AAUW at the United Nations

As a nongovernmental organization, AAUW has special consultative status with the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs. AAUW’s representatives attend briefings, organize events, and participate in coalitions to take action on issues that impact girls and women: access to education and training, human trafficking, women’s economic security and ending the gender pay gap, and increasing girls’ and women’s opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

AAUW advocates for UN policies that include women and girls, signs on to relevant documents, submits statements and research, and hosts parallel events for the Commission on the Status of Women.

Our Representatives at the United Nations

When AAUW’s UN representatives walk through those impressive assembly halls, they’re at work — attending briefings, organizing events, and advocating in coalitions that take action for girls and women.

AAUW relies on a board-appointed UN main representative to facilitate engagement at the United Nations. UN youth representatives, national staff, and designated members also actively participate and contribute to this important work.

AAUW at the 61st Commission on the Status of Women

Gloria L. Blackwell, AAUW U.N. Main Representative and AAUW Vice President of Fellowships, Grants, and Global Programs

Gloria L. Blackwell, AAUW UN Main Representative and AAUW Vice President of Fellowships, Grants, and Global Programs

Gloria L. Blackwell, AAUW Senior Vice President of Fellowships and Programs and AAUW UN Main Representative

As the senior vice president of fellowships and programs, Gloria is responsible for designing and implementing initiatives to expand women’s and girls’ opportunities in nontraditional spaces through leadership and oversight of $4 million in fellowships and grant programs and designing and executing a comprehensive set of programs to reshape girls’ and women’s experiences in educational and career settings.

Before joining AAUW in 2004 she was the director of Africa education programs at the Institute of International Education (IIE) managing multiple girls’ education programs in sub-Saharan Africa. She also managed fellowships programs during her decade at IIE and has held positions as a Peace Corps staff member and volunteer in Africa.

She holds a master’s degree in education and human development from George Washington University, a bachelor’s degree in international affairs from Georgetown University, and studied at the American University of Paris. Gloria is committed to supporting opportunities and advancement for women and girls globally. Follow @AAUWGloriaB on Twitter.

Rena Zhu and Veronica McKinny, AAUW Youth Representatives

Rena Zhu (left), former AAUW youth representative, and Veronica McKinny (right), AAUW youth representative

Veronica McKinny, AAUW Youth Representative

Veronica McKinny is a junior at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, pursuing a double major in physics and cognitive science. She is the president of Lehigh’s Society of Physics. McKinny also serves as a teaching assistant for the department of computer science. She is an active member of her collegiate community, serving as a Camp Hawk counselor for first-year students and equipment manager for Lehigh University’s marching band.

Our United Nations Affiliations

The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)

AAUW has special consultative status with ECOSOC, which initiates reports, makes recommendations, and promotes respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Commission on the Status of Women

The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) is the UN body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. It is key in promoting women’s rights, providing data on the status of women’s lives around the world, and implementing strategies on gender equality and the empowerment of women. Every year AAUW attends this two-week convening of member states, UN entities, and ECOSOC-accredited nongovernmental organizations from all regions of the world.

NGO Commission on the Status of Women

For two weeks in March, the UN turns the focus of the United Nations toward gender-related issues worldwide. At the same time, civil society is given the opportunity to participate in the NGO (nongovernmental organization) CSW Forum. Joining thousands of women representing more than 100 nations, AAUW UN representatives, staff, and members present AAUW research and programs that help girls and women advance throughout the world.

Department of Public Information

The Department of Public Information (DPI) was established in 1946 to promote global awareness and understanding of the work of the United Nations. DPI undertakes this goal through radio, television, print, the internet, video conferencing, and other media tools.

UN Women

This department works to advance the global agenda on women’s rights, gender equality, and the empowerment of women and to ensure that women’s voices are heard in international policy arenas.

The Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO)

CoNGO is an independent, international, and nonprofit membership association of nongovernmental organizations whose objective is to secure, safeguard, and facilitate the participation and consultative relationships of NGOs in United Nations decision making, conferences, and debates.

Working Groups

AAUW participates in working groups at the United Nations, including the Working Group on Girls.