The Global Commission on Drug Policy invites journalists, civil society organizations and interested individuals to participate in our UNGASS press conference to be held in New York City on April 21. The press conference will evaluate the advances made during the UNGASS process, while providing recommendations for the path beyond 2016 in drug policy reform. Speakers include former Presidents, UN officials and high-level entrepreneurs. We look forward to having you join us!
Louise Arbour took over as President and CEO of the International Crisis Group in July 2009. From 2004 to 2008 she served as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. A Canadian national, in December 1987 she was appointed to the Supreme Court of Ontario, and in 1990 to the Court of Appeal for Ontario. In 1995, she served as Commissioner of an inquiry into the Prison for Women in Kingston, Ontario.
In 1996, Arbour was appointed by the Security Council of the United Nations as Chief Prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and for Rwanda. After three years as Prosecutor, she resigned to take up an appointment to the Supreme Court of Canada.
In 2009, she joined the Advisory Board for the 2011 World Bank Development Report; in 2010, the Global Commission on Elections, Democracy and Security; and in April 2011, the Global Commission on Drug Policy.
Pavel Bém (Prague, 18 July 1963) is a Czech politician, Member of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic since 2010 and former Mayor of the City of Prague. He is also a Member of The National Drug Commission – Office of the Government of the Czech Republic in Cabinet of Prime Minister.
Bém studied medicine at Charles University in Prague, specializing in psychiatry and subsequently devoting most of his career in medicine to drug abuse prevention and treatment. Since 1998 active as a politician (Civic Democratic Party), started as Mayor of Prague 6 District, followed by two terms of office as Mayor of the City of Prague. His other interests include mountaineering, scuba diving and piano playing.
Richard Branson is founder and chairman of the UK-based Virgin Group, Ltd., which includes international music megastores and companies in air travel, mobile communications, finance, retail, music, Internet, drinks, railroad, and hotels and leisure, with approximately 200 businesses and brands in more than 30 countries and revenues exceeding $7.2 billion. The award-winning Virgin Atlantic Airways, which he formed in 1984, is now the second largest British long-haul international airline. In addition to his business activities, Sir Richard is a trustee of several charities, including the Virgin Healthcare Foundation, a leading health care charity that has raised over Â£100 million.
Former Deputy Prime Minister of the UK and
UK Member of Parliament for Sheffield Hallam
Nick Clegg MP is a Liberal Democrat politician who served as Deputy Prime Minister in Britain’s first post war Coalition Government from 2010 to 2015 and as Leader of the Liberal Democrats from 2007 to 2015. He is the Member of Parliament for Sheffield Hallam, where he was first elected in 2005, and was previously a Member of the European Parliament.
Nick Clegg led his party into Government for the first time in its modern history in a coalition with the Conservatives. As Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg occupied the second highest office in the country at a time when the United Kingdom was recovering from a deep recession following the banking crisis of 2008. Despite the hugely controversial decisions needed to restore stability to the public finances, Nick Clegg successfully maintained his party’s support for a full five-year term of office.
Former President of Switzerland and Minister of Home Affairs
Ruth Dreifuss (born in 1940, single) studied in Geneva where she received a degree in economics with special focus on econometrics in 1971. In her varied professional career she served as hotel secretary, editor of the weekly journal Coopération, social worker, assistant at the Geneva University. She then worked nine years for the Swiss Agency for Development and Humanitarian Aid (Federal Department of Foreign Affairs) and became in 1981 Secretary of the Swiss Labour Union Federation. In that capacity, she was responsible for sectors including social insurance, labour law, gender equality and relations with the International Labour Organization (ILO).
Ruth Dreifuss was elected Federal Councillor (Member of the Swiss government) in 1993 by the Federal Assembly (Parliament), and was re-elected twice. From 1993 to her resignation in 2002 she was Head of the Federal Department of Home Affairs, the ministry responsible for public health, social insurance, scientific research, higher education, gender equality and culture, so as environment until 1997. During the year 1999, Ruth Dreifuss was President of the Swiss Confederation.
Former Colombian President César Gaviria – known in Latin America as a conflict mediator, advocate of democracy, staunch supporter of regional integration and defender of human rights – was first elected OAS Secretary General in 1994 and re-elected for a second term in 1999.
Through his strategy for a “New Vision of the OAS,” César Gaviria fostered profound institutional changes that reinvigorated the inter-American agenda and prepared the Organization to meet the challenges the region faces today. During Gaviria’s tenure, the OAS intensified efforts to improve hemispheric security and combat terrorism, drugs and corruption. It became a key player in the Summit of the Americas process, and now serves as its technical secretariat and institutional memory. The Organization has also advanced the concept of integral solidarity and has reformed its technical cooperation programs.
Michel D. Kazatchkine became Executive Director of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in April 2007. The Global Fund, based in Geneva, Switzerland, is the world's leading multilateral financier of programs for the three diseases and one of the major financiers of health systems strengthening.
Dr. Kazatchkine has spent the past 25 years fighting AIDS as a leading physician, researcher, administrator, advocate, policy maker, and diplomat.
Paul Volcker became president on August 1, 1975, at the age of 47. As president, he also served as vice chairman of the FOMC. Previously he served in a variety of positions with the Treasury, Chase Manhattan Bank, and the New York Fed.
Mr. Volcker was born on September 1927 in Cape May, New Jersey. He earned a bachelor of arts degree, summa cum laude, from Princeton in 1949, and a master of arts degree in political economy and government from the Harvard University Graduate School of Public Administration in 1951. From 1951 to 1952, he was Rotary Foundation Fellow at the London School of Economics.
Mr. Volcker’s experience with the New York Fed began when he worked as a research assistant in the research department during the summers of 1949 and 1950. He returned to the New York Fed as an economist in the research department in 1952, and became a special assistant in the securities department in 1955. Two years later, he resigned to become a financial economist at Chase Manhattan Bank.
In 1962, he joined the Treasury as Director of the Office of Financial Analysis, and in 1963 he was appointed Deputy Undersecretary for Monetary Affairs. In 1965, he rejoined Chase Manhattan as vice president and director of forward planning.
From 1969 to 1974, he was Undersecretary of the Treasury for Monetary Affairs. His five-and-a-half-year tenure covered a period of rapid change in international and domestic financial affairs.
After leaving the Treasury, Mr. Volcker became senior fellow at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University for the 1974-75 academic year.
He was named chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System by President Carter, and was sworn in on August 6, 1979. He served until August 11, 1987.
Ernesto Zedillo is the Frederick Iseman '74 director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization; professor in the field of international economics and politics; professor of international and area studies; and adjunct professor of forestry and environmental studies at Yale University. He served as president of Mexico from 1994-2000. Mr. Zedillo serves on the board of directors of Alcoa and Procter & Gamble, and on the international advisory boards of JPMorgan Chase, Rolls Royce, Credit Suisse, BP, the Coca-Cola Company, and Ace. Currently he is chairman of board of the Global Development Network, based in New Delhi, and member of the foundation board of the World Economic Forum; the Trilateral Commission; the international advisory board of the Council on Foreign Relations; the G30; the board of directors of the Institute for International Economics; the board of trustees of the International Crisis Group; and the board of directors of the Inter-American Dialogue.