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Rwandan Women Rising

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Date and time
Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Rwanda today ranks highest in the world in terms of women parliamentarians (64 percent); almost half the judges and president’s cabinet are female. In a merely two-decade span, Rwanda has forged progressive health, education, gender equity, and environmental policies along an extraordinary path that can serve as a model for the rest of the world. Longtime advocate for gender parity Swanee Hunt will speak about her experiences in Rwanda from her new book _Rwandan Women Rising._ Hunt interviewed more than 90 women (and men) who were key to rebuilding their country as they worked for peace after the genocide in 1994.

**Swanee Hunt’s** mission is to achieve gender parity, especially as a means to end war and rebuild societies, as well as to alleviate poverty and other human suffering. At Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Hunt is the Eleanor Roosevelt Lecturer in Public Policy. In 1997, she founded the Women and Public Policy Program, a research center concerned with domestic and foreign policy, which she directed for more than a decade. She teaches “Inclusive Security,” exploring how women are systematically excluded from peace processes, the impact, and the policy steps needed to rectify the problem. From 1993 to 1997, Hunt served as ambassador to Austria, where she hosted negotiations and international symposia focused on stabilizing the neighboring Balkan states. Prior to that, she made her mark as a civic leader and philanthropist in Denver, where she led initiatives on public education, affordable housing, women’s empowerment, and mental health services for two mayors and the governor. In 2007, Ambassador Hunt was inducted into the** National Women’s Hall of Fame**. She is a widely published columnist and has authored three books: the award-winning \_This Was Not Our War: Bosnian Women Reclaiming the Peace\_, her memoir, \_Half-Life of a Zealot,\_ and \_Rwandan Women Rising\_.