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December 12, 2022

Suzanne Ehlers to join USA for UNHCR as new Executive Director and CEO in January 2023

WASHINGTON, December 12, 2022 — USA for UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, announced today that its board of trustees has unanimously chosen Suzanne Ehlers as the organization’s next Executive Director and CEO. Ehlers will succeed Anne-Marie Grey on January 17, 2023. Ehlers has deep leadership experience in the transformation, scaling and growth of development and humanitarian organizations. 

image of new USA for UNHCR Executive Director and CEO Suzanne Ehlers

"After a comprehensive search process, the board is pleased to have identified Suzanne as the next leader of this powerful organization," said Mark Wallace, Chair, Board of Directors for USA for UNHCR. “In the past decade, the number of refugees globally has doubled, and to help them, USA for UNHCR has steadily driven revenue growth and expanded its impact. Suzanne is a systems thinker with experience in grantmaking and a track record of approachable leadership,” Wallace continued. "She brings a wealth of global experience and a commitment to building partnerships, employee excellence and has been a champion of diversity and inclusion in all past leadership roles."

“I’m honored and excited to lead this exceptional organization of dedicated and talented professionals,” said Ehlers. “USA for UNHCR has built an understanding of refugee needs with a growing audience of supporters, donors and partners — all of which have led to real-life impact for refugees. I look forward to working with USA for UNHCR staff and stakeholders to further that momentum.”

Ehlers currently serves as CEO of Malala Fund, working closely with co-founders Malala and Ziauddin Yousafzai to create a world where all girls can attain an education. Prior to Malala Fund, Ehlers was President and CEO of PAI, a global advocacy leader in protecting and promoting the reproductive health and rights of women and girls. Ehlers has held numerous board and advisory positions and, early in her career, served as a Peace Corps volunteer. She holds a bachelor's degree in Government from Cornell University.

Anne-Marie Grey, who has served as Executive Director and CEO since 2014, expressed confidence in the board's choice. "USA for UNHCR’s mission to protect refugees and empower them with hope and opportunity has never been more important," said Grey. "I'm confident Suzanne will lead the organization successfully to continue to help meet the enormous need that refugees and displaced persons face today."

Under Grey’s leadership, USA for UNHCR grew revenues to $200M from $3M. 

USA for UNHCR is primed to further accelerate the growth of awareness and funding to support and empower refugees worldwide.

About USA for UNHCR

USA for UNHCR protects refugees and empowers them with hope and opportunity. Supporting UNHCR – the UN Refugee Agency – and its partners, we provide lifesaving essentials including shelter, water, food, safety and protection. Around the world, we help refugees survive, recover and build a better future. Established by concerned American citizens, USA for UNHCR is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. For more information, visit

Media Contact: Nicholas Feeney,