Robert F. Drinan, S.J., Chair in Human Rights
Georgetown Law established the Robert F. Drinan, S.J., Chair in Human Rights in 2006. This position is designed to bring distinguished human rights practitioners to Georgetown Law to teach and engage with our community.
Soledad García Muñoz
García Muñoz has a distinguished record of research, education, and advocacy on the rights of women, LGBTQ people, Afro descendent and indigenous communities, as well as extensive human rights experience in the European, Inter-American and United Nations systems. In 2017, she was elected as the first ever Special Rapporteur on Economic, Social, Cultural, and Environmental Rights for the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (REDESCA), a position she held for six years. During those years, she was also part of the Working Group of the Protocol of San Salvador of the Organization of American States, which she chaired between 2021 and 2023. Her creative and energetic advocacy during that inaugural tenure put these rights and issues, such as business and human rights and the climate emergency, at the center of the agenda of the American States and the Inter-American System to advance justice and equality for the most vulnerable and historically marginalized people throughout the Americas.
Prior to her appointment as Special Rapporteur on Economic, Social, Cultural and Environmental Rights (ESCER), García Muñoz led the South America regional office of the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights (IIHR), an international academic institution established jointly by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Republic of Costa Rica. Based in Montevideo, Uruguay, García Muñoz managed numerous human rights education and promotion projects in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay. Previously, as coordinator of IIHR’s CEDAW-Argentina project, García Muñoz’s efforts were key to securing Argentina’s ratification of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and in broadly promoting women’s rights in the country.
“I am truly honored by the opportunity to join the distinguished faculty at Georgetown Law and to be part of the exciting work of the Human Rights Institute following the legacy of Professor Drinan and those who preceded me in this position,” said García Muñoz. “I look forward to my interactions with Georgetown students and to using my tenure as Drinan Chair to strengthen Georgetown Law’s academic agenda in relation to economic, social, cultural and environmental rights, reaffirming the universality and indivisibility of all human rights. I will also actively work to build bridges between Georgetown Law and the Inter-American system.”
As Drinan Chair, García Muñoz will teach a course in the spring semester focusing on economic, social, cultural and environmental rights with a special focus on climate emergency and business and human rights, serve as a mentor to students and participate in the Human Rights Institute’s programming. She will deliver the annual Drinan Lecture on Human Rights on Tuesday, March 5, 2024.
Past Drinan Chairs
Former Registrar for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon
Former Executive Director of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty
Former President and CEO of Human Rights First
Former UN Special Representative on Human Rights Defenders and former President of the World Organisation Against Torture
Former Ambassador-at-Large for Global Criminal Justice. Distinguished Fellow at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Center for the Prevention of Genocide and The Hague Institute for Global Justice.
Former UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants and Full Professor at the McGill University Faculty of Law
Founder and Executive Director of Disability Rights International
Former UN Human Rights and Political Affairs Officer; Senior Advisor at TrustWorks Global
Former UN Independent Expert on Minority Issues
President Emeritus, Open Society Foundations
Justice, African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights
Former Judge, International Court of Justice