Launch of the 2022 U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally
The U.S. Department of State’s Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, in coordination with the White House Gender Policy Council and USAID’s Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Hub, are pleased to invite you to the official launch of the 2022 U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally on Monday, December 12th at 9:00 AM EST.
As we celebrate the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, we know there is no better time to link arms with those advocating for the human rights of women, girls, and gender non-conforming persons around the world. The launch event will highlight key facets of the Strategy, share perspectives from U.S. government leaders across the interagency, and spotlight the voices of those who partnered with us throughout the development of the Strategy and were instrumental in informing this important update.
Jennifer Klein, Assistant to the President and White House Gender Policy Council Director
Jennifer Klein is Assistant to the President and Director of the White House Gender Policy Council, which she has led since President Biden first established the Gender Policy Council in March 2021. Klein has worked on domestic and global gender policy throughout her career and has advised the President on issues including reproductive rights, gender-based violence, and women’s economic security. During the Obama-Biden Administration, Klein served as a Deputy and Senior Advisor in the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues at the Department of State.
Antony J. Blinken, U.S. Secretary of State
Antony J. Blinken is the 71st U.S. Secretary of State. He was nominated by President Biden on November 23, 2020; confirmed by the U.S. Senate on January 26, 2021; and sworn in by Vice President Kamala Harris the following day. Over three decades and three presidential administrations, Mr. Blinken has helped shape U.S. foreign policy to ensure it protects U.S. interests and delivers results for the American people. He served as deputy secretary of state for President Barack Obama from 2015 to 2017, and before that, as President Obama’s principal deputy national security advisor.
Samantha Power, USAID Administrator
Samantha Power was sworn into office as the 19th Administrator of USAID on May 3, 2021. In leading the world’s premier international development agency and its global staff of over 10,000 people, Power will focus on helping the United States respond to four interconnected challenges: the COVID-19 pandemic and the development gains it has imperiled; climate change; conflict and humanitarian crises; and democratic backsliding. Power will also ensure that USAID enhances its longstanding leadership in areas including food security, education, women’s empowerment, and global health. Additionally, Power is the first USAID Administrator to be a member of the National Security Council, where she will ensure that development plays a critical role in America’s responses to a range of economic, humanitarian, and geopolitical issues.
Speakers and Panelists
Katrina Fotovat, Senior Official, Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, U.S. Department Of State
Katrina “Kat” Fotovat is currently the Senior Official to the Secretary of State in the Office of Global Women’s Issues (S/GWI), where she leads a team of gender experts promoting gender equality efforts including support of women, peace, and security, countering violent extremism, promoting women’s economic empowerment, and combatting gender-based violence. Ms. Fotovat has over 20 years of experience advocating gender and human rights globally, specifically in conflict and post-conflict settings. Previously, Ms. Fotovat was Director for the Office of Communications, Policy, and Partnerships, in the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations.
Jamille Bigio, Senior Coordinator for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in the Office of the Administrator, USAID
Jamille Bigio serves as the Senior Coordinator for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in the Office of the Administrator. Prior to joining USAID, Ms. Bigio served as a senior fellow on Women and Foreign Policy at the Council on Foreign Relations, where she researched, lectured, and published widely on the relationship between gender equality, national security, and global prosperity. She previously served as the director for human rights and gender on the White House National Security Council (NSC) staff and as the NSC representative on the White House Council on Women and Girls.
Varina Winder, Senior Advisor, Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, U.S. Department Of State
Varina Winder is the Senior Advisor in the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues (S/GWI) at the Department of State, where she leads policy development, interagency coordination, and strategic operations. Until February, she served as Senior Manager for Global Partnerships and Strategic Engagement at Family Planning 2020, a partnership housed at the United Nations Foundation, which aims to expand access to family planning information, services, and supplies to an additional 120 million women and girls.
Moderator: Stephanie Ogorzalek, Director for Gender-Based Violence and Cross-Cutting Issues, Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, U.S. Department Of State
Stephanie Ogorzalek serves as the Director for Gender-Based Violence and Cross-Cutting Issues in the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues (S/GWI) at the U.S. Department of State. Her team leads the State Department’s work to prevent and respond to gender-based violence globally, advance gender equality in multilateral fora, promote the health and rights of women and girls, and jointly address gender and climate challenges. A tireless champion for gender equality and human rights, Stephanie regularly advises the White House Gender Policy Council and senior U.S. Government leadership on gender and oversees the implementation of the U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally.
Erika Veloza, Director of GENFAMI
Erika Veloza, is from Colombia and the Director of GENFAMI, an NGO dedicated to improving the lives of girls, boys, adolescents and women at risk or survivors of GBV. She has spent 20 years on the front line of care and assistance programs for victims of sexual and gender-based violence, working with grassroots local women-led organizations, government response and international partners. As director of GENFAMI , Erika is part of the National Committee for the prevention and care of gender violence, the Board of Directors of the city of Bogotá against domestic violence, sexual violence and sexual exploitation, and different coalitions against trafficking in persons.
Kara Pyles, Director of Prevention and Response Initiatives, Vital Voices Global Partnership
Kara Pyles is the Director of Prevention and Response Initiatives for the Global Network & Regional Engagement team at Vital Voices Global Partnership. Kara has worked for 10 years in direct service provision to survivors of gender-based violence. She previously worked for an organization that provided education and prevention efforts around sexual assault and femicide on college campuses, after which she worked directly with survivors of GBV at a grassroots non-profit organization, providing crisis hotline coverage, emergency shelter, peer-based counseling, court advocacy, hospital accompaniment and other crisis intervention services.
Kalliopi Mingeirou, Chief of the Ending Violence against Women Section, UN Women
Kalliopi Mingeirou is currently the Chief of the Ending Violence against Women Section at UN-Women in New York. She has been leading global initiatives, including diverse interagency initiatives, on prevention of and responses to violence against women and girls in public and private spaces. She is a lawyer by training and holds an LL.M. on public international law. Prior to joining UN-Women, Ms. Mingeirou worked as a lawyer in Greece, and at international level, she worked for UN agencies, as well as INGOs, in the areas of human rights, women’s human rights and refugee protection in several countries both in development and humanitarian settings.
Leila Rasskeh Milani, Program Director for Global Policy and Advocacy, Futures Without Violence
Leila Rasskeh Milani is the Program Director for Global Policy and Advocacy for Futures Without Violence, where she leads their work on global violence prevention, with a focus on women and children. In this capacity, she is instrumental in developing innovative policy solutions, driving advocacy efforts, securing resources, and influencing the agendas of national coalitions such as Girls Not Brides, Coalition for Adolescent Girls, the US Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace, and Security, End Violence Against Children Task Force, and the Coalition to End Violence Against Women and Girls Globally, for which she serves on the executive committee.
Prakriti Bhattarai, UNICEF Youth Advocate
Prakriti Bhattarai is a current UNICEF Youth Advocate from Nepal and chairperson of Political Literacy for Women. Political Literacy for Women (PLfW) aims to increase Nepali women’s knowledge of politics and is designed to provide learning, networking, and leading spaces for Nepali women. She does not associate herself with any political party and works as an independent entity alongside her team. She is a lead campaigner of ‘Ajhai Kati Sahane’ – a national movement designed to advocate against increasing instances of rape. Ms. Bhattarai participated in one of the U.S. government consultations with civil society to inform the content and development of the 2022 update to the Global GBV Strategy.