Brundtland, Gro Harlem
Gro Harlem Bruntland, a former Prime Minister of Norway, is internationally known and widely respected for her leadership in global environmental and health issues and for forging connections between the two fields. Trained as a medical doctor, Bruntland served as Prime Minister of Norway three times during the 1980s and 1990s, and served as Director-General of the World Health Organization from 1998 to 2003. She is perhaps best known globally for her leadership as chair of the United Nation’s World Commission on Environment and Development, commonly called “the Bruntland Commission,” that produced the 1987 landmark report, Our Common Future. The report laid out the concepts of sustainability and sustainable development and made recommendations that led the UN to convene the 1992 Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), known as the “Earth Summit,” in Rio de Janeiro.
In 2007, Bruntland was appointed as Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General on Climate Change. The same year, she become one of the initial members of The Elders, a group of prominent world leaders organized by former South Africa President Nelson Mandela to “offer their collective influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity.” She also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the United Nations Foundation.