Ms. Ligia Bolivar was the Director of the Centre for Human Rights at the Andres Bello Catholic University from 1999 until 2018, where she also taught undergraduate and graduate programs in the area of human rights. She currently remains an associate researcher at the Center. She studied Sociology at Andres Bello Catholic University (Caracas) and completed her post graduate studies in Human Rights at Universidad Central de Venezuela.
In 1982, she obtained a grant from the International Human Rights Internship Program which allowed her to train as an intern with the International League for Human Rights in New York. From 1987 – 1988, she worked as Regional Liaison Officer for Latin America and the Caribbean, Spain and Portugal at Amnesty International, International Secretariat in London.
She is the founder of the Venezuelan Program for Education – Action on Human Rights (Provea) and co-founder of the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL, Washignton DC) and the International Council on Human Rights Policy (London – Geneva).
In the public sector she worked in the Ministry of Justice and was called to assume the position of Manager for Participation of Civil Society in the Judicial Reform Project of the Supreme Court in Venezuela.
Her voluntary activity includes numerous training workshops for human rights activists in various countries of Latin America, the Caribbean, USA, the Philippines and Egypt. She also serves as a Visiting Professor of Human Rights in universities across Latin America and Europe.
Since 1992, she has participated in hearings before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. She has also participated as an expert in consultations of the the United Nations human rights system in New York and Geneva, as well as in meetings of UN treaty bodies and Human Rights Council. She was also member of the Board of Trustees of the Voluntary Fund for Technical Cooperation in the Field of Human Rights at the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, between 2001 and 2004.
In 1992 she was honoured with the Leonidas Proaño Human Rights Award, by Latin American Association for Human Rights. In 1996 she received an award by the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (now Human Rights First) and in 2019 received Amnesty International’s Flame of Hope.
In 2019, she founded AlertaVenezuela, an International human rights analysis and advocacy team dedicated to produce information on human rights, humanitarian emergency, organized crime and institutional crisis in Venezuela.
During the Winter 2017, she was Scholar in Residence at the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice, New York University. She is currently a Fellow of the Global South at Dejusticia in Bogotá.
Since 2013 she has been involved in ICNL’s projects in Venezuela and participated in activities organized by ICNL in Honduras and New York.