Déirdre Clancy "is Co-Director of the International Refugee Rights Initiative and is based in New York, USA. She was formerly the Director of the International Refugee Program at Human Rights First (formerly the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights). Before joining Human Rights First, Déirdre worked with the police and human rights program at the Council of Europe's Human Rights Division and on monitoring commitments to human rights at the Secretary General's Monitoring Unit. Prior to that she was founding director of the first legal assistance service for refugees in Ireland, heading advocacy efforts around the passage of Ireland’s first refugee legislation and the development of asylum policy and practice. Déirdre received her European Masters Degree in Human Rights and Democratization from the Universities of Padua, Italy (1998) and Robert Schumann University, Strasbourg, France (1998). She holds an L.L.B. (law degree) with honors from Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland (1994). Déirdre has published articles on human rights, legal and environmental issues in a range of political and professional publications and has lectured on human rights and immigration law in Ireland and the United Kingdom."