Topics: Peace and Human Rights
Social Change
Environment and Climate Change
Regional focus: Global
Sub-Saharan Africa
Origin: South Africa
Fellowship: Richard von Weizsäcker Fellow

Kumi Naidoo is a human rights and environmental activist from South Africa. He served as Executive Director of Greenpeace International from 2009 to 2016 and Secretary General of Amnesty International from 2018 to 2020.

Currently, Kumi Naidoo is Honorary Professor of Practice at the Thunderbird School of Management at Arizona State University, Visiting Fellow at University of Oxford, and Honorary Fellow at Magdalen College. He serves on the International Council of Transparency International, and is a Global Ambassador of Africans Rising for Justice, Peace and Dignity.

From 1998 to 2008, Kumi Naidoo was Secretary General and CEO of CIVICUS World Alliance for Citizen Participation, and from 1996 to 1998, he served as Executive Director of the South African National NGO Coalition (SANGOCO), the umbrella body for the NGO community. In 1994, he was one of the official spokespersons of the Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa’s first democratic elections and directed the training of all electoral staff in the country. During the time of apartheid, he was deeply involved in the mass mobilizations against the apartheid regime.

Kumi Naidoo studied law and political science at the University of Durban-Westville and received his PhD from the University of Oxford, Magdalen College.

Last updated: 2021