About Us/Join Us

Amnesty International (AI):

Amnesty International is a global movement of more than 7 million supporters, members, and activists in more than 150 countries and territories that campaign to end grave abuses of human rights. AI is a non-partisan organization founded in UK in 1961 to promote human rights worldwide. AI works on behalf of those whose fundamental human rights have been denied, harassed or incarcerated for the non-violent expression of their beliefs.AI promotes include (but not limited to) judicial due process, abolition of torture and abolition of the death penalty. AI mission is for every person to enjoy all the rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml 
AI is independent of any government, political ideology, economic interest, or religion and are funded mainly by our membership and public donations.

The International Secretariat of AI (www.amnesty.org) is responsible for the majority of the Organization’s research and leads our campaign.  The Headquarter is located at: 1 Easton Street, London, WC1X0DW, UK Tel. +44-20-741-35500
Amnesty International - USA (AI-USA):
The Headquarter of U.S. section of Amnesty International (www.amnestyusa.org) is located in New York City, New York at: 311 W. 43rd St., 7th Floor, New York, NY, 10036 (212-633-4160). 
The AI-USA has an office in Washington DC at: 600 Pennsylvania Ave., SE, 5th Floor, Washington DC 20003 ‭(202-509-8149‬)
The 2022-2023 Executive Team of AI-USA are listed at:
The Executive Committee makes decisions as necessary, on behalf of the full Board, in between Board meetings.
  • Paul O’Brien has been the Executive Director at Amnesty International USA, based in Washington, DC since April 2021: pobrien@aiusa.org
  • Adotei Akwei is AIUSA’s Interim Chief Membership Collaboration Officer for Amnesty International USA and he is located in DC office.
  • Marcy Bourne is AIUSA’s Chief Development Officer and she currently resides in Wake Forest, NC.
  • Julie Hong is AIUSA’s Chief IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Accessibility), People and Culture Officer. She is currently based in Washington DC office.
  • Ira Lefton is the Chief Legal and Policy Officer at Amnesty International USA. He currently lives in NY City and Philadelphia, ilefton@aiusa.org.
  • Anand Mishra is Amnesty International USA’s Interim Chief Impact Officer and he is based in Washington DC office.
  • Jean-Claude is Amnesty International USA Chief Finance and Administration Officer.   He is a Haitian-American and grow up in Brooklyn, NY. He currently resides in Fort Lauderdale, FL with his family. 
  • Rachel Ward is AIUSA’s Interim Chief Movement Building Officer leading research, campaigns and organizing teams. She is a lawyer and a member of the Law Society of England and Wales.
The 2022-2023 Board of Directors and Officers of AI-USA are listed at : 
The AI-USA elected Board of Directors develops a clear vision for the organization through policies that set goals and priorities. The Board provides stewardship for the organization; establishes appropriate and constructive working relationships with staff; and ensures the financial health of the organization through fiscal oversight and fundraising. To contact the Board please send an email to: aiboard@aiusa.org
  • Penelope Halkiadaki, Vice Chair
  • Matthew Kennis, Treasurer
  • Vibha Venkatesha, Member AT Large
  • David Yu, Deputy Treasurer
  • Christopher T. Foley, Deputy Secretary
  • RASHA ABDEL LATIF, Member At Large
  • Ali Arab, Member At Large
  • Aaron Fellmeth, Member At Large
  • Marcel Kitissou, Member At Large
  • Phyllis Pautrat, Member At Large
  • Leonard Torrealba, Member At Large
  • Robyn Linde, Member At Large
  • Rick Halperin, Member At Large

AI-USA Support & Member Services
    Phone: 1-800-AMNESTY (1-800-266-3789); Mon - Fri (9 AM - 5 PM) EST
    Email: aimember@aiusa.org
    For questions, contact:
    Midwest Area Coordinator Steering Committee: Susan Mitchell: susanfmitchell@hotmail.com
    Jennifer Estrand, Community Program Managerjestrada@aiusa.org 
    Megan Jir√≥n, Grassroots Leadership & Engagement Coordinator: mjiron@aiusa.org 
    Patrick Gregoire, Community Program Specialist: pgregoire@aiusa.org
    Aashka Merchant, Governance Officer: amerchant@aiusa.org

AI-USA National & Regional Offices

Amnesty International USA Headquarters
311 W 43rd Street, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10036
Phone: (212) 807-8400

Washington National Office & Mid-Atlantic Regional Office, Phone: (202) 544-0200
600 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, 5th Floor, Washington, DC 20003

Northeast Regional Office, 89 South Street, Suite LL01, Boston, MA 02111

Western Regional Office, 1624 Franklin Street, 
Suite 418, Oakland, CA 94612


Adopted from A beginner's guide to human rights jargon, By Ben Beaumont, London 31 July 2015, 07:32 UTC
Baffled by technical human rights terms and precise legal definitions?
You’re not alone. Here’s a quick glossary of some of the most troublesome words and phrases.
Commute means to replace a punishment, usually a death sentence, with a less severe one. For example, Amnesty called for the USA to commute to time served the 35-year jail sentence of whistleblower Chelsea Manning, who had been arrested after leaking classified government material.
 Crimes against humanity
When certain acts – including murder, torture and slavery – form part of a widespread attack on a civilian population by a state or organization. Unlike war crimes, they can take place at times of peace as well as during conflict. The Rwandan genocide of 1994 is one example of a crime against humanity.
Extrajudicial executions
Unlawful killings ordered by a government, or committed with its knowledge and support. They can be carried out by the military, police, or by civilians working with government forces. For example, Hamas forces in Gaza committed serious human rights abuses, including extrajudicial executions, torture and abductions, during the 2014 Gaza/Israel conflict.
 Freedom of expression
The right to seek, receive and share information and ideas, without fear or interference. It is closely linked with freedom of association (the right to meet with anyone you choose, for example, to form and join clubs, societies or trade unions) and the right to take part in a peaceful assembly, such as a demonstration or public meeting.
 Immunity (from prosecution)
Allows an accused person to avoid prosecution for a crime because of their job or office. Amnesty International is opposed to immunity. For example, Amnesty has called for the rejection of immunity in the Central African Republic so that people who committed crimes during conflict there are brought to justice.
Impunity is when people who have committed crimes avoid punishment. For example, there is a ‘culture of impunity’ among police in the Philippines, who are able to torture people without fear of being punished. Amnesty calls for these people to be tried and sentenced fairly, according to the law.
Prisoner of conscience
A prisoner of conscience is someone who is imprisoned because of who they are (sexual orientation, ethnic, national or social origin, language, birth, colour, sex or economic status) or their religious, political or other beliefs, and who hasn’t used or advocated violence. For example, Dr Mohammed al-Roken is a current prisoner of conscience in the United Arab Emirates, jailed for 10 years following a deeply unfair trial.
War crimes
War crimes are serious crimes committed during armed conflicts, which could include murdering prisoners of war, killing hostages, torture and destroying towns and villages. A recent example is in the Ukraine, where there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes, including torture and summary killings of prisoners.
 A version of this feature appeared in the July-September 2015 issue of Wire, Amnesty's global magazine.

Amnesty International - USA, Group #139, Madison, Wisconsin*:

We are a chapter of Amnesty International in USA (AI-USA), a non-partisan Human Rights organization working for human rights. This chapter was chartered in 1978 and is managed by volunteers. We have about 80 members and no annual membership is required to join us. But we gladly accept donation for our local expenses such as printing and shipment of our petitions to various location as specified by AI-USA.

Group 139 communicates human rights action, events, and news from Amnesty International and other human rights organizations using:

Group Websitehttp://ai-madison139.blogspot.com
Group Facebook: Amnesty International Madison, WI Group 139
Group Twitter: Madison Amnesty #139

NOTE: We do not raise or advocate donation to any of the organizations in our postings. 

To join Group 139, please contact Group Coordinator:
Azam Niroomand-Rad, PhD using her e-mail: azamnrad@gmail.com
Or call her at: (608)-698-6749. 

To learn more about Group #139, please click on the following links.
 Thank you for your interest in AI Group #139!
*Amnesty International Group 139 is a tax-exempt organization registered in the U.S.A., with registered office at 350 South Hamilton Street, Unit 501, Madison, WI  53703