Photo by John Nelson Photography
Serra Sippel has been president of the Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE) since 2007, leading the organization's advocacy efforts to advance the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and girls globally through the development and implementation of U.S. policies. Most recently, she has led CHANGE’s efforts to secure executive action on access to safe abortion for women raped in conflict. This effort has garnered support from U.S. and international NGOs, civil society in the global south, and donor nations including the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. Serra has been an advocate of women’s rights in the U.S. and globally for 20 years.
Prior to joining CHANGE, she was the international program director at Catholics for Choice, advancing the sexual and reproductive and other human rights of women and girls around the world and at the United Nations. Serra has also been involved in the fight for women's rights in the U.S. through her work with homeless women and children in Texas, and on behalf of women incarcerated in the state of Indiana. Serra holds a master's degree in religion, with an emphasis on peace and justice. She is the author of numerous articles and other publications on sexual and reproductive health and rights, has spoken at international conferences, and is sought after for commentary on U.S. foreign policy and sexual and reproductive health and rights. She is a member of the International Steering Committee for the Universal Access to Female Condoms Joint Programme and a member of the National Domestic Violence and HIV/AIDS Advisory Committee.