Adrienne Germain, president of the International Women’s Health Coalition, has worked for almost 35 years to promote women’s opportunities, health and rights in developing countries. She is a visionary who helped revolutionize the way the world views population policy by making the health and rights of women central.
Under Germain’s leadership, IWHC has created international policy innovations, led global advocacy for sexual and reproductive rights and health, and helped build local organizations in countries of Africa, Asia and Latin America. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the editorial board of Reproductive Health Matters, the Human Rights Watch Women’s Division Advisory Committee and the International Health Programs Monitoring and Evaluation Advisory Group.
A skilled strategist and negotiator, Germain served on U.S. government delegations to world conferences on population, women and development from 1993 to 2000, and again in 2009 and 2010. Prior to IWHC, she worked at the Population Council and the Ford Foundation in New York City. While at Ford, she designed and managed programs that supported women’s work and credit opportunities and advanced girls’ and women’s health and educational needs in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. As Ford’s youngest -- and first woman -- country representative, Germain lived in Bangladesh for four years and directed the foundation’s programs in agriculture, rural employment, international economics, women’s rights, arts and culture, and reproductive health.
Germain served on the Millennium Project Task Force on Child Mortality and Maternal Health, the boards of Gender and Rights (Denmark) and BRAC-USA, and the Programme Committee of the 2008 Global Ministerial Forum on Research for Health. She has published extensively on women’s health and rights, population, development and U.S. foreign policy and was named a Woman of Distinction by the Girl Scouts of Greater New York in October 2005. She studied sociology and demography at Wellesley College and the University of California, Berkeley.