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"Women are often depicted as simply victims. The women in the pieces I've chosen here have overcome the stereotypes and created their own Herstory..." 

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Musimbi's Selections

Curator's Statement: Musimbi Kanyoro on Human Rights

Women are often depicted as simply victims. The women in the pieces I've chosen here have overcome the stereotypes and created their own Herstory. Their creativity and ability to name themselves as "successful" on their own terms is spot on. As the young Zambian girl said, "I am a role model in my community" I am inspired by the forward-looking, hopeful demeanor of women all over the world.

About Musimbi Kanyoro

Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro is President and CEO of the Global Fund for Women, a public foundation which seeds, strengthens, links, and supports the capacity building of women's rights organizations in every part of the world. Global Fund for Women grants help to expand the choices available to women and ensure that their voices are heard at local, national and international levels. Prior to the Global Fund, she served with the David and Lucile Packard Foundation in California, USA, the World YWCA and Lutheran World Federation, both based in Geneva, Switzerland.

Dr. Kanyoro is a passionate advocate for Women and girls' health and human rights, and social change philanthropy. She serves on the Global Committee of the Council on Foundations, is a member of the Aspen Institute Leaders Council and the UNFPA/IPPF High level taskforce for Reproductive Health. She also serves on the boards of Intra Health and CHANGE. Dr. Kanyoro has more than 20 years of experience with international organizations, served on the international steering committee for the Beijing world conference on women, has led delegations to five United Nations World Conferences throughout the 90's.

Dr. Kanyoro has a PhD in Linguistics from the University of Texas, Austin and Doctor of Ministry in Feminist Theology from San Francisco Theological Seminary. She was a visiting scholar of Hebrew and the Old Testament at Harvard University. She has received three honorary doctorates and several recognition awards, including a leadership award from the Kenya Government. She has written numerous articles, hundreds of speeches and has written and co-edited a number books.

Get to Know Musimbi Kanyoro

Learn more about Musimbi Kanyoro and why she's involved in IMOW's  Curating Change.

  • IMOW matters to me because... It is digital and allows people from every part of the world to access and experience knowledge and information without borders.
  • People don't know that I can...Dance with a pot full of water balancing on my head.
  • A mantra to live by…"As a leader, I permit myself some time to dream before I think."

Take Action

Learn which causes and organizations matter most to Musimbi Kanyoro and how you can connect with them.


The Global Fund was funding and supporting the advancement of women and girls long before it became trendy


The World YWCA is a large movement devoted to young women's leadership, and has been tested for sustainability for more than 150 years.


Spark is a diverse group of young women and men who are giving new meaning to the words “activist” and “advocates.”


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