Gay J. McDougall (Chair)


Gay McDougall served as the first United Nations Independent Expert on Minority Issues from 2005 through 2011. She was Executive Director of the international NGO Global Rights from 1994 through 2006.

Among her many international roles, from 1997- 2001 she served as an Independent Expert on the UN treaty body that oversees compliance with the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, during which time she negotiated the adoption of General Recommendation XXV on the Gender Dimensions of Racial Discrimination, which requires governments to report explicitly on the situation of women impacted by racial discrimination. She played a leadership role in the UN Third World Conference against Racism.

Among her recent academic roles have been the Mulligan Distinguished Visiting Professor in International Law at Fordham Law School (2013); the Robert Drinan Visiting Professor in Human Rights at the Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. (2011-2012); Distinguished Scholar in Residence at the American University Washington College of Law (2006-2008); and Professor in the annual Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law at the American University (2010 and 2012).

Arjan Buteijn (Treasurer)


Between 1989 and 1993 Arjan Buteijn studied business, Dutch and English at the Hogeschool Zeeland University of Applied Sciences. He has worked in auditing for Dubois & Co. registered accountants, Interne Accountantsdienst Hollandsche Beton Groep NV and Adviesburo Vermeulen BV, before returning to Dubois & Co., where he is now an associate employee. During this time he has worked on auditing procedures for companies in the developing world and the public sector. He is on the committee of Stichting Boost, developing a hostel for young homeless people in The Hague which will include the chance to work and learn under supervision. He also lectures part time at the Hogeschool Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences.

Hurst Hannum


Since 1990 Hurst Hannum has served as Professor of International Law and Co-Director of the Center for Human Rights and Conflict Resolution at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. He has served as counsel in cases before the European and Inter-American Commissions on Human Rights and the United Nations; he also has been a member of the boards of several international human rights organizations. He has written about and/or participated in meetings concerned with minority rights generally, as well as particular situations in the Russian Federation (Tatarstan and Chechnya), Cyprus, Turkey, Northern Ireland, South Tyrol, India, Sri Lanka, East Timor, Sudan, Georgia (South Ossetia and Abkhazia), Greenland, the Balkans, Tibet, and U.S. dependent territories as well as serving as consultant to the UN negotiations on East Timor. Professor Hannum is author or editor of a number of publications on human rights law and practice, including Guide to International Human Rights Practice (Transnational Publishers, 3d ed. 1999) Autonomy, Sovereignty, and Self-Determination: The Accommodation of Conflicting Rights (Univ. of Pennsylvania, rev. ed. 1996). He completed both an A.B. with High Honours and J.D. at the University of California, Berkeley.

William Samuel

imagewillWilliam Samuel has worked as a chartered accountant with PriceWaterhouseCoopers, and served as head of the British diplomatic mission to the Turks and Caicos Islands. He also worked as Vice-Chair of the British independent booksellers, Foyle’s, opened in 1903 by his grandfather and great-uncle.

Dr Melakou Tegegn

imagedrDr Tegegn completed an MA in Development Studies: Politics of Alternative Development Strategies at the Institute of Social Studies, The Hague and a PhD in Sociology, concentrating on development, freedom and democracy in Ethiopia, at the University of South Africa, Pretoria. He has worked as a Development Consultant and coordinator for many country and regional development programmes with regional NGOs. His areas of expertise include civil society, gender, indigenous and pastoral peoples’ issues and development media. From 2001-2005 he lectured part time at the University of Addis Ababa and at the Institute of Gender Studies, on issues including civil society, globalization, gender and development and advocacy. His many publications include Power Politics: Kinijit in the 2005 Elections; in Zegeye, A., Togia, P., and Tegegn, M., Ethiopia: Ethiopian Millennium Special Publication (SAGE, New Delhi, forthcoming), and The Ethiopia-Eritrea Conflict: A Critical Observation, with Abebe Zegeye, (Institute of Global Dialogue, Occasional Paper No. 54, Johannesburg, 2007).

Meena Varma

imagemeenaMeena has been Director of Dalit Solidarity Network UK (DSN-UK) since 2007. DSN-UK campaigns against the atrocities, humiliation and poverty that over 260 million Dalits or ‘untouchables’ suffer due to caste discrimination.

Meena is also the Chair of the International Dalit Solidarity Network; a Board member and the Treasurer of the Ethical Trading Initiative and Coordinator of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Dalits.

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