Victor Madrigal-Borloz has been associated with the IRCT since he was invited to chair the 2001 Council Meeting as an independent counsel. He continued to volunteer his services in this role for over a decade until his appointment as Secretary-General in 2013. Since then he has led the Secretariat in facilitating the development of a new strategy by the membership, supervised its implementation and ensured its continuous review. Throughout this period the IRCT affirmed its vision of full enjoyment of the right to rehabilitation for all victims of torture and ill treatment. A member of the UN Subcommittee on the Prevention of Torture from 2013 to 2016, Mr Madrigal-Borloz was Rapporteur on Reprisals and oversaw a draft policy on the torture and ill-treatment of LGBTI persons. Prior to this he led technical work on numerous cases, reports and testimonies as Head of Litigation and Head of the Registry at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and has also worked at the Danish Institute for Human Rights (Copenhagen, Denmark) and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (San José, Costa Rica). In late 2017 the United Nations Human Rights Council appointed Mr. Madrigal-Borloz the Independent Expert on Violence and Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. In this capacity he assesses the implementation of international human rights law, raises awareness, engages in dialogue with all relevant stakeholders, and provides advisory services to help address violence and discrimination against LGBTI persons. Mr Madrigal-Borloz is a founding member of the Costa Rican Association of International Law (ACODI), a founding and current Board member of the International Justice Resource Centre (IJRC), and a founding and current Board member of Synergia-IDH.
Office of the Secretary-General
Gitte SørensenExecutive Assistant
As Executive Assistant, Ms Gitte Sørensen serves the IRCT Secretary-General and the governing bodies of the organisation. This includes responsibility for all logistics in relation to governance meetings and responsibility for managing meetings, travels and missions of the Secretary-General. Gitte has a Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Languages (English and French) and has been with the IRCT for 25 years. She previously worked in the EU Council of Ministers in Brussels and at the Canadian Embassy in Copenhagen.
Karen Faarbæk de Andrade LimaPartnerships Officer
As Partnerships Officer, Karen is responsible for developing partnerships with Governmental donors and Philanthropic foundations. Karen has a Bachelor’s Degree (Hons) in Anthropology & Sociology and a Master’s Degree in Social Anthropology of Development from the University of London. She has previously worked for organisations such as the World Bank and Danida.
Louise Obel BankPartnerships Associate
As Partnerships Associate Louise is working on the development of partnerships with Danish philanthropic foundations, the Danish Government's pool of funds as well as with the development of relations with individual donors. Louise holds a master degree in social anthropology from the University of Aarhus and has previously worked as a project manager at Excola, a local Brazilian NGO, the Foundation of HRH Crown princess Mary and UNICEF.
Roberto Cubero EspinalRegional Associate
As a Regional Associate based in Mexico City, Roberto is working on organising the logistics of the 2016 IRCTGeneral Assembly and Scientific Symposium. In his role he supports the organisational processes, strategy and policy from the Latin American perspective. Before joining the IRCT, Roberto worked at the General Attorney Office of Mexico, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Washington, DC, and the National Council of Science and Technology of Mexico. He has Bachelor’s Degree in Law and is certified on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law by the American University Washington College of Law
European Affairs Office
Mushegh YekmalyanHead of European Affairs
Mushegh is responsible for the overall functioning of the IRCT office in Brussels including support to membership and Secretariat in fundraising activities. He is also in charge of advocacy, policy and partnership work with EU institutions in Brussels as well as regional organisations including OSCE and Council of Europe in wider European context. A holder of a LLM degree in International Law, Mushegh has over 15 years of experience in development work and human rights. He previously worked for Penal Reform International (PRI) and as a human rights officer at various OSCE missions. He has also worked for the Open Society Foundation as a policy projects coordinator, conducting policy research and advocacy work aimed at supporting the HRDs
Melissa PaintouxEuropean Affairs Officer
As European Affairs Officer, Melissa advocates towards EU institutions for increased consideration of torture-related issues in EU internal and external policies. She is responsible for mobilising EU support and funding for IRCT projects and initiatives. In addition, she supports IRCT members in relation to their collaboration with EU institutions. Before joining the IRCT, Melissa worked in the refugee sector in France and the UK for several years. She managed projects and partnerships related to migrants' health and specialised in vulnerability and special needs issues. She also gained experience in public policy-making in Canada. Melissa holds a Master’s Degree in Conflict Analysis and Peacebuilding from Sciences Po Lille and a MSc in Global Migration studies from University College London.
Asger KjærumActing Director of Advocacy
Asger has the responsibility of shaping and implementing the IRCT's advocacy strategy to make the right to rehabilitation a reality for torture victims around the world. He oversees a broad spectrum of interventions to promote change in public policy and legislation and supports proper investigation and documentation of torture at the national, regional and international level. Asger is regularly invited to speak on issues related to the implementation of torture victims’ right to rehabilitation and the Istanbul Protocol, development of advocacy capacities and effective engagement with UN mechanisms. As a Danish jurist, he has nine years of experience working with implementation of human rights norms at the international and national level.
James LinIstanbul Protocol Programme Coordinator
James leads the design and implementation of the IRCT’s programme to share its health-based knowledge on investigation and documentation of torture and to promote full implementation of the Istanbul Protocol (IP). His work includes undertaking advocacy on law and policy, case interventions, capacity development and IP training. He also coordinates the activities of the Independent Forensic Expert Group. James has over a decade of field experience working in conflict and post-conflict areas. Prior to the IRCT, he was Head of the Bangkok Regional Office for Southeast Asia of FIDH and Country Director for ABA ROLI’s offices in Nepal and Thailand. He has also held several posts in Bosnia-Herzegovina with the OSCE mission. James is a licensed attorney with a Juris Doctorate and a BA in Anthropology.
Rachel TowersAdvocacy Advisor
As Advocacy Advisor, Rachel works with the IRCT’s regional advocacy strategy, promoting the right to rehabilitation as well as key thematic issues relevant to IRCT members, including forced migration and torture. She also develops input to policies on international human rights standards relevant to IRCT members and is the advocacy advisor for IRCT members participating in the EU-funded DFI project. Rachel qualified as a Solicitor in England and Wales and has a European Masters in human rights and democratisation. Before joining the IRCT she worked as a Lawyer for the UK Government on immigration and asylum cases.
Governance and Policy
Miriam ReventlowDirector of Governance and Policy
Miriam holds a masters’ degree in law and studied in Germany and South Africa. She has over a decade of experience in promotion of human rights and democracy. Before joining the IRCT she worked at the German Foreign Ministry, the German Red Cross and organisations in France and South Africa.
Margaret HansenMembership Liaison Officer
Margaret's responsibilities include mapping of member centres, processing of membership applications as well as grants management and coordination. Her previous experience includes administrative functions in UNICEF - both at Headquarters and Country Office levels. Margaret holds a MA (Ord) in French and Psychology and Diplomas in Business Administration
Daniela Jorge AyoubGovernance Associate
Daniela is responsible for supporting the logistical planning and organisation of the 2016 General Assembly and Scientific Symposium. She holds over five years of professional and academic experience within the NGO and Education sectors throughout the United States, Europe and the Middle East. Former positions consisted of project management, administration, as well as monitoring and evaluation work. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, a Master’s Degree in Management and is currently pursuing an MSc in Development and International Relations/Global Refugee Studies at Aalborg University in Copenhagen
Pablo GuerraStudent Assistant, Membership services
Pablo is responsible for providing support to the sub-grants and membership processes and contributes to donor reporting and knowledge management with input from grantee reports. He also supports the Secretariat with ad-hoc translations to and from Spanish and English, and responds to the needs of member centres in Latin America. Pablo holds a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering and is currently studying an MSc in Engineering Management at the Technical University of Denmark. Before joining the IRCT, he was volunteering for two years at the Board of European Students of Technology, where he worked on numerous projects.
Inge FrandsenFinance and Procurement Officer
As Finance and Procurement Officer, Inge is responsible for managing the financial reporting on IRCT projects and arranging flights for IRCT staff as well as IRCT members and other stakeholders participating in the organisation’s various project activities. Inge also manages IRCT procurements and other staff and admin related tasks. Inge has more than 25 years’ experience within accounting and administration in an international environment and holds a Certificate in Business Language from Copenhagen Business School.
Rudolf PodkrivackyIT Student Assistant
Rudolf supports the IRCT Secretariat with IT. His responsibilities include… He recently completed a Bachelor's Degree in Global Business Informatics and is currently studying a Master’s Degree in Bachelor's Degree in Global Business Informatics.
Leanne MacMillanDirector of Research Development
As the Director of Research Development, Leanne is responsible for managing the research to develop indicators for the right to rehabilitation, creating research relationships and introducing a system wide record system to use clinical data for human rights outputs. A trained refugee lawyer, Leanne has more than 20 years of senior management experience in the global human rights sector. Her previous roles include Manager of Amnesty International’s global refugee programme, Representative to the UN for the Secretariat of Amnesty International and Director of Policy and External Affairs. She has carried out research in over 20 countries including post-conflict and conflict zones. Leanne is currently undertaking studies towards a Masters in Science degree in public health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Nicola Anne WitcombeEditorial Assistant - Torture Journal
Nicola works on running and developing the Torture Journal, an academic interdisciplinary journal key to the torture movement. Her two main areas of expertise are language and law, being an experienced academic proof-reader with a Master’s Degree in English literature as well as having six years’ experience as a solicitor in immigration and employment in the UK. Nicola has been involved in a number of different NGOs, including being a Trustee for the UK-based charity Student Action for Refugees and a volunteer legal advisor on family reunification at the Danish Refugee Council for many years. She is currently studying towards a Masters in Law at the Open University.
Lisa HaagensenProject Coordinator - DFI Project
Lisa is responsible for coordinating the delivery of the EU-funded Data in the Fight Against Impunity (DFI) Project during its final phase of implementation. Her responsibilities include coordinating the ongoing development and modification of a unified clinical data collection system; coordinating and monitoring the outputs from over 30 member organizations in Asia, Europe, Latin America, MENA, and Sub-Saharan Africa; and ensuring project compliance to and accountability with EU regulations. She has five years of experience in the academic and non-profit sector in Johannesburg, London, Beijing, and Copenhagen, and holds a BA in Clinical Psychology, and an MSc in Political Science
Lisbet IlkjaerTaskforce Leader
Lisbet is leading IRCT’s temporary organisational taskforce established in 2017 in order to conduct an internal mid-term review of the strategic plan, facilitate an update of the strategy, develop a monitoring and evaluation system as well as work with the organisation on a funding and branding strategy. Lisbet is a jurist and has experience as public prosecutor, assistant lecturer in international law and more than 15 years of experience in human rights implementation in the areas of strategic planning, organisational development and capacity building with state institutions and civil society. Before joining the IRCT she worked as Department Director at the Danish Institute for Human Rights.
Alexandre Leal de FreitasFellow
Alex is part of the organisational taskforce of 2017, responsible for supporting the mid-term review of the strategic plan and building a project-based structure for the organisation. He is also leading the development and fundraising of a project for LGBTI victims of torture. Alex holds a Bachelor in Law and a Master‘s Degree in Human Rights and Democratisation. His professional experience includes working as a consultant for culture change in the private sector and the coordination of social projects with non-profit organisations.
Drouyn is currently studying for a Masters Degree in Global Development program at the University of Copenhagen, while working as an intern for the organisational taskforce, assisting with the internal midterm review, the update the strategy, and development of a monitoring & evaluation system. Drouyn has a Bachelor in Social Science with majors in Anthropology and Tropical Health and Society. Prior to his studies, Drouyn served several years in the military working in signals and communication.