Dr. Scilla Elworthy (England)
Founder Oxford Research Group and Peace Direct, Co-Founder RWRW
“Thrilled to hear about the launch of the Theatre of Transformation Academy – just the thing to bring together the formidable people and organisations working in peace missions, and in Women’s Voices Visions and Wisdom workshops and as part of Rising Women Rising World’s governance constellation – all striving to be of more concrete and effective support to a world that works for all. Under the wise guidance of our beloved colleague Dr Rama Mani, I know that Theatre of Transformation is ready to grow into a transformative community, to be of greater service to humanity, and to offer its catalytic process to transform crises and initiate visionary change projects in a world that needs it badly.”
Dr. Scilla Elworthy is the founder of the Oxford Research Group (founded in 1982), and its director for 20 years, developing effective dialogue between nuclear weapons policy-makers worldwide and their critics. This work included a series of dialogues between Chinese, Russian and western nuclear scientists and military which formed the basis for later treaties, and for which she was three times nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. http://www.oxfordresearchgroup.org.uk/
Scilla founded Peace Direct in 2002 to fund, promote and learn from local peace-builders in conflict areas, leading to the acceptance by the UN of the value and cost effectiveness of ‘locally-led’ initiatives. Peace Direct was voted ‘Best New Charity’ in 2005. She was awarded the Niwano Peace Prize in 2003, and the Lifetime Achievement Award by Voice of a Woman in 2013.
Before this, Scilla was chair of Kupugani, the nutrition education NGO in South Africa, and helped establish the Market Theatre in Johannesburg, set up the Minority Rights Group in France, for whom she produced the first report on Female Genital Mutilation, and wrote UNESCO’s submission to the United Nations Mid-Decade Conference on Women in 1980. From 2005, She was adviser to Peter Gabriel, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Sir Richard Branson in setting up ‘The Elders’ – an independent group of global leaders who work together for peace and human rights. Bryan Adams photographed her for the Modern Muses exhibition in the National Portrait Gallery in 2009. She was director of programmes for the World Peace Festival in Berlin August 2011, and programme co-ordinator for the Celebrate Life Festival near Bremen in 2012.
Scilla is chair of the Civil Society sector of the Hanwang Forum in China, a platform to enable China to drive the development of an inclusive, ethical, resilient global society at scale and with a sense of urgency. She is a Councillor of the World Future Council, patron of Gender Rights and Equality Action Trust, Voice of a Woman, and Oxford Research Group; adviser to MasterPeace; a member of the International Advisory Council of the Institute for Economics and Peace and of the Steering Committee of PAX, a service to help prevent wars and genocides. She is the founder of the Bee School, to provide skills to young people who want to serve the planet; and adviser to the DO School in Hamburg, offering training, mentoring, and education for outstanding emerging social entrepreneurs to kick-start their own ventures all around the world. Scilla advises the executive leadership teams of selected companies who want to make a positive contribution to the planet.
She is a proud mother of Polly Jess McLean, step mother of Leigh, Jay, Shirley, Sophie and Pippa, and grandmother of Pearl Mai Mary, Wolfetone and Rainer.