Amy E. Pope has been selected to serve as the next Director General of the United Nations International Organization for Migration (IOM), succeeding Director General António Vitorino who has served in this role for five years.
Ms. Pope becomes the first woman to lead IOM in its more than 70-year history, and will assume the duties of Director General for a five-year term beginning on 1 October 2023.
Ms. Pope, who began her appointment as IOM’s Deputy Director General for Management and Reform in September 2021, was nominated by the United States. The Department of State said Ms. Pope’s election “reflects a broad endorsement by member states of her vision to keep people at the heart of IOM’s mission, while implementing key governance and budget reforms to ensure IOM is prepared to meet the challenges it faces”.
During her tenure as Deputy Director General, Ms. Pope implemented a series of budgetary, management and administrative reforms to optimize IOM’s field delivery and risk management, enhanced internal justice outcomes and operational results, and strengthen coordination with the United Nations system.
Prior to joining IOM, Ms. Pope served as the Senior Advisor on Migration to President Biden in 2021, Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Homeland Security Advisor from 2015-2017, and as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director on Transborder Security from 2013-2015.
At the White House, she developed and implemented comprehensive strategies to manage migration surges, address trafficking in persons, respond to the Zika and Ebola outbreaks, and prepare communities to react to climate crises. Since then, she has continued to promote dialogue on global migration challenges through her academic writing and work with Chatham House. She has also occupied positions at the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Senate and was a Partner in the London-based law firm Schillings.
Ms. Pope has guided government entities and private sector organizations through organizational change, working with them to better strategize, innovate, and manage risk. She has a strong record of developing staff and building empowered and diverse teams to achieve change. In addition, she has exceptional experience building partnerships and promoting collaboration, working with multilateral organizations, governments, and community stakeholders to develop and execute policies on migration, refugee resettlement, and countering violent extremism.
Ms. Pope graduated magna cum laude from the Duke University School of Law with a Juris Doctor and has a BA in Political Science (with Honors) from the Haverford College in Pennsylvania.