Logotipo do dia internacional da sindrome de Down - World Down Syndrome Day, em vermelho e azulDown Syndrome International is delighted to announce that registration is open for the 2013 World Down Syndrome Day “Right to Work” Conference at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, USA. REGISTRATION IS FREE and easy to do. Simply follow the link below to complete the online form:


Please join us for this exciting programme as we come together to build awareness of Down syndrome and other disabilities around the world, to learn about the importance of education, health and well-being, and support for employment, independent living and community participation in realising the fundamental right of people with Down syndrome and other disabilities to work, and to showcase some of the good practice that is implemented by organisations in different countries to further employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

In 2013, there is also time set aside to network with speakers, Down syndrome organisations and all Conference delegates.

Date: Thursday 21 March 2013
Time: 10am – 6pm
Location: Conference Room 4, United Nations Headquarters, New York City

World Down Syndrome Day “Right to Work” Conference

United Nations Headquarters Conference Room 4 New York

21 March 2013 PROGRAM BOOK


Dear Distinguished Delegates,

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to our 2nd World Down Syndrome Day Conference. This conference is in recognition of the State Parties to the United Nations in passing a resolution to recognize and designate 21st March annually as World Down Syndrome Day (WDSD).

In building awareness for employment of people with Down syndrome the conference is aligned with Article 27 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) on work and employment. Through the passing of the of this convention, the United Nations reaffirms that all persons with all types of disabilities, including Down syndrome, must enjoy all human rights and fundamental freedoms. Article 27 of the UN CRPD specifically address the area of Work and Employment and states:

“States Parties recognize the right of persons with disabilities to work, on an equal basis with others; this includes the right to the opportunity to gain a living by work freely chosen or accepted in a labour market

and work environment that is open, inclusive and accessible to persons with disabilities.”

The Right to Work is a fundamental human right that contributes to livelihood, the person’s development and recognition within the community. This is often not realized for people with Down syndrome, which is mostly due to inadequate educational and training programmes, discriminatory employment practices as well as various challenges that others do not experience. At the same time, there are private sector companies and public sector organizations that lack the knowledge on how beneficial from a business perspective and how appropriate from a social agenda it is to employ people with Down syndrome. There are others that understand the value yet do not know how to execute an effective strategy.

This conference will build awareness around employment issues for people with Down syndrome. It will provide an opportunity for those with Down syndrome to share their employment expectations and experiences and show how it relates to their fundamental human rights. In bringing together experts from across the globe, people will be educated on best practices and can institute them in their own local area or educate those who can affect employment in their community. After the conference, Down Syndrome International will prepare a paper for public release summarizing the key issues and will work to establish an online central information hub and database which will connect those interested in developing and promoting best practices with those who already have established procedures and successful.

I would like to take this opportunity in thanking the Permanent Mission of Australia to the United Nations, the Permanent Mission of Brazil to the United Nations, the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations, The Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations, The Permanent Mission of Poland to the United Nations, The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) and The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) for their kind sponsorship and to each and everyone of you for sharing this day with us.

Yours Sincerely,



10:00am – 10:40am
Official Opening and Launch of World Down Syndrome Day “Right to Work” Conference
With the adoption of United Nations General Assembly Resolution 66/149, the international community agreed to formally recognize World Down Syndrome Day every 21 March, to continue to raise public awareness of Down syndrome. The resolution also calls upon the international community to continue to advocate for the rights of those with Down syndrome, including the right to work and employment, in accordance with Article 27 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The speakers on this opening panel will touch on the multiple ways that United Nations Member States and agencies across the UN system are addressing disabilities and particularly the employment of persons with disabilities.

Penny Robertson – Chairperson, Down Syndrome International (DSi) – Welcome & Introductions
Daniela Bas – UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, “Message from the UN Secretary General” H.E. Mrs. Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti – Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Brazil to the UN, “Message from the UN Special Rapparteur on Disability”
H.E. Mr. Ryszard Sarkowicz – Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Poland to the UN
H.E. Mr. Tsuneo Nishida – Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Japan to the UN
H.E. Mr. Gary Quinlan – Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Australia to the UN
H.E. Mr. Manjeev Singh Puri – Ambassador, DPR and Charge d’Affaires of India to the UN
Charles Radcliffe – Chief of the Global Issues Section, United Nations Human Rights Office (OHCHR)

10:40am – 11:50am
Spotlight on the UN: Gopal Mitra – Programme Specialist, UNICEF
Panel: Importance of education, health and wellbeing in preparing persons with Down syndrome for

employment and an independent adult life

This panel will address some of the barriers that might prevent a person with Down syndrome from gaining and retaining meaningful and enjoyable employment. Panelists will explore strategies to overcome these barriers; discuss the empowering potential of inclusive education; and the critical importance of maintaining good physical and mental health.

Sheri Brynard – Self Advocate – South Africa – “Make the best of who you are”
Prof. Eman Gaad – United Arab Emirates – Dean of the Faculty of Education, British University, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, “The experience of UAE Down Syndrome Association in the empowerment of people with Down Syndrome at the work place: Employ to empower”
John Anton – Self Advocate – United States – National Down Syndrome Society self advocate, “On Capitol Hill: Keeping up with a Congresswoman”
Prof. Tony Holland – United Kingdom – University of Cambridge, Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Group and Chair in Learning Disabilities, The Health Foundation; “Growing older and the challenges ageing brings for people with Down syndrome.”

Penny Robertson – Australia – Chair, Down Syndrome International; Founder, Australian International School, Indonesia “Applying lessons from education to improve employment prospects”

11:50am – 12:00pm Break

12:00pm – 1:00pm
Spotlight on the UN: Vinicius Carvalho Pinheiro – Deputy Director of the International Labour Organization Panel: Preparing persons with Down syndrome and their future employers for work

This panel showcases examples of best practices in recruiting and training persons with disabilities, and particularly persons with Down syndrome. Companies and organizations will highlight specific and successful programs that have been implemented by or for employers, and explain how they were able to educate their staff so that the recruitment of persons with disabilities became an integrated part of the company culture. Self-advocates will share their personal workplace experiences.

Kate Powell – Self Advocate – United Kingdom, “My working life”

Veronica Mulenga – United Kingdom, Workfit, “Connecting Employers and Employees with Down’s syndrome”
Breno Viola – Self Advocate – Brazil, “Work and Accessibility”
Randy Lewis – United States, Retired SVP, Walgreens, “No Greatness Without Goodness”

Setsuko Fujiyama – Japan, Jobs Experience Program, “A job for now and the future”

1:00pm – 3:00pm Lunch (Networking in Conference Room E)

3:00pm – 3:45pm
Spotlight on the UN: Akiko Ito – Chief of the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with

Disabilities and UN Focal Point on Disability

Panel: Employment of persons with Down syndrome in practice – Employees and Employers perspectives

Around the world, persons with Down syndrome have been proving to themselves and to the world that they have the ability to be valuable employees. In this panel, both employees and employers will share personal reflections on their employment challenges and successes, and suggest strategies for how others might overcome their own barriers to employment.

Chris McMurray – Self Advocate – Australia, “Navigating the Employment Wilderness”
Jagdeep Thakral – Singapore, General Manager, Holiday Inn and Member, Enabling Employers Network, “Bridging Gaps, Touching Lives”
Lloyd Lewis – United States, President and CEO of ARC Thrift, “Employing People with Down Syndrome – Ideas from the Largest Employer of People with Disabilities in Colorado”

3:45pm – 4:30pm Roundtable Discussion

This roundtable will provide a 360 degree view – employee, supervisor, and corporate – of a successful employment situation. Each person will be able to share why this works and how they address specific challenges when they arise. Wegmans Food Market has been on Fortune Magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” list for 16 straight years and is currently #5. Wegmans has also been chosen as National Down Syndrome Congress’ Employer of the Year.

Vanessa dos Santos – Down Syndrome International (Moderator)
Brad Hennefer – Self Advocate – United States, NDSC, Wegmans Food Market Customer Service Team, Cherry Hill, NJ,
Ruth Ann Virgil – Divisional Human Resources Manager, Wegmans Food Market
Carl Curtiss – Wegmans Food Market, Store Manager, Wegmans Cherry Hill, NJ

4:30pm – 4:45pm Break

4:45pm – 5:45pm
Spotlight on the UN: Dr. Selim Jahan – Director, United Nations Development Programme Panel: What does it mean to live, work and be included in the community?

Article 27 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities provides that persons with disabilities, including Down syndrome, are entitled to the basic human right to work and employment. To close the World Down Syndrome Day Conference for 2013, this panel will highlight the importance of this basic human right, not just for a person’s financial independence, but also for their self-esteem and to create a sense of purpose and community.

5:45pm – 6pm Conference Close
Spotlight on the UN: Mr. Ivan Šimonović – Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, Office of the

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) Closing Remarks: Vanessa dos Santos – Down Syndrome International

Alex Snedden – Self Advocate – New Zealand, “Having a good and ordinary life working, flatting and living in the community”
Vanessa dos Santos – South Africa, President, Down Syndrome International (DSi); National Director, Down Syndrome South Africa, “Citizenship and Living in the Community”

Kazuki Kobayashi – Self Advocate – Japan “I want to be a taxpayer”
Prof. Roy McConkey – Northern Ireland – Professor of Developmental Disabilities, University of Ulster, “Making inclusion a reality: Five steps to success”

www.worlddownsyndromeday.org/ I www.ds-int.org/page5image31120 page5image31280

United Nations High Level Meeting of the General Assembly on Disability and Development (HLMDD)

On 21 September 2013, the United Nations General Assembly will convene a one-day high-level meeting on disability and development (HLMDD) at the level of Heads of State and Government with the overarching theme: “The way forward: a disability inclusive development agenda towards 2015 and beyond”. The HLMDD will comprise a plenary meeting and two consecutive informal interactive round tables. Participation in each round table will include UN Member States, observers and representatives of entities of the United Nations system, as well as representatives of civil society, organizations of persons with disabilities and the private sector. It is hoped that the HLMDD will result in a concise, action-oriented Outcome Document in support of the aims of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the realization of the Millennium Development Goals and other internationally agreed development goals for persons with disabilities.

To help prepare for the HLM, the United Nations invites participation from civil society and asks that delegates at this World Down Syndrome Day “Right to Work” Conference participate in providing feedback through an Online Consultation process which is taking place through 28 March 2013. The consultations are co-organised by DESA and UNICEF. Please register at: http://www.worldwewant2015.org/enable. Simultaneous consultations will take place in English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

Resolution to recognize World Down Syndrome Day

World Down Syndrome Day was proclaimed in 2011 by the United Nations General Assembly resolution 66/149, to be observed annually. The resolution was proposed and promoted by Brazil, and co-sponsored by 78 UN Member States. From 2012 onwards the date will be celebrated by all 193 UN Member States. The resolution is available at: http://www.un.org/disabilities/documents/resolutions/a_res_66_149.pdf

World Down Syndrome Day

World Down Syndrome Day (WDSD) was first established by Down Syndrome International and celebrated since 2006, being observed in over 60 countries around the world. The aim of the Day is to raise awareness and increase the understanding about Down syndrome, to promote the inherent rights and dignity of persons with Down syndrome to enjoy full and dignified lives and to recognize the worth and valuable contributions of people with Down syndrome (DS). The Day also works to ensure the inclusion of people with Down syndrome in every aspect of their community and society, in general. For more information about WDSD, visit www.worlddownsyndromeday.org.

Down Syndrome International

Down Syndrome International (DSi) is an international charity, comprised of memberships from individuals and organisations from all over the World. Members include people with Down syndrome, parents, family members, friends, care givers, professionals, practitioners, researchers, organisations and more. DSi’s mission is to improve quality of life and champion the rights of people with Down syndrome worldwide, raise standards of care, and provide a platform for people with Down syndrome to live full and rewarding lives. DSi believes this can only be achieved through improved knowledge of the condition, sharing of information and resources, and good communication and co-operation throughout the global Down syndrome community. For more information: www.ds-int.org.

Sponsored by

The permanent missions of Australia, Brazil, India, Japan, and Poland to the United Nations, UN Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and UNICEF and Organized by Down Syndrome International. Special Thank you to all the volunteers from ACDS, St. Dominics High School, Thomas Forester, and Reverend Kevin Smith. Lunch networking made possible by Down Syndrome international, GiGi’s Playhouse, Jerome Lejeune Foundation USA, National Down Syndrome Congress, and National Down Syndrome Society.

World Down Syndrome Day Committee and Conference Organizing Committee

Patricia Almeida I Christiane Aquino Bonomo I Andrew Boys I Vanessa dos Santos I Fred Doulton I Penny Green I Shoko Haruki I Amit Kumar I Gabrielle Krasowski I Rekha Ramachandran I Adriana telles ribeiro I Penny Robertson I Balbir Singh (WDSD Committee Chair) I Jessamy Tang (Conference Chair) I Daria Wolosiuk

JOHN ANTON Self-advocate (United States)


John Anton is a Legislative Specialist with the Mass Down Syndrome Congress (MDSC), a legislative intern for Representative Tom Sannicandro at the State House in Boston and a dedicated self-
advocate. This month John will live out a lifelong dream, advocating for disability policy at the highest level of government. John will intern for U.S. Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington.

In 2010 John was honored by the National Down Syndrome Society as “Advocate of the Year.” He was nominated by the Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress for his work with legislators, policy makers, and disability advocates to support legislation that improves and protects the lives and rights of people with

Down syndrome and other disabilities. As a self-advocate, John is a member of Massachusetts Standing Strong, serving as Chairperson from 2007 to 2009. He is still an active self-advocate, presently serving as interim Chairperson for the NE Regional Advocates. After a variety of jobs and challenges along the way, he developed a passion for advocating for people with developmental disabilities who want to find their voice and follow their dreams. John currently serves as an NDSS DS- Ambassador for the state of Massachusetts.

John lives in his own apartment, has a girlfriend, and continues to share the message that people with Down syndrome should be heard, taken seriously, and have respect and dignity as citizens of the United States.

Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD)
United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA)

Daniela Bas was appointed Director of DESA’s Division for Social Policy and Development on 9 May 2011. A politologist specialized in international politics, human rights and social development, Ms. Bas has most recently served as Senior Consultant designated by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as an expert on human rights to Institutes that operate internationally. She has also provided her expertise on anti-discrimination issues at the Presidency of the Council of Ministers.

Ms. Bas has worked for close to 10 years for the UN as a Professional Officer in social development and human rights, traveling around the world on behalf of the UN and also as a speaker at international conventions. She has also held a number of other significant assignments including as Special Adviser on “Fundamental Rights” for the former Vice President of the European Commission; as the Italian representative designated by the Presidency of the Council of Ministers on the topic “Tourism for All” to the European Commission; and as journalist and broadcaster for Italian Radio and TV.

Ms. Bas is a Board Member of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights and of the Committee to Promote non-Armed and non-Violent Civil Defense of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers. Her degree is in Political Science with a major in International Politics. Her dissertation is titled “The elimination of architectural barriers and the employment of people with physical disabilities”.

SHERI BRYNARD Self-advocate (South Africa)

Sheri Brynard is a very active, 30 year old, self advocate. She received a National Diploma in Educare from Motheo College. Sheri is the only learner with Down syndrome who has passed a National Technical College Diploma in South Africa, without having been granted any concessions.

She has been asked to speak over 156 times at events in South Africa and around the world. She has won numerous national awards for her accomplishments and received national and international recognition for advocacy work to build awareness for the abilities of those with Down syndrome.

Sheri is an assistant teacher at a Pre-Primary school and also an actress. She has a full life, working, motivating, travelling and most importantly changing perceptions of people with Down syndrome. She is proud to be who she is, a woman with Down syndrome!

Store Manager, Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. – Cherry Hill, New Jersey

Carl Curtiss is the Store Manager of the Cherry Hill, NJ location at Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. Carl was hired with Wegmans in 2000 as a Prepared Foods Manager. In 2001 – 2003, Carl held positions overseeing the Deli department, the Cheese department and Catering department. He progressed through the Perishable Manager training, and went on to become a Perishable Manager, then onto Deli Special Assignment before being promoted to Store Manager in 2004.

In Carl’s current role, he is responsible for the entire operation of the Cherry Hill, NJ location which employs over 500 people. It is one of Wegmans’ hub stores and is responsible for rolling out new programs and training of other stores. In 2012, Carl, along with Joe Sofia, New Jersey Division

Manager, accepted the National Down Syndrome Congress’ Employer of the Year on behalf of Wegmans Food Markets.

Carl graduated from Johnson & Wales University with an Associate Degree in Culinary Arts. After graduating Johnson & Wales, Carl pursued a career with Hyatt Hotels Corporation in the Culinary Field for over 8 years, before joining Wegmans Food Markets.

President, Down Syndrome International (South Africa) National Chairperson, Down Syndrome South Africa

Vanessa dos Santos is the mother of 3 boys of whom the youngest has both Down syndrome and cerebral palsy.

She has been involved with Down Syndrome South Africa (DSSA) since his birth in 1995. Vanessa was appointed as the National Chairperson of DSSA in 2003 and later appointed as the National Director of the organisation. Vanessa has also been a Board member of Down Syndrome International (DSi) since 2003.

Much of the work she has been involved in has been focusing on poverty and disability and she has been instrumental in setting up “Outreach Support Groups” and “Self Advocacy Groups” throughout South Africa and is the founder member of the Self Advocacy Movement of South Africa (SAMSA) and

Inclusion South Africa (ISA). She is also very passionate about the human rights of individuals with Down syndrome and intellectual disabilities. Other areas of interest are policy development that encourages the improvement of lives of disabled people, early intervention, inclusive education, self-advocacy and supported employment. She recently completed a Masters in Philosophy in Disability Studies at University of Cape Town.

In 2012 Vanessa became President of Down Syndrome International.

Jobs Experience Program (Japan)

Setsuko Fujiyama is a member of the Japan Down Syndrome Society (JDS), Hiroshima Chapter and has a 31 year old daughter, Seiko, who has Down syndrome. Professionally, Setsuko taught English at their local junior high schools in Hiroshima. Ever since she gave birth to Seiko, her love and devotion to Seiko never stalled even for a moment. Her dream was and is to see all of society become more open and receptive toward people with Down syndrome.

The JDS Hiroshima Chapter embarked on a program called the “Job Experience Program” for individuals with Down syndrome and the program has been growing steadily is expected to provide an increasing number of employment opportunities for individuals with Down syndrome. 15 young people with Down

syndrome who participated in this program have received employment opportunities with 2 new job placements starting this April. The “Jobs Experience Program” works with many employers/workplaces and more than 13 workplaces are employing young people with disabilities including individuals with Down syndrome.

Setsuko is convinced that the program now stands at the starting point of a journey toward her dream of realizing a truly inclusive society and the “Jobs Experience Program” is moving in the right direction.


Dean of the Faculty of Education and Full Professor of Special and Inclusive Education for the Faculty of Education, British University (United Arab Emirates)

Professor Gaad is the Dean of the Faculty of Education and a Full Professor of Special and Inclusive Education at British University in Dubai. Professor Gaad is an Honorary Fellow at the internationally reputed University of Birmingham, UK.

She founded and heads the educational committee for UAEDSA (United Arab Emirates Down Syndrome Association). Professor Gaad is one of the governors of Dubai College and on the Board of Directors of several non-profit organizations in the UAE. She has advised policy and decision makers as a senior consultant for both governments of Dubai and Abu Dhabi on disability related issues. She is also a winner

of HH Princess Haya Award for Special Education as best distinguished individual research in 2012, and was awarded the Global Leadership in Education Award from the Asian Leadership Award Board. She was seconded for two years as the first Director of Disability Services in Dubai Government’s Community Development Authority.

A committed advocate for the educational and social rights for people with disability, she is a UNESCO Consultant on inclusion of learners with disabilities in regular schools. Her single authored book ‘Inclusive Education in the Middle East’ by Routledge is very well received by international scholars and researchers. Professor Gaad is currently a National Representative of the World Forum on Early Care and Education.

BRAD HENNEFER Self-Advocate (United States)

Brad Hennefer is a 24-year-old self advocate, who has Down syndrome, and rises above the everyday challenges of his disABILITY. Brad has been employed from the time he was fourteen years old. He is currently employed by Wegmans Food Markets and Aramark at Cherry Hill High School East in their food service division.

Brad has been featured in the national media on Good Morning America, Sports Illustrated, the New York Times, CBS, NBC, ABC and Comcast SportsNet. Brad is the first individual with Down syndrome to earn varsity letters in two high school sports, basketball and golf, at Cherry Hill High School, NJ. You can read about Brad’s journey in the books, “Chicken Soup for the Soul Inside Basketball” and “Gifts 2.” He is also the inspiration behind the “Brad Hennefer Golf for Life

Foundation, Inc.” a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (www.golfforlife.org) which provides athletic opportunities for individuals who have Down syndrome.

Brad is a frequent speaker and was the keynote speaker at a National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC) Annual Convention and the “Turning the World Upside Down” conference at Princeton University. He has also conducted workshops at the NDSC convention from 2007 to 2011. His hobbies include golf, basketball, power lifting, and competing in Special Olympics.

Chair of Learning Disabilities, University of Cambridge (United Kingdom)
Lead of the Cambridge Intellectual and Development Disabilities Research Group

Tony Holland trained in Medicine at University College and University College Hospital, London, qualifying in 1973. After some years in General Medicine he then trained in Psychiatry at the Maudsley Hospital and Institute of Psychiatry in London. In 1992 he moved to the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Cambridge and in 2002 he was appointed to the Health Foundation Chair in Learning Disability at the University.

He leads the Cambridge Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Group

(www.CIDDRG.org.uk) in the Department of Psychiatry. This is a multidisciplinary group that undertakes a broad range of research relevant to people with intellectual disabilities. His specific interests include the Prader Willi Syndrome; the relationship between Down’s syndrome and Alzheimer’s disease. He was an adviser to the UK Parliament on


the Mental Capacity Act 2005 for England and Wales. In 2010 he was elected a Fellow of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences and appointed a Senior Investigator by the Department of Health, National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). He is editor of the Journal of Intellectual Disability Research (JIDR) and was awarded with a life time achievement award by the Down’s Syndrome Association (UK) in 2011.

Chief of the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities UN Focal Point on Disability

Ms. Akiko Ito is Chief of the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and UN/Focal Point on Disability. She is also a Departmental Focal Point for Women of Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations and the DESA Focal Point for Human Rights Mainstreaming for UNDG. Ms. Ito has extensively lectured and published on issues concerning disability and human rights at the United Nations. Previous to her current post, she worked in the Legal Affairs Section of the United Nations Drug Control Programme in Vienna, Austria.

Her academic background is in international law and the area of interest is domestic application of international law, with a focus on the rights of minorities and other disadvantaged groups.

Ms. Ito has an LL.B. in International Legal Studies from Sophia University, Tokyo, Japan, an M.A. in International Relations from the University of Chicago and an LL.M. from Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California at Berkeley.

Director, Poverty Practice, United Nations Development Programme

Dr. Selim Jahan is the Director, Poverty Practice, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in New York. Prior to his appointment to this position in September 2007, he was the Cluster Leader, Strategies and Policies for Poverty Reduction (2006) and between 2001 and 2006, he was the Senior Adviser, Employment for Poverty Reduction in the Poverty Group, Bureau for Development Policy (BDP) in UNDP in New York. He has also has served as the Deputy Director of the Human Development Report Office (HDRO) and was a member of the Core Team that authored nine global Human Development Reports.

Before joining UNDP in 1992, Dr. Jahan held different positions in universities, national governments and other international organizations. He was a Professor of Economics and the Director of the Economic Research Unit, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. He was a Lecturer, Department of Economics, McGill University in Montreal, Canada a Visiting Fellow, Cambridge University, U.K. and a Visiting Scholar, School Of Public Policy, University of Maryland, U.S.A. He has also been an Adviser and Consultant to USAID, Dhaka, Bangladesh, the Planning Commission, Government of Bangladesh and various international organizations including ILO, UNDP, UNESCO, and the World Bank.

Dr. Jahan holds a Ph.D. in Economics from McGill University where he was a Commonwealth Scholar. He also has degrees from the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. He’s the author of six books and more than 150 articles in various national and international academic journals. His current research interests are on such issues as modeling for MDG-based national development strategies, inclusive growth and inequality, employment for poverty reduction, and economic governance.

KAZUKI KOBAYASHI Self-advocate (Japan)

Kazuki Kobayashi is 27 years old and has Down syndrome. He works at “Tiny Sweet Chestnut” bakery and lives alone with some support in Ishinomaki-city in Miyagi-prefecture.

Growing up, his mother’s goal was to have live, go to school and work in his local community. He was a member of his school’s basketball team. He also plays the guitar and organized a rock band when he was a high school student.

Mr. Kobayashi wanted to become a college student and he studied very hard. He attended and graduated from Ishinomaki Senshu University’s Department of Economics. The theme of his thesis was “Becoming

a taxpayer even if I have a disability.” After graduating from Ishinomaki Senshu University, he took an English conversation course at a community college in Hilo, Hawaii (United States) for six months where he lived in a local home. Upon returning to Japan, he was committed to becoming a part of his local community and he began attending an open-seminar at Tohoku Welfare University in order to make friends his age and also worked with and supported people with physical disabilities through music.

On March 11, 2011, his hometown was devastated by the tsunami caused by the East Japan Great Earthquake. Fortunately, all his family survived and he was able to return to work. Mr. Kobayashi is now training to be a pastry chef and hopes to build and open a specialty food store with his father.

Lloyd Lewis has served as President and CEO for Arc Thrift Stores since December 2005, a Colorado non-profit corporation whose primary lines of business include the popular arc Thrift stores as well as the Vehicles for Charity program. In this capacity, Lloyd is responsible for generating funding to support advocacy for persons with developmental disabilities in the state of Colorado for 12 Arc chapters, including Down syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, autism, and other forms of cognitive deficit.

Lloyd’s role includes oversight and management of arc’s 21 retail stores, corporate and support operations and a staff of nearly 1,100 employees. Arc Thriftstores is one of the largest employers of people with developmental disabilities in the State of Colorado. Since Lloyd’s tenure, arc Thrift has seen an increase of employees with disabilities from 10 in 2005, to over 150 today.

Lloyd currently serves as Board President for Rocky Mountain Down Syndrome Association as well as Colorado Cross Disabilities Coalition. Additionally, he served on Governor Hickenloopers Transition team in 2010. Lloyd holds a Masters Degree from the University of Chicago Graduate Business School, and has prior corporate experience with companies including IBM and Smith Barney.

Senior Vice President (retired), Walgreens (United States)

Peace Corps volunteer, Arthur Murray dance instructor, Ernst and Young partner, and accidental advocate, Senior Vice President Randy Lewis led Walgreens’ logistics division for sixteen years as the chain grew from 1,500 to 8,000 stores with the most advanced logistics network in its industry. Believing that people with disabilities could do more, he also introduced a model in its distribution centers that resulted in ten percent of its workforce consisting of people with disabilities (1,000+ PWDs). This initiative is not only changing the lives of thousands with disabilities but is also transforming the workplace and serving as a model for other employers.

During his 20 year tenure at Walgreens, Randy was responsible for all aspects of logistics. Previously, as a management consultant for 17 years, he worked in variety of industries to develop and implement process improvements throughout the world including the development of the financial control systems for the trans-Arabian pipeline in Saudi Arabia and developing the cost management/production planning systems for Argentina’s largest private steel manufacturer.

Randy currently serves on the Board of Directors of Wendy’s and the Warehouse Education & Research Council (WERC). He has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Tim Horton’s, the chairman of the Supply Chain Committee of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores and as the national conference chair for the Business Leadership Network.

He received a BA and MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. During this period of his life, he also served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Peru from 1971 to 1973.

President and CEO, Arc Thrift (United States)

Professor of Development Disabilities, University of Ulster (Northern Ireland)

Roy is Professor of Developmental Disabilities at the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland. A psychologist by training and a native of Belfast, he has previously held posts in England, Scotland and the Republic of Ireland. He is visiting professor at the University of Cape Town, South Africa, the University of Sydney and at Trinity College, Dublin.

He has worked in the field of intellectual disability for 40 years and has authored, co-authored and edited over 15 books, and published nearly 150 book chapters and research papers in learned journals. His latest book, co-authored with John Dunne and Nick Blitz, is ‘Shared Lives: Building relationships and community with people who have intellectual disabilities, (published by Sense Publishers, Amsterdam).

He has acted as a consultant to various United Nations agencies and International NGOs. This work has taken him to some 20 countries in Africa, Asia and South America. In 2010 the American Association of Intellectual and Development Disabilities selected him for their International Award. He is Fellow of the International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.

CHRIS MCMURRAY Self-advocate (Australia)

Chris is 31 years old and has worked for Raytheon Australia for over 11 years. He was born in the small town of Queanbeyan in New South Wales which is 260 km south of Sydney and close to the capital of Australia, Canberra.

Chris finished Year 12 at Queanbeyan High and enrolled at TAFE to study a secretarial course where he obtained several certificates in Office Administration. With appropriate training under his belt, Chris obtained work experience at the ACT Down Syndrome Association office in Canberra. At this point, Raytheon was looking for someone to provide office support as their organisation grew and they hired Chris. At Raytheon, Chris has become an integral part of their operations and never fails to make new staff welcome.

Chris is passionate about music, dance and sport. He competes in lawn bowls, plays the fiddle and is in two dance troupes; jazz and line dancing. Chris is an ardent fan of the iconic county and western performer, Slim Dusty, and has over 100 of his albums. Chris is looking forward to continuing his career with Raytheon, spending more time dancing and playing with his numerous nieces and nephews.

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) – Programme Specialist

Gopal Mitra works as a Programme Specialist, Children with Disabilities in the Disability Section, Programme Division at UNICEF HQ since March 2012. As part of the Disability Section’s mandate, his work involves mainstreaming disability across UNICEF’s policies and programmes. He also supports UNICEF’s engagement with the Inter Agency Support Group on Disability and with the UN Partnership on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and its Multi-Donor Trust Fund. Within the Disability Section he acts as the focal point on inclusive humanitarian action, assistive technology and on adolescents and young people with disabilities.

Prior to joining UNICEF Mitra was the International Policy and Campaigns Manager at the international NGO Leonard Cheshire Disability (LCD) and he has also held the position of Inclusive Education Manager of South Asia in. His engagement in the area of Education entailed working closely with government systems, teachers, parents, children with disabilities and the community at large. He has also co-chaired the inclusive education task group at International Disability and Development Consortium (IDDC). Gopal Mitra has been associated with the Disability Movement and has closely supported disabled people’s federation-building activities in Asia and Africa.

Prior to his work in civil society organisations, Gopal Mitra was an officer in the Indian Army. As a Major in the Indian Army, Mitra took part in counter insurgency operations, development projects, as well as disaster response. In January 2000

he was decorated with the “Sena Medal”, by the President of India for Gallantry/ distinguished service. Later that year, he was severely injured in an explosion and became blind.

Mitra has an MA in Social Work, specializing in Social Work Administration, from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences in India as well as an MSc in Development Management from the London School of Economics (LSE) in the UK.

Down’s Syndrome Association (United Kingdom)

Veronica joined the Down Syndrome Association (UK) as their Employment Development Officer in May 2011. She was brought in for her expertise in both disabilities and the employment sector. With a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting with Business Law (2006) and Postgraduate degree in Project Management (2008) both from the University of Portsmouth, Veronica’s passion for campaigning for equal rights came about whilst working for Kingston Volunteer Centre. As a project coordinator on the ‘Getting People Back to Work Project’ Veronica placed people with all types of disabilities into volunteering positions. It was her experience of supporting people with learning disabilities into volunteering that made her aware of how much impact meaningful employment can make in their lives and recognise ‘real work for real pay’ as an ultimate goal.

Veronica has led the development and implementation of one of DSA’s (UK) flagship programmes: WorkFit, and has been responsible for its immediate success. Working closely with private and public sector organisations, she has built WorkFit from the ground up, launching a bespoke website in December 2011 and successfully placing 19 individuals with Down’s Syndrome in meaningful work opportunities throughout the UK and Wales. Under her leadership WorkFit continues to go from strength to strength, and while she continues to work with prospective employers and candidates, Veronica has also been developing a grassroots element to the project; working with local Down’s syndrome support groups, schools and colleges to build up their own employment support networks.

Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations

Ambassador Tsuneo Nishida, Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations, was appointed to his current position in August 2010.

Before his appointment as Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations, Ambassador Nishida served as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Canada from January
2007. Working for Japan’s Foreign Ministry since 1970, he was in the Japanese Embassies in the USSR and in the USA, and was also the Japanese Consul-General in Los Angeles between August 1999 and March 2001. He served as Deputy Vice-Minister for Foreign Policy from September 2002 and as Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs in Tokyo from August 2005.

Deputy Director, International Labour Organization

Mr. Pinheiro is the Deputy Director of the ILO Office for the United Nations (New York) and Executive Secretary of the Social Protection Interagency Coordination Board since October 2012. He is currently representing the ILO in the UN discussions related to the post 2015 development agenda, social protection, youth employment and migration issues.

Before moving to New York, Mr Pinheiro served as senior social protection adviser to the ILO Director General in Geneva. He also acted as ILO Sherpa to the G20 Development Working Group and served as Executive Secretary of the Social Protection Floor Advisory Group, headed by Ms Michele Bachelet, which led to the adoption of the ILO recommendation on nationally-defined social protection floors. He

was also the focal point for the preparation of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio +20) and its follow up.

Prior to joining the ILO, Mr Pinheiro was the National Secretary for Social Security of Brazil (1999 -2002) responsible for designing and implementing the Brazilian Pension reform, including measures to increase coverage and strengthen the social

protection system. During this period he acted as Vice-Minister and Interim Minister of Social Security and as Executive Secretary of the National Social Security Council.

In 2001, Mr Pinheiro was elected Vice-President of the Inter-American Social Security Conference. Between 2002 and 2005 he worked in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), in Paris and also provided consultancy services for the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and to the World Bank in projects in Africa and Latin America.

Self-Advocate (United Kingdom)

Kate Powell has been working for the Down’s Syndrome Association (UK) for 15 years as the Down 2 Earth Editor, a magazine for people and by people with Down’s syndrome. She also supports the Communications department with administrative duties.

Outside the DSA, Kate is a member of a professional Dance company Larondina Dance Company and has participated in shows hosted in Germany, Moscow and Orlando. In 2010 they danced for the Pope in front of 80,000 people at Hyde Park in London.

Kate is a keen swimmer competing in the Special Olympics National Games in London. She has won

over 100 medals. She has starred alongside Simon Pegg & Ronnie Corbett in the film Burke and Hare and has been in various theatre productions with the Chilli Beans.

For the future Kate wants to continue representing people with Down’s syndrome and help make a difference. She also aspires to become an author as she loves writing poetry.

Ambassador, Deputy Permanent Representative and Charge d’Affaires of Permanent Mission of India to the UN

Ambassador Manjeev Singh Puri is India’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations. Prior to taking over his present assignment in New York, Ambassador Puri was Joint Secretary (United Nations – Economic & Social) in the Ministry of External Affairs. His charge included dealing with UN and multilateral bodies involved with economic and social issues, including in the areas of development, finance, human rights, migration, humanitarian affairs and UNESCO related matters.

Ambassador Puri was also closely involved with the Sherpa negotiations of the G8/G5 Summits and other major international fora of which India was a member. He represented India at meetings of the working group on development and in several meetings on energy and climate issues leading up to the

Toyako G8/G5 Summit in 2008 and thereafter.

A key element of Ambassador Puri’s charge in New Delhi was climate. He was a member of the Indian delegation at the Conference of Parties to the UNFCCC, where he was among the small group of negotiators in the final rounds of negotiations for the Bali Plan of Action. Ambassador Puri was also the coordinator of India’s participation in the Major Economies Meeting and served on the Executive Board of the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate. Ambassador Puri has also been actively involved with other issues relating to sustainable development and environment, including International Environmental Governance. He has been a member of the Indian delegation for the meetings of Commission of Sustainable Development and has actively participated in UNEP’s meetings of Environment Ministers. In New York he is actively involved with the discussions on the UN Conference on Sustainable Development.

Ambassador Puri is a member of the Indian Foreign Service having joined the service in 1982. In the course of his Foreign Service career, Ambassador Puri has served in Germany (twice), Bangkok, Caracas, Cape Town and Muscat. He has also served in the Ministry of External Affairs. Ambassador Puri is on the Advisory Board of TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute, New Delhi) and was on the Steering Committee for the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit.

Manjeev Singh Puri (born 1959) has an MBA degree and had worked for Hindustan Unilever before joining Government. He did his BA (Honours) in Economics from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University, with top honours. He is married (wife: Mrs Namrita Puri) and has two children.

Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Australia to the United Nations

Mr. Quinlan presented his credentials as Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Australia to the United Nations on 25 June 2009.

From December 2007 until March 2009, Mr. Quinlan was the Senior Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Defence, and National Security.

Mr. Quinlan joined the then Department of Foreign Affairs in 1973 and has served in several senior positions in the Department in Canberra, including First Assistant Secretary, Consular, Public Diplomacy and Parliamentary Affairs Division (2007) and First Assistant Secretary, Americas and

Europe Division (2000-2001). He was Head of the Australian Delegation to the Law of the Sea Preparatory Commission from 1987 until 1988, and has extensive experience in negotiations also on Antarctic matters.

Mr. Quinlan’s overseas assignments have been as Deputy Head of Mission, Australian Embassy Washington DC (2005- 2007); High Commissioner (Ambassador) to Singapore (2001-2005); First Secretary, Australian Mission to the United Nations, New York (1981-1985); Australian Deputy Permanent Delegate to UNESCO, Paris (1979-1981); and Second Secretary in Dublin (1974-1977). He was attached to the Economic Development Institute, World Bank, in Washington DC (1984).

Mr. Quinlan also served as Chief of Staff to the Minister for Resources (1988-1990); to the Minister for Industrial Relations (Labour) (1990-1993); to the Minister for Trade (1993-1994) and to the Minister for Industry, Science and Technology (1994-1996).

Mr. Quinlan was educated at the University of Newcastle and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree with Honours. He also holds the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters (Hon DLitt Newc, 2007).

Chief of the Global Issues Section, United Nations Human Rights Office (OHCHR)

Charles Radcliffe is Chief of the Global Issues Section at the United Nations Human Rights Office (OHCHR) in New York, responsible for coordinating work on thematic human rights issues.

He also serves as the senior UN human rights adviser on sexual orientation and gender identity, supporting UN efforts to raise awareness of and address violence and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people around the world.

Prior to joining the United Nations in 2006, Charles helped to establish and develop the International Crisis Group—a non-governmental organization committed to preventing and resolving deadly conflict. Recruited at Crisis Group’s inception in 1995, he remained with the organization for eleven years,

including seven years as the organization’s vice-president.
He previously worked as a political adviser and speechwriter for several British and Australian politicians.

Charles holds a First Class Honours Degree in Law from King’s College London in the United Kingdom, and a Masters Degree in International Relations from Sydney University, Australia.

Chair, Down Syndrome International (Australia) Founder, Australian International School (Indonesia)

Penny Robertson has been involved for nearly 30 years in developing key initiatives for people with Down syndrome and other disabilities at local, state, national and international levels. Penny was one of the founders of Down Syndrome International (DSi) in 1993 and the Asia Pacific Down Syndrome Federation in 1994.

In 1994 Penny and her family moved to Jakarta, Indonesia, where she started the Australian International School in order to provide an inclusive education in a mainstream setting for her daughter Shona, who has Down syndrome. Penny has consulted on curriculum development for people with disabilities throughout Indonesia and she has played a significant role in establishing support programmes and national Down Syndrome Associations in the Asia Pacific region.

In 1991 the Australian Government awarded Penny as a Member of the Order of Australia for her services to the education of the intellectually disabled. On 21 March 2011, Penny received the President’s Special Recognition Award for a lifetime’s achievement in Down syndrome advocacy.

Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Poland to the United Nations

Mr. Ryszard Sarkowicz graduated with High Honors from the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, receiving a degree in law (1977) and in philosophy (1979). He later earned his LL.D. (1993), received tenure (habilitation – 1995) and in 2005-2009 held a position professor of law at the Faculty of Law at the Jagiellonian University. Mr. Sarkowicz has published a vast array of works, including over 60 papers, 5 books and 20 journal articles on various legal issues ranging from professional ethics and legal interpretation to penal and commercial law. He also carried out research and lectured abroad in many universities: the University of Vienna in Austria (1987), Oxford University in the United Kingdom (1988), the European University Institute in Florence, Italy (1990), the University of Munich in Germany (1994-1995).

Since 1991 he has been employed in the Polish Foreign Service (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), holding various positions: a legal counselor, Head of Legal Department of MFA, Special Envoy (in the rank of ambassador ad personam) to the Antarctic Treaty, and Deputy Director of the Protocol Department, successively. He was also posted abroad as Consul General of Poland in Chicago and in Sydney. From 2010 until assuming duties of the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Poland to the UN he has been the Director of Legal and Treaty Department.

During his career in the Foreign Service he attended numerous conferences abroad and represented Poland at many bilateral and multilateral talks and negotiations. Mr. Sarkowicz was born on November 2, 1952. He and his wife Anna, a lecturer of English at the Jagiellonian University, permanently reside in Kraków.

Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, Head of the New York Office of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

Ivan Šimonović assumed his functions as Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights on 17 July 2010, heading OHCHR’s New York Office.

Before joining the United Nations, from 2008 he held the position of Minister of Justice of Croatia. Previously Mr. Šimonović was Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York, where he served as Senior Vice-President and President of the Economic and Social Council from 2001 to 2003.

A Croatian national, Mr. Šimonović worked as a professor at the Faculty of Law at the University of

Zagreb, where he served as Head of the Legal Theory Department, Vice-Dean and Vice-Rector for international cooperation.

He has experience and has published extensively in the fields of international relations, law, human rights, and development of national institutions. In an expert capacity, he has been a member of the Council of Europe’s Commission for Democracy through Law (i.e. the Venice Commission) and the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), as well as the Agent of the Republic of Croatia before the United Nations International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Mr. Šimonović has a graduate degree in law, a master’s degree in public administration and politics, and a Ph.D. from the University of Zagreb and was a visiting scholar at the Universities of Graz and Yale. Mr. Šimonović was born in 1959 in Zagreb, Croatia. He is married with two children.

ALEX SNEDDEN Self-advocate (New Zealand)

Alex is 24 years old and he describes himself as being “a good role model and leader for people with Down syndrome”. Since leaving school in 2007, Alex has developed an employment portfolio, strong friendships, a home of his own, a place in community, and independence from his family. He is a committed Catholic, a very loyal employee and in his spare time he enjoys Karate, going to the Gym, and is an avid wrestling a rugby fan.

He is a valued member of the staff at Drake Medox, Snedden Airocean Services and the Auckland

Catholic Diocese administration team. He volunteers one morning a week for a major inner city foodbank and in 2011 won the Volunteer of the Year Award for Volunteer Auckland.Alex is a proud committee member of People First and the New Zealand Down Syndrome Association Self-advocates committee ‘Strive’. In 2010 he won the Youth Attitude Award, a major achievement for any young man starting out in life.

Alex is one of the first group of young New Zealanders with an intellectual disability to have come through a fully inclusive education system and he is very determined to take up a life of contribution and social value in community. Alex will present what it means to him to be independent, the vital role his Circle of Support plays in his life, and the responsibilities that come with adulthood. He will talk about the dreams and aspirations he holds for his future.

General Manager, Holiday Inn – Singapore Orchard City (Singapore) Member, Enabling Employers Network

Jagdeep Thakral is currently the General Manager of Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre and oversees the entire Hotel operations. Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre was the first and only hotel in the Singapore hospitality industry to be appointed a Centre of Training & Integration (CTI) by the National Council of Social Services (NCSS). It is an initiative that promotes a structured on-the-job- training program using buddy systems for PWDs within a real-time work environment.

Jagdeep has been appointed by the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports (MCYS) to

be a member of the Singapore’s Enabling Employers Network (EEN) since 2010. The EEN is an alliance of like-minded employers who seek to champion and advance the employment opportunities for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs). Currently, 13% of Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre’s manpower is comprised of PWDs. As an appointed EEN member, Jagdeep has been a guest speaker of the ILO Global Business and Disability Network Regional Meeting (2013) and Building “Disability Confidence” in Asia – The Business Case Seminar (2011). Under Jagdeep’s leadership, Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre achieved two major milestones: the first Hotel in Singapore to be awarded with the Endorsement of Commitment under ISO 26000 for Social Responsibility, and the OSHAS 18001 for Occupational Health and Safety Management System. Further, the Hotel has been accorded corporate awards such as the Asia’s Best Employer Brand Award 2012 (Universum), Enabling Champion Award 2012 (Enabling Employers Network), Best Employer Award 2011 (Aon Hewitt) and the Corporate Responsibility Award 2011 (IHG).

Born in New Delhi, India, Jagdeep enjoys a good game of golf and spending quality time with his family.

BRENO VIOLA Self-advocate (Brazil)

Breno Viola de Azevedo Cunha is a self-advocate from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Currently, he is one of the coordinators of Movimento Down, a website which aims at providing useful information and support to families and professionals that deal with people with Down syndrome.

Breno is multi-talented. He stars in the award winning Buddies movie and has spoken at numerous national and international conferences. He has become an expert in Judo. He became the first person with Down syndrome in the Americas to achieve the first degree black belt degree and has since achieved his 2nd and 3rd degree belts. He has numerous Judo accomplishment and is currently

a member of the Clube de Regatas do Flamengo Judo team (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). Furthermore, he is an athlete leader at Special Olympics and is also a member of the board of Special Olympics Brazil.

Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Brazil to the United Nations

Ambassador Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti is the Permanent Representative of Brazil to the United Nations since July 2007. At the UN, she led the Brazilian Delegation to the Security Council during 2010 and 2011 and presided over the Council in February 2011. She has also led the Brazilian Delegation to the Economic and Social Council and served as Chair of the UN Peacebuilding Commission Country Configuration for Guinea-Bissau since 2009.

Prior to her current position, she has served in numerous capacities including Director-General for

International Organizations at the Ministry of External Relations, Director-General for Human Rights and Social Issues at the Ministry of External Relations, and Minister Counselor at the Mission of Brazil to the UN. She has also served as Lecturer on History of Political Thought at the “Insituto Rio Ranco”, the Brazilian Diplomatic Academy.

She graduated from Brazil’s Diplomatic Academy, the “Rio Branco Institute”, received a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the “Centro Universitário do Distrito Federal” (UDF), Brasília, DF, and concluded a postgraduate program in Economics at the University of Brasília. She completed the Advanced Studies Course at the Rio Branco Institute with the thesis “Natural Gas in the relations between Brazil and Bolivia”, in 1995.

Divisional Human Resources Manager, Wegmans Food Market, Inc. – Cherry Hill, New Jersey

Ruth Ann Virgil is currently a Divisional Human Resources Manager for seven stores in New Jersey at Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. She has a team of HR Representatives responsible for advocating and providing incredible service to over 3500 employees in New Jersey. She has been in human resources and with Wegmans since 1988. Ruth Ann has held various roles in her career at Wegmans including Employee Representative and Corporate Humans Resources Coordinator. She assisted in opening seventeen Wegmans stores throughout New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Her responsibilities include strategic planning, recruitment/staffing, employee training and development, compliance and employee relations.

She has a B.S. degree from Nazareth College in Rochester, New York with a major in Business Administration and a minor in Marketing.



We are pleased to announce there is an opportunity for delegates to network among yourself and with several Down syndrome organizations. We ask that you visit Conference Room E (upstairs near the Café) during lunch.


Networking: Conference Room E, upstairs near Café
Food Options: Café on 2nd floor of United Nations North Lawn Building (where this conference is located). Cash only.

Outside the UN – plenty of options in the immediate vicinity from delis to restaurants
Please note: The Coffee Shop located in the Visitors Lobby, lower level is temporarily closed

Leaving and Returning to the United Nations

If you leave the United Nations complex, you will need to return through the Main Visitor’s Lobby. You will be required to go through security each time your return.




UN Stores

UN Bookshop: Visitors Lobby , Lower Level UN Gift Shop: Visitors Lobby, Lower Level


1st Floor

Map of North Lawn Building

2nd Floor

“Let Us In – I Want To Work!”
Global Video Event in partnership with 62 countries http://www.ds-int.org/let-us-in-i-want-to-work

Langdon Down Centre, 2A Langdon Park, Teddington TW11 9PS, United Kingdom

Reg Charity No. 1091843 Reg Company No. 4327941

T: +44 (0)20 8614 5124 E: contact@ds-int.org W: www.ds-int.org

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