Elizabeth Donkervoort, Program Director for East Asia, joined ABA ROLI in November 2020. Prior to joining ABA, Ms. Donkervoort was Senior Program Manager for Northeast Asia at the International Republican Institute (IRI). She was also an advisor to the Institute’s Closed Society and Civil Society communities of practice, providing strategic advice and technical direction to programs around the globe and represented IRI in thematic working groups and consortium meetings.
Ms. Donkervoort is an expert in grassroots organization, with a focus on capacity building, strategic planning, and security in highly restrictive environments. For five years she was based in Hong Kong where she oversaw IRI’s civil society capacity building programs in the People’s Republic of China and Laos People’s Democratic Republic (2015-2016). While at IRI, Ms. Donkervoort developed the Institute’s largest collection of training curriculum and resources for activists, organizations, and citizen movements; helped develop security operations for closed societies; and trained Institute staff on conducting digital programs during the pandemic. Prior to IRI, Ms. Donkervoort administered Freedom House’s Emergency Assistance Program, providing support to threatened human rights defenders and civil society organizations around the globe.
Ms. Donkervoort is admitted to the bar in both Alberta, Canada and New York, USA and worked at Brownlee LLP as a member of their Municipal Law Practice, providing legal advice and assistance to local governments in Canada and representing clients before all levels of court up to the Court of Appeal, as well as administrative tribunals. Ms. Donkervoort received her JD and Master of Asia Pacific Policy Studies from the University of British Colombia (UBC) and an Honours Bachelor degree from the University of Toronto.