Natalie Samarasinghe

Natalie serves as the chief speechwriter in English for the President of the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

She is on sabbatical from her role as Executive Director of the United Nations Association – UK, where she has worked since 2006. The first woman to hold this post, Natalie had overall responsibility for UNA-UK’s programmes, with particular focus on advocacy, strategic communications, human rights, peace and security, and UN reform, including the Together First campaign on the Organization’s 75th anniversary in 2020.

Natalie is a regular commentator on UN issues, and has edited or contributed to publications including the SAGE Major Work on the UN, The Oxford Handbook on the United Nations and the Climate 2020 series. In 2013, she co-founded the 1 for 7 Billion campaign for a more transparent and inclusive process to select the UN Secretary-General. In 2018, she was awarded a prize by the Global Challenges Foundation for a proposal to open up UN decision-making and delivery to external stakeholders. 

Natalie has degrees in modern history from the University of Oxford and in human rights from the London School of Economics. An Austrian citizen, she is fluent in German, and has working knowledge of French.