Defending Women’s Human Rights: Achievements, Obstacles, and Opportunities for Empowerment

The Dash Conference provided an opportunity for speakers, panelists, attendees, and students to engage on a series of critically important topics impacting the fulfillment of women’s human rights, including rights of the girl child (ending female genital mutilation/cutting and child marriage), empowering and protecting women human rights defenders, and combating human trafficking of women and girls. HRH Princess Sarah Zeid, maternal and newborn health advocate, gave this year’s keynote address.

To view videos of the panels and keynote, please visit the 2018 video repository.

2018 Conference Program:

10:00 a.m.       Welcome Remarks 

Andrew Schoenholtz, Director, Human Rights Institute, and Professor from Practice, Georgetown Law

10:15 a.m.        Rights of the Girl Child: Ending the Practices of FGM and Child Marriage

Susan Deller-Ross (Moderator), Director, International Women’s Human Rights Clinic, Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center
Anne-Claire Blok
, Human Rights Advisor, Plan International
Susan Masling, Trial Attorney, Human Rights and Special Prosecutions, U.S. DOJ
Archi Pyati
, Chief of Policy, Tahirih Justice Center
Lyric Thompson
, Director of Policy & Advocacy, International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) and co-chair, Girls Not Brides USA advocacy coalition

11:45 a.m.        Lunch and Keynote Address           

William Treanor (Introduction), Dean of Georgetown Law

Her Royal Highness Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan,
Maternal and newborn health advocate

1:00 p.m.         Empowering and Protecting Women Human Rights Defenders

Ginna Anderson (Moderator), Senior Counsel, American Bar Association, Center for Human Rights Justice Defenders Program
Noorjahan Akbar, Human Rights Defender, Afghanistan
Binalakshmi Nepram, Human Rights Defender, Founder-Manipur Women Gun Survivors Network & IIE-SRF Visiting Scholar
Cynthia Rothschild, Scholar, Independent Activist & Consultant
Lisa VeneKlasen, Executive Director and Co-Founder, JASS (Just Associates)

2:30 p.m.         Coffee Break

2:45 p.m.         Combating Human Trafficking of Women and Girls

Denise Brennan (Moderator), Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology, Georgetown University
Brianna Gehring, Senior Program Director for SEA, International Justice Mission
John Cotton Richmond, Founding Director, Human Trafficking Institute
Melysa Sperber, Director of Policy & Government Relations, Humanity United
Karen Stauss, Senior Policy Counsel, Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit, U.S. Department of Justice

4:15 p.m.         Reception