FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
GENEVA, Switzerland – Justice Rapid Response (JRR) is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Nina Suomalainen to the role of JRR Executive Director.
Ms. Suomalainen of Finland is an international crisis management and institutional development professional with 25 years of experience working in international organizations, including the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), United Nations Development Program, and the European Union, as well as with civil society. For the past several years, Ms. Suomalainen held senior positions within the OSCE, most recently as the Head of the OSCE Mission to Skopje from 2015 to April 2018. From 2012 to 2015 she served as Deputy Head of the OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina, based in Sarajevo.
“It is a great honor for me to join Justice Rapid Response,” said Ms. Suomalainen. “I am excited to help JRR deliver on its mission to provide professional expertise for investigations into international crimes and documentation of serious human rights abuses.”
Ms. Suomalainen was selected by the Executive Board of JRR after an extensive search process. She is seconded by the Government of Finland.
“On behalf of the Executive Board of JRR, we extend a warm welcome to Ms. Suomalainen,” said Ambassador Mirjam Blaak, Chair of the JRR Executive Board. “With her come many years of demonstrated leadership experience and an outstanding commitment to human rights. We have the utmost trust that JRR will be in good hands.”
Ms. Suomalainen holds expertise in institutional development, human rights protection and promotion, and crisis management. She has extensive experience working in a wide variety of conflict-affected countries in south-eastern Europe, including Bosnia and Herzegovina and other countries in the OSCE region. She has also worked in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Haiti, Rwanda, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and the Palestinian Territories. From 2005 to 2010 Ms. Suomalainen worked as a senior adviser to Finn Church Aid, the largest development NGO in Finland.
“Over the course of my career, I have seen first-hand the profound impact that justice has on a society affected by serious crimes, such as genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity,” said Ms. Suomalainen. “When those populations trust that the rule of law can and will work—through credible investigations, conducted at the highest standard—only then will they be truly able to lay the foundations for peace. JRR experts have shown that they contribute directly to this trust.”
Ms. Suomalainen formally assumes the role of JRR Executive Director on 7 May 2018, and will be based at JRR headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. She is the successor to Mr. Andras Vamos-Goldman, co-founder of JRR, who served as Executive Director until 7 May 2018.
Hannah Dunphy, Communications and External Relations Officer
Tel: +1 347-725-6947