Mona Sutphen and Michael Rozen to Serve as Board Chairs of Human Rights First

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 21, 2019

As international human rights organization transitions leadership, former chairs Bill Zabel and Tom Bernstein to serve in
emeritus roles

WASHINGTON – As Human Rights First holds its board meeting this week, the human rights organization announced critical transitions in leadership of the board. Long-time board chairs Bill Zabel and Tom Bernstein will become board chairs emeriti, remaining involved in ensuring that Human Rights First continues to thrive in its critical work defending American values and universal human rights. Former Obama deputy chief of staff for policy Mona Sutphen and investor Michael Rozen will now serve as board chairs, and former Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken and media executive Lynda Clarizio will serve as vice-chairs.

“We are forever grateful to Bill Zabel and Tom Bernstein for their leadership, and we are glad that they will continue to serve as advisors to us,” said Mike Breen, president and CEO of Human Rights First. “We are counting on Mona Sutphen and Mike Rozen to keep this organization on the front line of the fight for human rights and American leadership in the world.”

Rozen is President and CEO of TRGP Capital Management, an alternative asset manager. Formerly, Rozen was a national leader in resolving complex, multiparty disputes. Among numerous posts, he was deputy special master of both the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund and the BP Victim Compensation Fund. Sutphen served as President Obama’s deputy chief of staff for policy and spent nine years in the foreign service, including on the staff of the National Security Council and the State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. She is currently a Senior Advisor at The Vistria Group, a private equity firm.

In announcing the transition, Sutphen said of her predecessors, “Both Tom and Bill have provided a model of principled, enlightened leadership that Mike and I will do our best to emulate. We aim to do them proud.”  Rozen added, “Bill Zabel and Tom Bernstein have led the Human Rights First board with wisdom, compassion, and an abiding commitment to human rights.  Mona and I are humbled to follow in their footsteps.”

Lynda Clarizio, an executive in the media industry who has grown and scaled businesses with a particular focus on data and technology at places like Nielsen U.S. Media and AOL, said, “I am honored to join Tony Blinken in taking on the vice-chair role as the work of Human Rights First has never been more important and is fundamental to our core American values.”

Antony Blinken, the former Deputy Secretary of State and current managing director of the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement, said, “At a time when human rights and the rule of law are under challenge around the world, the role of Human Rights First in spurring America to lead by the power of our example is more important than ever.  I’m honored to support its vital mission.”


Published on November 21, 2019


Seeking asylum?

If you do not already have legal representation, cannot afford an attorney, and need help with a claim for asylum or other protection-based form of immigration status, we can help.