Key Note Speakers

Leymah Gbowee


Nobel Peace Laureate; Founder & President; Gbowee Peace Foundation

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Leymah Gbowee won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for her work leading a women’s peace movement that brought an end to the Second Liberian Civil War. She travels the world speaking to audiences about gender-based violence and women-led peacebuilding in conflict countries.

She is the founder and president of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa and a co-founder of the Women Peace and Security Network Africa. In 2007, Leymah earned a Master’s degree in Conflict Transformation from Eastern Mennonite University in the United States. Meanwhile, she continued to build women’s agency in fighting for sustainable peace. She is a founding member and former coordinator for Women in Peacebuilding/West African Network for Peacebuilding (WIPNET/WANEP). She also co-founded the Women Peace and Security Network Africa (WIPSEN-Africa) to promote cross-national peace-building efforts and transform women’s participation as victims in the crucible of war to mobilized armies for peace.

Ever-focused on sustaining peace, Leymah continued working on behalf of grassroots efforts in her leadership positions. She served as a member of both the African Feminist Forum and the African Women’s Leadership Network on Sexual and Reproductive Rights, and as a commissioner-designate for the Liberia Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Through these positions, Leymah addressed the particular vulnerability of women and children in war-torn societies. In her current position as President of Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa, Leymah pushes for greater inclusion of women as leaders and agents of change in Africa.