Advisory Committee

The Equality Effect - Who we are

MARY EBERTS
Mary Eberts is an internationally-known litigator who has spent most of her career representing causes that promote equality in Canadian law. Mary is one of the founding mothers of the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF). She is a role model for a generation of Canadian women pursuing legal careers.

Mary is a graduate of both the Western and Harvard law schools, her academic achievements are surpassed only by her accomplishments in the field of law. Many of the legal briefs she has authored are so noteworthy that they have been published as illustrations of the best possible legal arguments. She has published numerous articles and six books in her career, includingEquality Rights Under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms – universally regarded as one of the finest compilations of constitutional theory ever published.

Mary taught law at the University of Toronto for six years before beginning a law practice in 1980. She returned to the University as an adjunct professor in 1987 to teach constitutional law part-time.  Mary is counsel for the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC).  Mary is currently completing her Ph.D. in law at the University of Toronto.

Mary’s many awards include the Law Society Medal from the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Governor General’s Gold Medal and honorary degrees from three Canadian universities. Mary acted as the Gordon Henderson Human Rights Chair at the University of Ottawa 2004-5.

ANNE W. IRERI
Anne earned her LL.B hons degree from Moi University in Kenya and has a post graduate diploma in Legal studies from the Kenya School of law. She is a member of the Kenyan Bar and has nine years post admission experience. Anne has also earned a post graduate diploma in human rights and gender equality from Uppsala University in Sweden. Anne has proceeded to be a legal consultant nationally, regionally and internationally. She has specialized in public interest litigation and legal protection of human rights having previously worked with FIDA Kenya as the Program coordinator for the access to justice program. Regionally, Anne has consulted with the African Union and the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre, Ghana on International Humanitarian Law. Internationally, Anne has worked at the INTERIGHTS, London on strategic litigation around women rights in Africa. Anne is also a recipient of the United States International Visitor Program on Women and Leadership. Anne has taken a research interest on state responsibility towards legal protection and security of vulnerable members of the society. She has served on various boards of organizations in Kenya which focus on empowerment of women and girls in the society. Anne was e²’s 160 Girls National Coordinator for 5 years. Anne is now the E.D. at FIDA-Kenya.

WINNIE KAMAU
Winifred Kamau holds a PhD from Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, Canada, as well as LLB and LLM from the University of Nairobi, Kenya.  She is currently teaching at the School of Law, University of Nairobi.  She is also an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya and has practised law in that country for a number of years.  Winifred’s research interests are in the areas of alternative dispute resolution, informal justice systems and women’s human rights.  She is currently involved in a collaborative research group on gender and judging.

NGEYI KAMYONGOLO
Ngeyi has an LLB (Hons) from the University of Malawi, an LLM from the University of London, and a PhD from Warwick University.  Ngeyi is a lecturer at the Faculty of Law, Chancellor College, University of Malawi. Ngeyi specialises in women’s social economic rights especially social security, labour law and gender.  Ngeyi has served as president of Women Lawyers Association of Malawi and vice president of the Malawi Law Society. Ngeyi has also sat as a commissioner on the Malawi Law Commission’s special commission on gender related law reform for three years. Ngeyi has served as a non executive director on a number of institutions’ boards including investment banks and NGOs. Ngeyi is currently focused on conducting multi-disciplinary research in collaboration with fellow academics and gender activists, publication and offering transformative based teaching to law students in Malawi and the SADC region. Ngeyi’s latest writing and publications are in gender and Social Security in SADC.

PATRICIA NYAUNDI
Patricia Nyaundi is the Secretary and CEO of the Kenyan Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC).  Before being appointed to the TJRC, Patricia was the Executive Director of the Federation of Women Lawyers-Kenya (FIDA-Kenya).  She is an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya with 17 years experience. She holds a Master of Laws in Human Rights law from the University of Cape town, South Africa. She has a passion for women’s’ right issues. Before joining FIDA Kenya, Patricia worked as a State Counsel in the Attorney General’s office and later as an advocate in private practice.  Prior to becoming Executive Director at FIDA, she served at FIDA for two years as a Senior Programme Officer both in the Access to Justice and the Transformative Justice Programmes.

CHERIE BLAIR, QC “160 Girls” HONORARY COUNSEL
The equality effect is thrilled that Cherie Blair, Q.C., has joined the equality effect’s “160 Girls” legal protection against defilement project as “Honorary Counsel”.  Cherie Blair is a leading barrister specializing in human rights law and public law, and a staunch supporter of women’s rights.  Cherie brings a wealth of human rights experience and litigation expertise to the “160 Girls” project.  Cherie will provide advice and guidance on the development of the “160 Girls” initiative.  Cherie’s commitment to achieving justice for girls in Kenya is clear: “The sexual violence experienced by girls in Kenya is beyond appalling; it certainly cannot be tolerated and must stop.  The law must be enforced”.  The equality effect is honoured to be working with Cherie Blair, and grateful for her endorsement of this landmark human rights initiative.  For more information about Cherie Blair, please visit: http://www.cherieblair.org/

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