Dr Kathleen Cravero-Kristoffersson has served as President of Oak Foundation since 2009. In this capacity she supports the Trustees of the Oak Foundation to address issues of global, social, and environmental concern, particularly where those issues have a major impact on the lives of the disadvantaged. She also provides leadership and guidance to Oak Foundation staff in each of the organisation’s six substantive programmes, including Environment, Child Abuse, Housing & Homelessness, International Human Rights, Issues Affecting Women, and Learning Differences.
Prior to joining the Oak Foundation, Ms Cravero worked for over two decades on a range of international development issues – from newly emerging democracies to conflict and emergency situations. Ms Cravero has held various posts of increasing responsibility with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), the UN Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the UN Development Programme (UNDP), and the World Health Organization (WHO). Her two last assignments with the UN included Deputy Executive Director of UNAIDS (2000 to 2005) and Director of the Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery of UNDP (2005 to 2009).
Advancing gender equality is a long-standing concern for Ms Cravero. At UNDP she chaired the Steering Committee “Stop Rape Now – UN Action Against Sexual Violence in Conflict”, which united the work of 12 UN entities towards the goal of ending sexual violence in conflict. From 2005 to 2008 she chaired the Leadership Council of the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS, a group of prominent personalities who advocate publicly on issues related to women and the “feminisation” of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Earlier in her career, Ms Cravero served as UN Resident Coordinator/Humanitarian Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Burundi (1998-2000); UNICEF Representative in Uganda (1994-1998); External Relations Officer of the WHO Global Programme on AIDS (1992-1994); UNICEF Senior Health Advisor (1988-1992); and UNICEF Programme Coordinator in Chad (1985-1988). Ms Cravero holds a PhD in Political Science from Fordham University, and a Master in Public Health from Columbia.