Who is Ellen Firestone?
Ellen Firestone is a Senior Business Executive with over 30 years of management and consulting experience in corporate and non-profit organizations including Philips Lumileds, Dun & Bradstreet, Simon Eye, Greater Philadelphia Cares, AT&T, and Lucent Technologies. She holds two master’s degrees, one in Business Administration (MBA) and the other in Transpersonal Studies – the study of health and human potential and a BS in Accounting.
After attending a Youth for Human Rights Summit with her son at UCLA in 2007, Ellen’s passion for human rights education began. At that first Summit, she learned about the 30 human rights that belong to everyone and heard survivors speak in detail about horrific violations they experienced like torture and human trafficking. She could not believe these types of things were happening in our world. It sounded so barbaric—man’s inhumanity to man. Ellen knew something drastic had to be done and immediately went into action “to make the Universal Declaration of Human Rights well known” but more than that, she enabled people to do something about it with her simple yet effective workshop called Human Rights: from Education to Action.
Back in 1948 after the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the United Nations, the UN General Assembly called upon all Member countries to publicize the text of the Declaration and “to cause it to be disseminated, displayed, read and expounded principally in schools and other educational institutions…” Ellen has taken this to heart.
For over 12 years, Ellen has delivered workshops and lectures at schools, churches, corporations, universities, the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, and the United Nations Headquarters in NY. She has a growing list of human rights contacts around the globe and across the USA.
Ellen Firestone has worked as an International Human Rights Ambassador with United for Human Rights for over a decade. She currently hosts the Know Your 30 Rights podcast series where she interviews key advocates for each of the UDHR articles.
Ellen also serves or has served as:
- National Council Member for the United Nations Association of the United States (UNA-USA) and Co-Chaired the Partnerships and Collaborations Committee for the 2018-2020 term
- Board of Directors of the United Nations Association of Greater Philadelphia (UNA-GP) and chaired the Human Rights Committee (2017-2021)
- Advisory Board of Global Education Motivators (GEM)
- Advisory Board of Dignity Rights International (DGI)
In April 2018, Ellen received the President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA) for her work with Human Rights education. She has also received letters of commendation from the US Senators from her home state of Delaware, Senator Christopher A. Coons, and Senator Thomas R. Carper as well as President Trump.
In December 2021, she received the Human Rights Award from Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI) during their 20th Anniversary celebration for her dedication to their educational mission.
One of the quotes that inspires her is: “The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good [people] to do nothing.” – Edmund Burke, British and Irish Statesman, Economist, and Philosopher
Ellen’s goal is to get enough people into action promoting and protecting these rights so that we truly have a fair and free world for all. In addition to bringing each of the human rights to life, she guarantees it will bring participants more to life as well.
You are invited to join her!