LGBTIQ NGOs from Malta & Gozo meet U.S. Special Envoy Randy Berry

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LGBTIQ NGOs from Malta & Gozo meet U.S. Special Envoy Randy BerryLGBTIQ NGOs from Malta and Gozo gathered today at San Anton Palace to meet Randy Berry, the U.S. Special Envoy for Human Rights of LGBT persons.

During the event, which was hosted by the President’s Foundation for the Wellbeing of Society and organised in collaboration with Gender Liberation (GL), an NGO that connects, informs and empowers gender diverse individuals and communities in Malta and Gozo, various NGOs (including MGRM, Drachma, and LGBTI+ Gozo) discussed and shared with Mr Berry the work they’ve carried out so far and issues that concern them.

Representing GL, Pyt Farrugia highlighted the findings from a report, facilitated by GL and the PFWS, on the wellbeing of LGBTIQ communities. The report was formulated through consultation with LGBTIQ organisations working in Malta and Gozo, and was presented to US Special Envoy Mr Berry and U.S. Ambassador to Malta Gina Abercrombie-Winstanley who attended the event.

Randy W. Berry was brought over to Malta by the US Embassy, he is the US State Department’s first-ever Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBT Persons. He arrived in his new post on April 13, 2015.

Prior to serving as the Special Envoy, he served as the United States Consul General in Amsterdam. He was United States Consul General in Auckland, New Zealand from 2009 to 2012, and prior to that, Deputy Chief of Mission of the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu, Nepal from 2007 to 2009.

Mr Berry’s career with the State Department has also taken him to postings in Bangladesh, Egypt, Uganda (twice), and South Africa, as well as Washington DC. Mr. Berry holds a State Department Superior Honor Award, and is a nine-time Meritorious Honor Award recipient. He speaks Spanish and Arabic.

Mr Berry was raised on a family cattle ranch in rural Custer County, Colorado. He is a graduate of Bethany College of Lindsborg, Kansas, and was a Rotary Scholar at the University of Adelaide, South Australia. Before joining the Foreign Service in 1993, Berry worked as an international training manager for America West Airlines in Phoenix, Arizona.

Photograph: DOI/Clifton Fenech

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