International Development Law Organization

Jan Beagle elected as new IDLO Director-General

13 Nov 2019

Rome, November 13, 2019 – Jan Beagle was elected as IDLO’s next Director-General, succeeding Irene Khan as her final term concludes at the end of this year.

Jan Beagle was elected today to serve as the next Director-General of the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) by its Assembly of Parties, the Organization’s highest governing body made up of 37 Member Parties.

Ms. Beagle, a diplomat from New Zealand and senior international civil servant of the United Nations (UN), brings some forty years of experience of multilateral diplomacy, working across the peace and security, development, human rights, management, gender and organizational reform sectors.

She succeeds Irene Khan whose tenure as Director-General spanned two terms over eight years beginning in January 2012. IDLO’s first Asian and female Director-General, Ms. Khan led the Organization through a period of rejuvenation and expansive growth.

“I am proud of IDLO’s progress over the past eight years as a champion of justice, supporting legal reforms and institution-building, working in conflict affected countries and empowering people, especially women and girls, to claim their rights. I want to thank IDLO Member Parties, our partners and donors and all my colleagues for their support, which has helped to propel the Organization to new heights. The continued resilience and relevance of IDLO’s mandate is evident in the face of today’s global challenges, and I am confident that my successor will continue to take IDLO forward with the important work of advancing access to justice and the rule of law,” said Irene Khan. 

Ms. Beagle has been the Special Adviser to the UN Secretary-General on System-wide Implementation of Chief Executive Board decisions since September 2019. Previously, she served as UN Under-Secretary-General for Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance, Deputy Executive Director of UNAIDS, Deputy Director-General of the UN Office at Geneva, and Assistant Secretary-General for Human Resources Management.

Throughout her career, Ms. Beagle has played a leadership role in the interagency bodies of the UN system and spearheaded the development and implementation of programs and approaches to improve and accelerate diversity and inclusion, women’s empowerment and rights-based approaches.

Ms. Beagle began her career in the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts in History and International Relations from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. She is married with three daughters.

IDLO was founded as a training institute in 1983 and established as an intergovernmental organization in 1988. Since then, it has emerged as the only intergovernmental organization exclusively devoted to the rule of law and sustainable development. 

Today, IDLO enjoys a geographically and thematically diverse program portfolio across over 30 countries and a vast alumni network of over 20,000 legal professionals. On the international stage it is recognized as a leading advocate for Sustainable Development Goal 16 and justice for women.

Ms. Beagle is expected to begin her term as IDLO’s Director-General in January 2020.


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