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Author, How to be an Amazing Volunteer Overseas: Rules of the Road, Stories from the Field

Photo courtesy of:
Mary-Lu Bakker-Cole

Susan was born and raised in Toronto, Canada and was based in New York in the 90s for her career in the development sector. For the last 20 years, she has lived in London, UK with her husband and teenage son. As of June 2021, she and her family have started a new chapter in Washington DC.

Susan is a part of the Search for Common Ground's President's Leadership Council - read more by clicking here.

In March 2014, on an IRC-UK board trip to Jordan and Kurdistan in Iraq, Susan made the following five minute video in order to communicate the situation for Syrian refugees. A week later, she presented the video at a Names Not Numbers conference. By chance, Christiane Amanpour, of CNN, was present and decided to use a portion of it on her program a few days later (video #2). You never know when someone might be able to amplify your voice.

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Susan has been involved in the NGO (non-governmental organisation) world for more than 35 years. She has worked and volunteered in 70 countries. 

In 1992, Susan went to Bangladesh where she got her training in microfinance at Grameen Bank from Professor Muhammad Yunus. From 1992 – 2001, Susan was a consultant providing technical assistance and conducting workshops in team building, communications and microfinance principles for NGOs, UN agencies and donor governments. 

Susan has served on the board of the Thomson Reuters Foundation (2018 - 2021), the International Rescue Committee (IRC-UK) (2012 - 2018) and remains involved in refugee issues. She was Vice-Chair on the Carter Center UK board )2010 – 2014) and was Co-Chair of the Human Rights Watch London Committee (2006 – 2010).

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