association, she collaborates with the Network for International Law Students (NILS) and she’s got her own research project called The3rdResearch. She is fluent in English and in Spanish.

June 2019 - Present: Anna Van Miert (based in London)

Anna joined the Resource centre in June 2019 as an intern on the communications team. She is currently undertaking a BA in English and Sociology at the University of Leeds and intends to utilise her research experiences within the resource centre in her upcoming dissertation, with a focus on corporate and state crime. Her role at the Centre includes working on our website and social media channels to engage with the public and organisations, raising awareness of issues, publicising and promoting blogs, articles and events. Her areas of interest include labour rights, ethnic and gender discrimination, globalisation, privatisation and technology/media, and human rights. She aims to gain knowledge and experience in strengthening corporate accountability and transparency to advance human rights and remedy abuse, utilising forms of media in an effective way.

July 2019 – Present: Camila Gomez Wills (based in London)

Camila joined the Resource Centre in July 2019 as a Research and Projects Intern with the Labour Rights team in London. Originally Colombian, she brings to the team her experience in large scale public policy implementation for rural economic development, field research on income generation in East Africa, and work with undocumented youth migrants in the US. Currently, she is pursuing a Master's in Public Policy at the University of California, San Diego with a focus on social sustainability and modern slavery in global supply chains. She is fluent in Spanish and English and proficient in French. 

August 2019 - Present: Emily Foale (based in London)

Emily joined the Resource Centre in August 2019 as an intern in the Communications team, supporting the teams’ digital communications strategy, by promoting the Resource’s work and key news items on social media to raise awareness of corporate human rights abuses. She graduated last year from the University of York with a BA in History and English. Throughout her degree, she volunteered at Refugee Action York and completed an internship at Ardea International. Here, she helped to research human trafficking in various industries, worked with companies to help them move beyond compliance in their environmental and human rights policies, and managed Ardea International’s blog and social media streams. She also researched and wrote her own report on the reporting requirements and level of transparency in the UK jewellery industry, which was published in 2017. During her time at the Resource Centre she aims to advance her interests in modern slavery, issues related to refugees, climate justice and the use of communications as a tool to hold organisations to account. Her native language is English, and she is also proficient in Spanish. 

Former team members & interns

Click on the link above to see a list of our former team members & research Interns.

MENA regional researcher and representative