LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia


The text 'speakers' and the logo of the conference

Find here bios of speakers at the Annual Conference 2019.

Dunja Mijatović

Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights

Dunja Mijatović was elected Commissioner for Human Rights on 25 January 2018 by the Parliamentary Assembly and took up her position on 1 April 2018. She is the fourth Commissioner, succeeding Nils Muižnieks (2012-2018), Thomas Hammarberg (2006-2012) and Alvaro Gil-Robles (1999-2006).

National of Bosnia and Herzegovina, she has been working to promote and protect human rights for the past two decades, thus acquiring extensive knowledge in the field of international monitoring, in particular as regards freedom of expression.

Prior to her appointment as Commissioner for Human Rights, she has served as OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media (2010-2017), Director of Broadcast of the Communications Regulatory Agency of Bosnia and Herzegovina (2001-2010), Chair of the European Platform of Regulatory Agencies (2007–2010) and of the Council of Europe's Group of Specialists on Freedom of Expression and Information in Times of Crisis (2005-2007).

Dunja Mijatović has regularly given lectures in national and international fora and has been awarded several human rights prizes. She has also being active in supporting NGO activities in the field of human rights education and asylum.

Alison Lowe

Chief Executive of Touchstone

Alison Lowe works as the Chief Executive of Touchstone a Mental Health Charity in Leeds and wider West Yorkshire.

Touchstone work with and for people that are affected by mental health problems and they specialise in working with people from different cultural backgrounds. Touchstone have received multiple awards for their work in inclusion and diversity, including the number 1 spot for UK Top 50 Most Inclusive Employers Award. They are a Stonewall Top 100 LGBT-Friendly Employer.

Before Alison started working with Touchstone she was a senior manager with a charity that supports people that have just come out of prison or are on bail to find housing. Alison has been involved in local government and was a councillor with the Labour Party.

Alison is involved with several local housing residents and tenants groups, is chair of Leeds Survivor-led Crisis Service and is a trustee at several charities. Over the years, Alison has been a well known campaigner on equal rights and chaired the Leeds Domestic Violence Forum. Alison Lowe holds an MA in Medieval Studies from Leeds University and a BA in History. She has 2 grown up children, Adam and Rosy and a grandchild called Mae.

Annelies Tukker

International policy officer at NNID Foundation

Annelies Tukker works as an international policy officer at NNID Foundation - an intersex led human rights organisation working on the equality, rights and visibility of intersex people.

Annelies works on the international cooperation of intersex organisations and supports these organisations in engaging with the United Nations. In addition, she actively promotes the visibility of intersex people.

In the Netherlands she has already given numerous presentations on intersex for (international) students, educators, employers/employees, and governments. Annelies graduated cum laude from the University of Utrecht with a research master's degree in history, specializing in socio-economic history and gender.

Dr Carol Shepherd

Secretary of the European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups

Dr Carol Shepherd is a Sociology Lecturer at Andover College and Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Winchester, UK. She is also Secretary of the European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups.

Her monograph, Bisexuality in the Western Christian Church: The Damage of Silence was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2018 and an autobiographical work, 119: My Life as a Bisexual Christian, published under a pseudonym in 2016 by Darton Longman & Todd.

Carol is currently working on a pastoral guide to bisexuality, Bi: The Way, to be published by Esuberanza Press (Netherlands) and has chapters forthcoming in Bisexuality, Spirituality & Identity (Routledge) and Bisexuality in Europe (also Routledge).

David Kakhaberi

Executive Director at Equality Movement, LGBT/AIDS activist, founder of HOROOM Nights

He has been involved in LGBT activism since 2007 and working on HIV/AIDS issues since 2014. His academic research has also been in this field.

In 2016 he, other activists and the team of BASSIANI created the first ever queer events series in Georgia. HOROOM Nights has become the biggest event in region which unites queer people.

Right now he works at Equality Movement which is a community center working on LGBTQ rights and against homophobia in Georgia.

Georgy Mamedov

Leftist and LGBT activist, curator and educator based in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

He currently works on the creation of transnational theoretical and activist platform Smychka focusing on dialectic materialist research and theorizing of body, gender and sexuality. In March 2018, he was elected chair of the board of the leading Central Asian LGBT organization Labrys Kyrgyzstan. From 2012 to 2018, he was co-artistic director of SHTAB, School of Theory and Activism, Bishkek.

In 2011 Mamedov co-curated (with Boris Chukhovich and Oksana Shatalova) Lingua Franca/Frank Tili, Central Asia Pavilion, 54th Venice Biennale, Venice. He co-authored and co-edited a number of publications including pioneer Russian language collection of feminist and queer sci-fi Utterly Other (Bishkek 2018), book Queer Communism is Ethics (Moscow 2016), and almanac Concepts of the Soviet in Central Asia (Bishkek 2016).

In 2015, Mamedov was awarded the French order of Arts and Letters.

Irena Moozova

Director for Equality and Union Citizenship, European Commission

Ms Irena Moozova is a Director at the European Commission for Equality and Union Citizenship in its department for Justice (DG JUST). She is a Czech national and joined the Commission in 2006 as Head of EU Representation in Prague.

Between May 2010 and April 2017 she was heading the Unit in charge of supporting the Commission Representations, in the Directorate-General for Communication (DG COMM). From 1991 till 2006 she had been working at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the Czech and Slovak/Czech Republic in various management positions, such as Head of the Department of Internal Administration (1993-1995), Deputy Director of the Department of the Human Rights (1999-2000) and as a team coordinator at the NATO Summit (2002). She had served as Czech Deputy Ambassador in Madrid (1995-1998), Deputy Ambassador of the Czech Republic to the OSCE in Vienna (2000-2004) and the Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the UNESCO in Paris (2004-2006).

Ms Moozova graduated at the Prague Charles University Faculty of Law and has completed postgraduate studies at Diplomatic Academy in Madrid. She is married and has two daughters.

Luz Elena Aranda and Tuisina Ymania Brown

ILGA World’s co-Secretaries General

Tuisina is a survivor of 40 years of institutionalised discrimination and spousal gender based violence, racial profiling, and trans violence and persecution. She lives her truth as a trans woman of colour from Polynesia, a human rights defender and a former corporate In-house Counsel. She practices in trade marks and intellectual property law, and holds a Masters of Intellectual Property Law and a Masters of Law. She has over 15 years of volunteer experience in international NGOs including: Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice; Global Interfaith Network on Sex, Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression; and International Trans Fund (New York, Co-Chair).

Luz studied Dramatic Literature at UNAM and Ethnology at ENAH, in addition to a technical career in Production in Media and Communication at the Ansel Adams Photography School. She is the General Director of Las Reinas Chulas Cabaret and Human Rights AC and Director of the International Cabaret Festival. She has worked in different organizations, including ProDesarrollo, Finanzas and Microempresa, Faces and Voices FDS, AC, and Oxfam Mexico.

Picture by Ben Buckland for ILGA World

Marija Golubeva

Member of the Latvian Parliament

Marija Golubeva is a member of the Latvian Parliament from the Liberal Development/ For! group. She holds the position of Deputy Secretary of the Saeima (Parliament)

Marija is a historian by education (PhD from the University of Cambridge, 1999) and has worked for most of her career as education policy researcher.

In 2013-2014, she was a senior consultant Brussels, leading research and consultancy projects in EU education policy and EU humanitarian aid policy for the European Commission. She was later Development Director at the think-tank PROVIDUS in Riga.

In June 2019, Marija with a group of other MPs proposed a Civil Partnership Law for Latvia, following up on a civil society initiative.

Mina Tolu

Co-spokesperson of FYEG - the Federation of Young European Greens

Mina Tolu is the co-spokesperson of FYEG - the Federation of Young European Greens. They have over 9 years experience in queer, feminist and green campaigning and activism.

In 2010 they founded We Are - University of Malta LGBTQI Youth & Student Organisation together with other students and this brought them close to the European LGBTQI movement and to IGLYO - the International LGBTQI Youth & Student Organisation. From 2014-2015 they served on the executive board and as co-chair of IGLYO. From 2015-2018 they worked at TGEU - Transgender Europe as communications officer.

Earlier this year Mina was a candidate with the Greens for the European Parliament, during their campaign they highlighted human rights, LGBTQI rights and feminist causes.

Currently, Mina is reading for an MA in Conflict Resolution and Mediterranean Security, and is a member of the executive of Alternattiva Demokratika - The Green Party in Malta. Mina loves cycling and dabbles in making rubber stamps, they are currently based in Malta. 

Olave Nduwanje

Jurist and queer, anti-racist, feminist activist

Olave Nduwanje is a jurist and queer, anti-racist, feminist activist. Olave fled from Burundi to the Netherlands in the early 1990s. Olave identifies as a Black, non-binary trans femme and addict in recovery.

She is an author, organizer, performer and speaker and was a 2017 parliamentary candidate in the Netherlands for Bij1, the first openly intersectional feminist party in Europe founded by a Black woman, Sylvana Simons.

Her interview series Olave Talks aims for highlighting knowledge production, strategies and tools developed by fellow and intersectional queer feminists.

Photo by Mikael Chukwuma Owunna#LimitlessAfricans 

Tomáš Petříček

Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic

Tomáš Petříček was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs on 16 October 2018.

Tomáš Petříček was Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, in charge of setting the overall policy and strategic goals of the Foreign Ministry. He previously served as Deputy Minister of Social Affairs of the Czech Republic. He is a member of the Czech Social Democratic Party.

Before joining the government, Mr Petříček was a senior advisor in the European Parliament and had a successful career in local government in the City of Prague. He also served as a lecturer in International Political Economy at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University.

He holds a PhD in International Relations and is fluent in English and conversational in French.