Transitions in WILPF
I wish we had more time for the giddy chatter we shared on my first night at the Vidyapeeth. Instead, her nights were filled with ad hoc meetings and our mornings were filled with incredible sight-seeing journeys coordinated by the Gujurat branch.
I've known Susi for seven incredible years. She came to a US Section board meeting when she was transitioning from being the director of our Reaching Critical Will project to being the head of our UN office. The leadership and vision she exhibited seven years ago have inspired me to continue putting my volunteer time into WILPF. We share a common belief in the power and need for our incredible League.
We WILPFers talk sometimes about the pressure put on our staff, but I don't know if we fully understand it. Susi has been the only full-time staff person in the Geneva office for the last 1.5 years. She represented WILPF at the UN in Geneva, pushing open the Conference on Disarmament to allow space for NGOs to speak, coordinated our sections, participated on the Executive Committee, and oversaw our UN office in New York. I've seen the toll this has taken on her emotionally and physically. So, when she announced her resignation, though I knew it was a blow for WILPF, I recognized it as a healthy step for my dear friend.
I also believe that our League's true strength lies in the coordinated efforts of thousands of women across the world, not in any one individual leader. Though Susi is among our brightest, shining stars, she's allowed us to develop individually and collectively so that we can take the next step, building our League to even greater heights as we approach our 100th anniversary. Plus, she's still a member, so I remain hopeful that she'll continue to be active in the years to come.
Below is a short video in honor of Susi's departure. It was compiled by our UN Office Director Anjie Rosga. We had hoped to surprise Susi by showing it at the IB meeting, but technical difficulties made that impossible. I can't bring myself to repeat the title Anjie gave the piece, because I refuse to believe this is an end; rather, another door has opened.