Mabel van Oranje

Board Chair, Girls Not Brides

Skoll Awardee


A global advocate for freedom, justice and development for two decades, Mabel van Oranje is the initiator and chair of ‘Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage’. She is also co-founder and the executive chair of the European Council on Foreign Relations. She is a member of the (advisory) boards of the Coalition for the International Criminal Court, Crisis Action, Global Witness, the Malala Fund, the Open Society Foundations and The Elders.

In 1993, Mabel founded the European Action Council for Peace in the Balkans and was its CEO until 1997. In 1997, she joined the Open Society Foundations in Brussels as Executive Director, becoming OSF’s London-based International Advocacy Director in 2003. From 2008 until 2012, she was the first CEO of The Elders.

Mabel helped found the Dutch foundation War Child (1995), the global NGO coalition ‘Publish What You Pay’ (2002) and the Independent Commission on Turkey (2004). She has been actively engaged in the fight against HIV/AIDS and in global efforts that led to the establishment of the International Criminal Court in 2002.

Mabel holds masters degrees in Economics and Political Science (cum laude) from the University of Amsterdam. In 2005, the World Economic Forum named her one of its Young Global Leaders. In 2014, she received a Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship and the John Diefenbaker Defender of Human Rights and Freedom Award for her work with Girls Not Brides.