The Advisory Board provides technical and critical analysis of the Division's activities to ensure that the quality standards adopted in compliance with the UNITAR mandate and UN guidelines are respected and well-integrated in everything we do.

UNITAR draws on the vast experience and knowledge of the Advisory Board members in order to ensure that the Division remains on the cutting edge of offering training, technical assistance and knowledge sharing opportunities aimed at strengthening the capacities of government authorities and policy makers, to develop and implement strategies towards social inclusion.

The UNITAR Division for People is privileged to have the expertise of the following individuals on the Advisory Board:

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Dr. Jaime V. Altamirano

Dr. Jaime V. Altamirano

US Centers for Disease Control, Former Associate Director of Science (OADS)

Jaime V. Altamirano, MD,. MPH. O.P., hails from Cuenca, Ecuador and has years of experience in medicine and surgery, as well as public health. He is a qualified Doctor in Medicine and Surgery from the University of Cuenca in Ecuador, and also holds a Master in Public Health degree from the University of Texas and a Post Doctorate Fellowship in Epidemiology from the University of Michigan.  

He has been a Medical Epidemiologist for the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in the Division of HIV Prevention within the Capacity Building Branch for over two decades, and has also served as an Epidemiologist for the Michigan Health Department. Bridging practice and education, he was the Coordinator of Health Education Programs for the City of Houston for a period of two years.  

Dr. Altamirano has been committed to developing capacities in different sectors for the Latin American Community. He is the Founder of Casa de la Cultura Hispana Americana (CCHA), and served as the organization’s President for five years. He has also served as the Founder-Executive Director of the Ecuadorian American Chamber of Commerce for a period of 2 years, and was the Founder and Program Director of Latin Steps Services (Latin America Humanitarian assistance) for a decade and a half. He was also a Co-Founder and Program Director, for three years, of “MEREPA Inc.” which provides humanitarian assistance to Africa.  

Dr. Altamirano is also a prolific writer. He has authored several articles and publications on medicine and public health, including the ‘Social Behavior Modification Model’ which has been applied to HIV prevention practices.He is also a renowned author of many faith-based books, like “Those Angels Called Humans”.

Ms. Catalina Devandas

Ms. Catalina Devandas

UN Special Rapporteur on Disabilities, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

Ms. Catalina Devandas Aguilar of Costa Rica is a lawyer by training and a human rights advocate. She took office as the first Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on 1 December 2014, following Human Rights Council resolution 35/6 establishing the new special procedures mandate.

She has worked extensively on disability rights and inclusive development for the past 20 years, including with the World Bank, the United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs, and international donor organizations that supported the work of organizations of persons with disabilities to promote the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Ms. Devandas Aguilar was previously part of the disability rights movement at national, regional and international level and continues to work closely with organizations of persons with disabilities.

Her work priorities as a Special Rapporteur include socioeconomic inclusion, the promotion of full citizenship of persons with disabilities, and embracing the understanding that persons with disabilities are part of human diversity. 

She is married, the mother of three daughters, and has spina bifida.

H.E. Amb. Taous Feroukhi

H.E. Amb. Taous Feroukhi

Ministry of Foreign Affairs , Algeria

Ambassador Taous Feroukhi is a career diplomat and has served as Permanent Representative of Algeria to the United Nations and other International Organizations in Vienna. She comes with a wealth of experience, assuming the Chairmanship of the Board of Governors of the IAEA and the Presidency of the Preparatory Commission for the CTBT. 

Ambassador Feroukhi joined the diplomatic service in 1976 and served from 1979-1981 as Secretary for Cultural and Educational Cooperation in Ottawa, Canada, and from 1981-1986 as First Secretary of the Embassy of Algeria in Madrid, Spain. Further, as First Counselor and Deputy Ambassador at the Permanent Mission of Algeria to the United Nations in Geneva between 1990 and 1994. 

In the Foreign Ministry in Algiers, she was responsible for Southern European countries (1986-1990). In 1994, she was appointed Deputy Director for Programmes and Specialized Agencies of the United Nations, followed by the position of Counselor to the Secretary of State for Co-operation and Maghrebian Affairs until 1999. Ambassador Feroukhi has held the position of "Chargée d´Etudes et de Synthese" in the Cabinet of the Minister for Foreign Affairs and "Chargée de Mission" in the Cabinet of the President of the Republic, in charge of a wide range of international issues.

She studied literature and political science at the University of Algiers, Algeria, and at the University of Madrid, Spain.

Mr. Gustavo Ghory

Mr. Gustavo Ghory

Chief Supply Chain Officer, Kimberly-Clark

Mr. Ghory is the Chief Supply Chain Officer and Senior Vice President and leads Kimberly-Clark’s global supply chain, with responsibility for procurement, manufacturing, logistics, quality, safety, and sustainability.

He has extensive supply chain experience in manufacturing, technology, planning and engineering within the consumer products goods industry and has a track record of creating business-relevant strategies, driving acceleration of bottom-line results, and delivering breakthrough operational excellence. Before joining Kimberly-Clark, Mr. Ghory had a 35-year career at P&G, where he held a number of key senior leadership positions and helped implement many of its global capabilities and Go-to-Market Product Supply organizations. A huge advocate of Industry 4.0, he left P&G in 2016 to become chairman and co-founder of SmarterChains, a technology platform that drives margin improvement by helping businesses leverage technology and data to become more agile, smart, and sustainable. 

Mr. Ghory holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the Universidad Simón Bolívar in Venezuela.

Ms. Srna Herzog-Reed

Ms. Srna Herzog-Reed

Head of Global Alcohol Policy, DIAGEO

As Head of Global Alcohol Policy, Srna is working with alcohol industry to promote moderation and reduce harmful drinking through a range of programmatic approaches. She is leading the implementation of Diageo flagship programmes globally, focusing on reducing underage drinking, drinking and driving and heavy episodic drinking. 

This also includes building capability of Diageo in-market teams to promote the ‘whole of society’ approaches to tackle misuse, build partnerships and engage stakeholders in promoting effective, evidence-based and fair policy approaches at a national and regional level.  

Srna serves on several committees of the International Alliance for Responsible Drinking and is a member of the BIAC Health Committee. In her previous role Srna was the subject matter expert on responsible marketing and self-regulation and in this role, she provided strategic and tactical guidance to Diageo global brand teams and in-market teams on marketing and regulation. Srna consulted on several industry self-regulatory codes, including DISCUS / Spirits Europe Marketing Standards and IARD Digital Guiding Principles, as part of the Producers Commitment to Reduce Harmful Drinking. 

H.E. Mr. Walid Khalid Abdullah Obeidat

H.E. Mr. Walid Khalid Abdullah Obeidat

Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Jordan to the United Nations in Geneva

He is a career diplomat, he joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1991 until today. 

Mr. Obeidat served from 2018 - 2019 as the Director of the Jordan Institute of Diplomacy. Prior to this position, he was Jordan’s Ambassador to Israel from 2012-2018, and the Director of the Legal Affairs Department from 2009-2012, as well as Private Bureau Director in 2005.

H.E. Mr. Obeidat served in the Embassies of Jordan in Cairo (2005-2007) and Paris (2007-2009), as well as in the Permanent Missions of Jordan to the United Nations in New York (1992- 1997) and Geneva (2000-2004). Additionally, he served in several departments within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as several national committees. 

Mr. Obeidat holds an LL.M. from London University (LSE) and a B.A. in Law from the University of Jordan. He is a member of the Jordanian Bar Association (non active member). 

Ambassador Obeidat speaks fluent Arabic, French and English. He is married and has two children.

H.E. Mr. Vaqif Sadiqov

H.E. Mr. Vaqif Sadiqov

Ambassador of Azerbaijan to the United Nations in Geneva

Mr. Vaqif Sadıqov was born on November 2, 1956 in Baku, Azerbaijan. After graduation from the Azerbaijani Institute of Foreign Languages, he got his MA degree in linguistics in 1978, and PhD degree in linguistics in 1986. Until the end of 1991, he worked as Assistant Professor in the Azerbaijani Institute of Foreign Languages.

At the beginning of 1992, Mr. Sadıqov joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan. In 1993-1995, Mr. Sadıqov was the head of the Political-military affairs division of the Foreign Ministry. In this period, Mr. Sadıqov was the member of the Azerbaijani delegations to international events on political-military, regional security and arms control issues, in particular, to the negotiations on the allocation of weapons and military equipment among the former USSR successor states.

In April 1995, Mr. Sadıqov was appointed Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to Austria, and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Office at Vienna, UNIDO, and OSCE. Since 1998, Ambassador Sadıqov also served as Permanent Representative to the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, and since 2001—to the International Atomic Energy Agency. In that period, Ambassador Sadıqov participated in the negotiations on the adapted CFE Treaty and development of new CSBMs, the OSCE Charter for European Security, and the UN Conventions against Transnational Organized Crime and against Corruption, attended many UN and OSCE events, including the 1996 and 1999 OSCE summits.

In May 2004, Ambassador Vaqif Sadıqov was appointed Deputy Foreign Minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan. Among other issues, his portfolio included relations of Azerbaijan with the UNESCO and the Organization of the Islamic Conference, and issues of multicultural and inter-civilisational dialogue.

In October 2010, Vaqif Sadıqov was appointed Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to Italy and Permanent Representative to the Rome-based UN Agencies (Food and Agriculture Organization, World Food Programme, International Fund for Agricultural Development). He was also accredited as Ambassador to Malta and San Marino.

On January 27, 2016, the President of Azerbaijan appointed Ambassador Vaqif Sadiqov Permanent Representative of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the United Nations Office and other international organizations in Geneva.

Vaqif Sadıqov is married and has two children.

Honorable Francisco de la Torre Prados

Honorable Francisco de la Torre Prados

Mayor of Malaga, Spain

He has been Mayor of Malaga since 2000, and was re-elected by an absolute majority on three consecutive occasions (2003, 2007 and 2011). He was also re-elected in 2015 and 2019. Mayor De La Torre Prados has been the Vice President of the Euro-Mediterranean Paternariado of Regional and Local Assembly (since 2010), and Vice President of the Euro-Mediterranean Association of Local and Regional Assembly. He has notable involvement in the development of Malaga as a pioneer city in Smart City and Sustainable Development. 

Mayor De La Torre Prados has Chaired the Finance Commission, as well as the Mobility and Accessibility Commission of the Spanish Federation of Municipalities and Provinces. He was elected Deputy for Malaga, from 1977 to 1982, and Senator for the Constituency of Malaga, from 2011 to 2014. He was National Deputy and Adviser in the first pre-autonomous Government of Andalusia. At the Spanish Congreso de los Diputados, he is a member of the Budget Committee and the Tourism, Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Committee.

In 2017. he was awarded by the French Republic, the Legion of Honor for his role in building cultural relations with France. In 2018, he received the Pushkin Medal from the Russian Federation for promoting cultural ties between Russia and Spain. In 2019, he was awarded the Distinction of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan for his outstanding contribution in the promotion of friendly relations between Japan and Spain.

Mayor De La Torre Prados graduated with a PhD in Agronomy from the University of Madrid, Regional Development Specialist at the University of Rennes (France), as well as a BA in Sociology from the University of Málaga.

He was born in Malaga in 1942. He is married and has four children.

Ms. Francoise Cardoso

Francoise Cardoso

Senior Health Advisor, Social Innovation Entrepreneur, Executive Board Member, Breastfeeding Counsellor, France

Francoise Cardoso (she/her) has a strong experience in the private sector for 20 years. She started working in digital (machine translation, text mining, natural language search engines) for 10 years before joining Danone in 2007 where she stayed for 15 years. She was fully involved in health-related topics such as maternal health, 1000 days of life as well as breastfeeding support. Her main contribution was to set up different programs related to health close to employees as well as kids and communities. She also co-led the Danone Global Parental Policy and its deployment close to more than 53 countries and she led the set-up of a worldwide breastfeeding program, opening more than 106 lactation rooms worldwide as well as building a network of 40 peer-to-peer coaches from 5 geographies. She is committed to the support of all families in the workplaces, mothers, partners, parents, carers and co-designed the Family Friendly Company certification together with a French association Ensemble pour l’Education de la Petite Enfance. She is committed to social inclusion and worked with the French government in reviewing the policies and protocols to eradicate the begging of Romanian families in France through business and social initiatives. She is a social entrepreneur, driven by innovation projects that prove their positive impact in the society.

As an academic background, she holds a first degree in medicine and life sciences as well as a MASTER in computational linguistics and a MASTER in communication and new technologies.

She is a mother of 4 kids from 3 to 14 years old and she has an experience of more than 10 years in breastfeeding.

Dr. May East

May East

Urbanist, sustainability educator, and social innovator

May East is a British/Brazilian urbanist, sustainability educator, and social innovator. Her work spans the fields of cultural geography, urban ecology, and women’s studies. A UNITAR Fellow, she holds a Master of Science in Spatial Planning with specialization in the rehabilitation of abandoned villages and a PhD in Architecture and Urban Planning on the topic “What if Women Designed the City?”. Her research interests, also, include nature-based solutions for urban planning and the use of regenerative design approaches for shaping eco-communities, mining cities, slums, transition and abandoned towns. Her passion is to co-develop Project-Based Learning trajectories supporting indigenous and migrant communities and their traditions to survive in rapidly changing environments while enhancing their opportunities to become the designers of their desired future.  She works with community-based organisations and intergovernmental agencies in policy guidance for SDGs implementation with projects seeking to strengthen climate resilience, food security and women’s empowerment. May was designated one of the 100 Global Sustainability Leaders by Showcase Asia and ABC Carbon three years in a row and Women of the Decade in Sustainability and Leadership by Women Economic Forum 2019.

Professor Sanson-Fisher

 Professor Sanson-Fisher

Professor, University of Newcastle, Australia

Distinguished Laureate Professor Sanson-Fisher leads the Health Behaviour Research Collaborative at the University of Newcastle, Australia. His past roles include the Director of CIFAL Newcastle (United Nations Institute for Training and Research). He has an outstanding global reputation as a leader in health behaviour research recognised by his award of Officer of the Order of Australia and Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences. His work is known for successfully combining behavioural and public health approaches to health promotion, health service evaluation and improvement, with a particular focus on vulnerable populations. His ability to conduct innovative and responsive research is demonstrated by his more than 600 peer-reviewed publications and over AUD$52 million in competitive research funding. L/Prof Sanson-Fisher is a member of the International Scientific Advisory Committee for Knowledge Translation Canada and a member of the faculty for knowledge translation for the National Institute of Health (USA) and National Cancer Institute (USA).