Mabel van Oranje is a serial entrepreneur for social change working globally to advance equality, freedom and justice. Over the last decade, she has played a catalytic role in the global movement to end child marriage, including the creation and growth of three entities central to supporting girls’ futures: Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage (2011), the Girls First Fund (2018) and VOW for Girls (2018).
After ten years as Board Chair, Mabel took on the role of Girls Not Brides Global Champion in 2021. In her current role, she draws on some 30 years of experience as a social justice campaigner and movement-builder to continue to accelerate global efforts to end child marriage.
Mabel is a board member of Fondation Chanel, the Sigrid Rausing Trust, and VOW for Girls (Chair). She is also an advisor to Apolitical Academy Global, Co-Impact’s Gender Fund, Global Witness and The Elders.
Mabel started her professional career as founder and executive director of the European Action Council for Peace in the Balkans (1993). She joined the Open Society Foundations (OSF) in 1997, first as director of the Brussels office and then becoming OSF’s International Advocacy Director in 2003. Between 2008 and 2012, she was the first CEO of The Elders. Mabel helped to found the Dutch foundation War Child (1995), the global NGO coalition “Publish What You Pay” (2002) and the Independent Commission on Turkey (2004).
The World Economic Forum named Mabel one of its Global Leaders for Tomorrow (2003) and one of its Young Global Leaders (2005). Mabel received a Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship (2014), the John Diefenbaker Defender of Human Rights and Freedom Award (2014) and the ICRW Champions for Change Award for Innovation (2015) for her work with Girls Not Brides. She accepted the Dutch Geuzenpenning on behalf of Girls Not Brides in 2018. In 2018 and 2019, Mabel was included in Apolitical’s Gender Equality Top 100.
Mabel lives in London with her two daughters. You can follow her tweets @MabelvanOranje.