Bangalore and Delhi educated Gupta is considered a global leader on gender equity and women’s economic security
The US Senate has confirmed Dr Geeta Rao Gupta, an Indian-born global leader on gender equity and women’s economic security, as the Ambassador-at-Large for the Office of Global Women’s Issues in the State Department.
President Joe Biden’s pick for the role, Gupta was confirmed by 51 to 47 votes earlier this week. The State Department tweeted Friday it “looks forward to her efforts to promote women and girls’ rights through US foreign policy.”
Prior to her confirmation, Gupta worked closely with many UN agencies and programs. She was the former Executive Director of the 3D Program for Girls and Women at the UN Foundation.
Peter Yeo, Senior Vice President for the UN Foundation, said Gupta’s appointment underscores US commitment to gender equity at a time when women’s basic human rights and welfare are at risk around the world.
Gupta also co-convened an international initiative commissioned by UNAIDS to plan the global response to HIV/AIDS over the next 25 years, and was appointed by the Secretary-General to the role of Deputy Executive Director of Unicef.
“Dr Gupta is a deeply admired leader with extensive experience in the priority areas of the Office of Global Women’s issues, said Michelle Milford Morse, Vice President of the UN Foundation’s Girls and Women Strategy. This is a critical role for US global leadership, and Dr Gupta will fulfil it with great distinction.”
Read: Biden to name Geeta Rao Gupta as envoy for global women’s issues (November 15, 2021)
According to Gupta, there are many inequities and indignities that women suffer around the world, which hold them back from participating fully in the economy. They are subject to threats to their safety and have a fear of violence even on a daily basis, and that determines their mobility.
“In situations of conflict and emergencies and humanitarian crises they are particularly vulnerable, both in terms of their safety, but also in terms of their being able to look after their families and feed their families,” she said during her confirmation hearing last year.
With over a decade of experience on gender and development, Gupta has also served on an oversight committee for the World Health Organization’s Health Emergencies Programme, and co-chaired the World Banks’s Global Gender-based Violence Task Force.
In addition, she has served as the President of the International Center for Research on Women, and has numerous awards to her credit, including Harvard University’s 2006 Anne Roe Award and the 2007 Washington Business Journal’s “Women Who Mean Business” Award.
She earned a Phd in Social Psychology from the Bangalore University and an MPhil and MA from the University of Delhi in India.