Jacqueline O’Neill Appointed Canada’s First Ambassador for Women, Peace and Security
By Miki Jacevic, Vice Chair of Inclusive Security
I’m thrilled to share with you that Inclusive Security’s former president, Jacqui O’Neill, is Canada’s first-ever Ambassador for Women, Peace and Security!
I met Jacqui in 2006 when she began her work at Inclusive Security. She originated our focus on women in the security sector and oversaw the development of the security sector reform guide and curriculum. In addition, she led our program in Sudan and South Sudan that brought together women leaders from both sides of the border to advocate for the needs of everyday people in local communities suffering from the conflict.
As president, she was part of the management team that grew Inclusive Security to an organization that affected peace processes in 15+ countries, contributed significant research and data about women’s contributions to peace and security, and helped lead the charge for the US national action plan on women, peace, and security and the Women, Peace, and Security Act.
Jacqui has supported the creation of national strategies and policy frameworks for more than 30 countries, including Canada, to advance women’s full participation in conflict prevention and resolution. She is a key leader in establishing the field of women, peace, and security and moving it from a nascent concept to official government policy.
Jacqui’s experience working in places like Colombia, South Sudan, and Pakistan has grounded her in the reality that women and all those affected by conflict must be part of the solutions. Equally at ease working with women in refugee camps as she is in navigating government halls, I can think of no better person to carry forward the Canadian government’s vision and implementation of women’s full and equal participation in all matters related to peace and security.
Throughout the years working together to build this concept of inclusive security, we became close friends. Her quick wit and humor opened doors in back channel advocacy. I’ve seen her sit with women celebrating personal victories and grieve with those experiencing unspeakable loss from violent conflict. I’ve seen her go toe-to-toe with powerful leaders, winning over hearts and minds to understand that women’s participation is not just about rights, but about having a better and safer future for everyone!
In short, to know Jacqui is to love her.
Please join me in congratulating Jacqui. Click here to leave a message for her.
Jacqui, we wish you the best, and we hope your new office is dog friendly!
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