Mary Robinson, the former President of Ireland, will speak about climate change as a human rights issue at Mount Holyoke College on March 9. She will sign copies of her book, Everybody Matters: My Life Giving Voice, following her lecture, which is free and open to the public.
Ms. Robinson, who has spent most of her career as a human rights advocate, leads the Mary Robinson Foundation—Climate Justice, a center for thought leadership, education and advocacy on the struggle
to secure global justice for those people vulnerable to the impacts of
climate change who are usually forgotten—the poor, the disempowered,
and the marginalized across the world.
Ms. Robinson served as the first woman President of Ireland (1990-1997), is a former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (1997-2002), and founded and served as president of Realizing Rights: The Ethical Globalization Initiative (2002-2010).
As an academic, legislator, and barrister, she sought to use law as an instrument for social change, arguing landmark cases before the European Court of Human Rights and the European Court in Luxembourg as well as in the Irish courts. A committed European, she also served on expert European Community and Irish parliamentary committees.
In 1988 Mary Robinson and her husband founded the Irish Centre for European Law at Trinity College. Ten years later she was elected Chancellor of the University.
The recipient of numerous honors and awards throughout the world including the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama, Mary Robinson is a member of the Elders, former Chair of the Council of Women World Leaders, and a member of the Club of Madrid.
She serves on several boards including the European Climate Foundation and the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, and is a member of the Royal Irish Academy and the American Philosophical Society.
Mary Robinson's visit is sponsored by the Odyssey Bookshop; the following Mount Holyoke College entities: the Office of the President, McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives, Miller Worley Center for the Environment, and Weissman Center for Leadership and the Liberal Arts; and the Five Colleges Women's Studies Research Center.