United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced today the appointment of Sandra Mitchell of the United States as Deputy Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) at the level of Assistant Secretary-General.
Ms. Mitchell succeeds Margot Ellis of the United States, to whom the Secretary-General and the UNRWA Commissioner-General are grateful for her dedicated service to the Palestine refugees over the past five years.
Currently Vice-President of International Programs of the International Rescue Committee, Ms. Mitchell brings to the position nearly 20 years of experience in international peacekeeping, human rights, humanitarian and electoral field missions, including seven years with the United Nations notably in senior management roles at UNRWA from 2011 to 2013 as Director of Operations, Jordan, and Chief of Staff. She spent four years as Director of Elections with the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) and Chief Humanitarian Affairs Officer of the United Nation’s Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) in 2006.
Ms. Mitchell started her career in the legal field with a commercial firm and subsequently in senior roles with the American Bar Association and International Human Rights Law Group. She joined the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and held progressively responsible positions from 1996 to 2000. She alternated between OSCE and the International Rescue Committee in various roles, culminating as Vice-President for Government Relations and Advocacy of the International Rescue Committee from 2002 and 2004, followed by an appointment as Chief of Party on a human rights and legal reform project in Cambodia with East-West Management Institute.
Ms. Mitchell holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Washington State University and a Juris Doctorate from Oklahoma City University School of Law.
Born in 1962, she is married.