On June 01, 2001, UN
Secretary-General Kofi Annan appointed Stephen Lewis as his Special
Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa.
Mr. Lewis’ work with the UN has shaped the past two decades
of his career. From 1995 to 1999, Mr. Lewis was Deputy Executive
Director of UNICEF at the organization’s global headquarters
in New York. He was first appointed as Special Representative for
UNICEF in 1990. In that capacity, he spoke and travelled regularly,
acting as a spokesperson for UNICEF's passionate advocacy of the
rights and needs of children, especially children of the developing
In 1997, in addition to his work at UNICEF, Mr. Lewis was appointed
by the Organization of African Unity to a Panel of Eminent Personalities
to Investigate the Genocide in Rwanda. The ‘Rwanda Report’
was issued in June of 2000.
In 1993, he became coordinator for the international study -- known
as the Graca Machel study -- on the "Consequences of Armed
Conflict on Children". The report was tabled in the United
Nations in 1995.
From 1984 through 1988, Stephen Lewis was Canadian Ambassador to
the United Nations. In this capacity, he chaired the Committee that
drafted the Five-Year UN Programme on African Economic Recovery.
He also chaired the first International Conference on Climate Change,
which drew up the first comprehensive policy on global warming.
Prior to his nomination as Ambassador, Mr. Lewis was a noted radio
and television commentator, and during this time he also became
a prominent labor relations arbitrator.
In the 1960s and 1970s, Stephen Lewis was an elected representative
to the Ontario Legislature, becoming leader of the New Democratic
Party and leader of the Official Opposition.
Mr. Lewis holds 18 honorary degrees from Canadian universities.
In May 2003, in recognition of outstanding contributions to public
health, Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health
honoured Mr. Lewis with the Dean’s Distinguished Service Award.
And in 2003, he was appointed a Companion of the Order of Canada,
Canada’s highest honour for lifetime achievement.
Stephen Lewis is married to Michele Landsberg, feminist columnist
with the Toronto Star; they have three grown children; Ilana, Avi
Recently, Mr. Lewis created the Stephen Lewis Foundation (www.stephenlewisfoundation.org)
to help ease the pain of HIV/AIDS in Africa.