International Development Law Organization

Our People

IDLO is comprised of international legal and development professionals. We combine dedication with expertise in a variety of legal systems to promote access to justice and improve the lives of the most vulnerable.


Irene Khan is Director-General of the International Development Law Organization (IDLO). The first woman to hold this office, she was elected by Member Parties on November 17, 2011 and took up her position formally on January 1, 2012.

An international thought leader on human rights, gender and social justice issues, Irene Khan was Secretary General of Amnesty International from 2001 - 2009. Prior to that, she worked for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees for 21 years at headquarters and in various field operations. She was Visiting Professor at the State University of New York Law School (Buffalo) in 2011.

Ms. Khan sits on the boards of several international human rights and development organizations. She is the recipient of numerous honorary degrees and prestigious awards, including the City of Sydney Peace Prize in 2006 for her work to end violence against women and girls. Her book, The Unheard Truth: Poverty and Human Rights, has been translated into seven languages.

Born in Bangladesh, Irene Khan studied law at the University of Manchester and Harvard Law School.

Senior Management

  • David Buchholz: General Counsel
  • Erwin van der Borght: Director of Programs
  • Haroun Atallah: Director of Finance and Support Services
  • Ilaria Bottigliero: Director of Research and Learning
  • Julian Fleet: Permanent Observer to the United Nations (Geneva)
  • Miguel Figuerola: Director of Human Resources and Office Support Services
  • Patrizio Civili: ‚ÄčPermanent Observer to the United Nations (New York)
  • Raul Cordenillo: Director of Strategic Communications