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Longtime Activist Brings Wealth of Campaign Experience, Success to Human Rights Organization

Contact: Sharon Singh, [email protected], 202-675-8579, @spksingh

(Washington, D.C.) — Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) today announced its new head of campaigns and programs, Michelle Ringuette, a veteran campaign and communications strategist. Michelle will assume her responsibilities on July 1, 2012 and be based in the organization's Washington, D.C. office.

Ringuette joins AIUSA with an extensive background in domestic and international advocacy, including experience in labor, corporate accountability, women's rights, social justice, economic rights, educational and political campaigns. Most recently, she served as the assistant to the president for strategic initiatives at the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), where she oversaw research and strategic campaigns as a member of the executive team. Previously, Ringuette was a member of SEIU's senior leadership as director of external communications. In that capacity, she played a pivotal role in the union’s work to move forward a progressive agenda. She also served as senior international program director at Catholics for Choice.

"Michelle's passion for advancing the cause of equality, through proven success mobilizing the grassroots and unmasking injustice, is an undeniable boon to Amnesty International," said Suzanne Nossel, executive director of Amnesty International USA. "She is a change agent, and we look forward to her vigor in advancing Amnesty International’s agenda."

"From my earliest days as a teen activist, I have been committed to the mission of Amnesty International," said Ringuette. "It is an extraordinary privilege to be given this opportunity. I will bring to it my full experience and passion working for social justice and human rights."

In addition, Ringuette co-founded the ALECexposed Network, which uncovered the American Legislative Exchange Council's voter suppression efforts and its role in advancing state legislation to benefit its corporate members. ALEC has backed passage of the "stand your ground law" invoked in the Trayvon Martin shooting in Florida. Through the work of ALECexposed, many major multinational companies, includingKraft and CocaCola, ended their involvement with ALEC.

Ringuette holds degrees in English and Philosophy from Boston College, and she conducted graduate work in psychology at Harvard University. She and her partner live with their 5 year-old son in Washington, D.C.

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 3 million supporters, activists and volunteers in more than 150 countries campaigning for human rights worldwide. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.