Melinda Holmes is advisor and coordinator of the Women’s Alliance for Security Leadership (WASL), spearheaded by the International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN) for Women’s Rights, Peace and Security. The alliance brings together existing women rights and peace practitioners, organizations, and networks actively engaged in preventing extremism and promoting peace, rights and pluralism, to enable their systematic and strategic collaboration.
From 2013 to 2016, Melinda worked with The Carter Center, where she advised on the engagement of religious and traditional beliefs, actors and communities in advancing peace and human rights, with a focus on women and girls. In 2012-2013, she conducted original anthropological research in Ghana examining the role of structural factors in Muslim leaders’ approaches to peace and violence and exploring the evolution of religious leadership norms.
In 2010 and 2011, Melinda lived in Egypt where she served as a refugee legal case worker amid the exacerbated human security crisis brought on by the 2011 uprising. Previously, Melinda worked as an educator at the Ecole d’Humanité in Switzerland where she developed and taught curricula on themes including nonviolence, conflict, globalization and civic activism, and served as a youth mentor.
Melinda graduated with a Master’s in international affairs from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, focusing on the gendered and religious dynamics of conflict and peacebuilding.
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