Amnesty International announces new Executive Director

Acting Executive Director Meg de Ronde has been appointed as the new Executive Director of Amnesty International Aotearoa New Zealand, making her not only the first woman to head the New Zealand section, but the youngest person to take on the job, and one of the youngest out of all our global sections. This comes at a time when the proportion of women in senior leadership roles in New Zealand is just 18%.*

Amnesty International is a movement of over eight million people around the world who protect human dignity and defend human rights. In New Zealand around 40,000 supporters work on a wide range of human rights issues of both national and international significance. Advocates promote and defend the rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international standards.

Board Chair Rosslyn Noonan says de Ronde comes with close to five years’ experience with the organisation and a track record of delivering.

“I’m very pleased to announce Meg de Ronde’s appointment. She is an inspiring woman and a very effective leader. She has represented the Aotearoa section in delegations to Canada, Greece, Spain, South Africa, Bangkok, UK and Italy. More recently, she’s been acting Executive Director for a period of five months alongside her role as Amnesty’s Campaign Director. Her ability to share a vision for a brighter, more compassionate future for all people has really shone through. We’re thrilled to be able to support such a strong internal candidate for this role.”

"Her ability to share a vision for a brighter, more compassionate future for all people has really shone through."

Amnesty International Aotearoa Board Chair Rosslyn Noonan

Noonan says de Ronde has led several crucial pieces of work for Amnesty New Zealand.

“Meg’s breadth of experience in grassroots volunteering, activism, politics and media, alongside her ability to bring teams together has enabled Amnesty International to reach aspirational campaign goals. Her work has led to several successes, including the organisation’s campaign to Double the Quota, to ensure that Community Sponsorship of Refugees prospers in New Zealand and securing the first J R McKenzie Trust grant for the organisation. I’m delighted to see what the Amnesty New Zealand team will do next with Meg’s support.”

De Ronde says it was an honour to be appointed.

“It’s a privilege to come to work every day and fight for justice, dignity and freedom for people around the world. I can’t wait to progress our domestic work and contribute to our global movement. Together we are powerful.”

Amnesty International Aotearoa Executive Director Meg de Ronde

She adds the organisation saw the need to innovate and be nimble in the current environment.

“We’re focused on issues of justice, community and sustainability in an uncertain world. Amnesty is well placed to address the challenges of our future whilst not forgetting the lessons of our past. I’m pleased to bring a fresh approach to the role but, having been part of the movement for close to five years, I also understand the decades of work Amnesty has carried out. I’m particularly proud to be the first woman leading the organisation in Aotearoa and am grateful to our members and volunteers around the country for their support.”

De Ronde officially steps into the role fulltime on November 13th.

*According to Grant Thornton International’s 2018 Women in Business Report