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Indian-American to head Robert F Kennedy Memorial Centre

April 28, 2007 18:57 IST

Indian-American Monika Kalra Varma has been appointed the new director of the Robert F Kennedy Memorial Centre for Human Rights.

A human rights lawyer, Varma currently serves as acting director of the RFK Centre, having worked with the organisation for over four years, previously serving as programme director.

"We are fortunate to have Monika at the helm of the centre. She has played a pivotal role in transforming cutting edge economic and social rights concepts into some of our most successful and dynamic programmes," executive director of the memorial Lynn Delaney said.

"Under Monika's leadership, we will continue to make an even greater impact on the movement for human rights," Delaney added.

Varma, who previously worked for the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in Hague, Netherlands, as a legal officer, will be overseeing the centre's day-to-day operations and programmatic work.

"It is truly an honour to be able to lead the centre's efforts to contribute to our partners' social movements," Varma said in a statement.

She will work with staff, board members, the Kennedy family, and volunteers to construct advocacy programmes, which provide ongoing support to the centre's partners, the RFK Human Rights Award winners.

Varma will also oversee the annual Robert F Kennedy Human Rights Awards honouring courageous grassroots human rights defenders.

She is also serving on the editorial board of the Harvard-based Frangois-Xavier Bagnoud's Health and Human Rights journal.

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