Chairs of the Board
While Mama Cash from 1983 till 2001 functioned more as a collective, only the biographies of the Chairs of the Board since 2001 are presented here.
Marjan Sax (Chair from 2001 – 2003)
Marjan Sax grew up in Amsterdam. She studied political science and did pioneering work in many fields of the women’s and lesbian movements from the 1970’s. She was an active member of Dolle Mina (Mad Mina, a women’s liberation group), and she was one of the founders of women’s consciousness raising groups in 1972. In 1976, she was one of the occupiers of abortion clinic Bloemenhove, which enforced legalisation of abortion i
n the Netherlands. She was also one of the initiators of the Women’s Studies department at the University of Amsterdam and later of the Lesbian Archives in Amsterdam. As Director of the Open School Amsterdam North Trial Project, she contributed to the development of new types of adult education at the end of the seventies.
She used the legacy left to her by her parents to co-found Mama Cash together with four other women in 1983. She supported Mama Cash for twenty years and held many positions, in addition to Chair of the Board: at different moments she was responsible for general policy, financial policy, PR and media, international contacts and resource mobilisation. She also founded Erfdochters, a network of women with inherited wealth.
In addition, she was a member of the Pink Thread, a group of feminist allies of the Red Thread, an organisation for sex worker rights in the 1980’s, and she worked at Stichting Vrouw & Media (Women & Media Foundation) which carried out research on the position of women journalists at newspapers. Since 1997, she is active in Vrouwen tegen Uitzetting (Women against Eviction), a cooperation of female refugees and Dutch women with the aim to enhance the position of women refugees.
She is also an author and holds positions on various boards, including Women on Web, which advocates for safe medical abortion by means of the abortion pill. Since 2003, she has been an independent advisor on ‘sensible investments in social change’ through her company, Sax Consultancy. She also operates the Donor Academy where people learn about philanthropy and how to make meaningful decisions about donating money. She received various honours, including the Zilveren Anjer (Silver Carnation) of the Prince Bernhard Fund.
Carine van den Brink (Chair from 2003 – 2007)
In her professional life, Carine is a lawyer. She received her Masters in Medicine in 1987 and her Law degree in 1989. From 1990 to 1997 she worked as an attorney for the international law firm Stibbe in Amsterdam. In 1997 she joined Pharming, one of the first biotech companies in The Netherlands, as chief legal officer. In 2000 she became senior legal counsel of Getronics. In 2002 Carine set up her own law practice focusing on emerging and growing high tech companies. In addition, Carine served on the Dutch medical disciplinary Board for many years and on the Board of many commercial companies and non-profit organisations. Carine lectures at the University of Leiden and is a frequently asked member of juries and committees to assess business plans.
At Mama Cash, Carine was a member of the Board of the Guarantee Fund from 1997 until 2002 and chaired the Board of Mama Cash from 2003 till 2007. From 2000 to 2003 she was treasurer of the Clara Wichman Foundation, a Dutch foundation that aims to improve the rights of women, by initiating legal test cases among others.
Anastasia Posadskaya-Vanderbeck (Co-chair of the Board from 2007 till 2011)
Anastasia is the Manager of UN Women’s Global Safe Cities Initiatives, including programmes in 13 major capital cities, such as Cairo, New Delhi, Kigali, Port Moresby, and Quito.
Prior to joining UN Women, she worked for ten years as a Director of the Network Women’s Programme of the Open Society Institute-New York (Soros Foundation). She was responsible for design and implementation of multi-country initiatives and programmes in the areas of violence against women, gender mainstreaming, international advocacy and policy for women’s rights, gender studies, and others. She was a founding Director of the Moscow Center for Gender Studies at the Russian Academy of Sciences and served on the Boards of Directors of the International Women’s Health Coalition (IWHC) and the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID). Anastasia was a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies (Princeton) and at the Institute for Research on Women (Rutgers University) and taught at Swarthmore College as the Julian and Virginia Cornell Distinguished Visiting Professor. In 2003-2005, she participated in the Task Force of the UN Millennium Project, which focused on issues of gender equality and education.
Anastasia is the author and editor of many publications including Women in Russia: New Era in Russian Feminism and A Revolution of Their Own: Voices of Women in Russian History. She graduated with honors from Moscow Lomonosoff University, Department of Economics and received her PhD in Economics from the Institute of Economics of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
Marjo Meijer (Co-chair from 2007-2014)
Marjo Meijer was trained as a medical doctor at the University of Amsterdam. In the early eighties, she was a lecturer on general medicine at the VU University of Amsterdam and worked as an institutional General Practitioner in the women’s prison. From 1983 to 1996, she ran her private doctor’s office in Amsterdam. She completed an MBA/MBI at Rotterdam’s Erasmus University and read Visual Arts at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy.
In the 1980’s, she was an editor of the lesbian magazine DIVA and organised a conference on lesbian women in health care. She was a co-founder of the Women’s Health Centre in Amsterdam, initiated the Platform Women and Aids, was a member of the AIDS Fund Advisory Board and compiled a book of interviews with HIV-infected women. Marjo was a member of the Pink Thread, a feminist support group for sex workers who are united in the Red Thread. She published articles on women and health care for a wide audience. She received the Isis award from the Women’s Health Centre in Amsterdam for her work in the field of women and health care.
In the 1990’s, she took on the initiative to bring Gay Games to Amsterdam in 1998 and as the Chair of the Board laid the foundations of this event. In this respect, she was honoured with a Special Award by the Federation of Gay Games for her work on this important initiative. She was a co-founder of the network of Women with Inherited Wealth, and worked as a volunteer for Mama Cash for many years, mainly in the field of resource mobilisation.
Geetanjali Misra (Co-chair from 2011- 2015)
Geetanjali Misra is the co-founder and Executive Director of CREA which is a feminist human rights organisation based in New Delhi, India.
Geeta has worked as an activist, as a grant maker, and on policy levels, on issues of sexuality, reproductive health, gender, human rights and violence against women. Before joining CREA she worked for the Ford Foundation in New Delhi and supported non- governmental organisations in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka working on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. She also co-founded SAKHI for South Asian Women in 1989, which is a non-profit organization in New York committed to ending violence against women of South Asian origin.
She serves onthe Board of Directors of Reproductive Health Matters (U.K) and Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice (Netherlands); she was the Board President of the Association for Women’s Rights in Development from 2006-2008. She writes on issues of sexuality, gender and rights, and co-edited Sexuality, Gender and Rights: Exploring Theory and Practice in South and Southeast Asia. Some of her articles include “Decriminalising Homosexuality in India” and “Sex Work Advocacy in India: The Rise of a Movement”.
Marieke van Doorninck (Co-chair from 2014-2018)
Marieke van Doorninck is a historian and works as an Advisor for Public Affairs at La Strada International, a European anti trafficking network. She has been active as chair of the board for several organisations working for sex workers rights. In 2005, as the coordinator of the ICSRE (International Committee on the Rights of Sex Workers in Europe), Marieke organised the European Conference on Sex Work, Human Rights, Labour and Migration in the European Parliament in Brussels.
Marieke was Chairperson of the Green Party (Groen Links) in the Amsterdam city council until April 2014. She has been board member of FEMNET, the gender working group of GroenLinks. She currently is Board member of ASKV/Amsterdam Support Committee for refugees, Board member of BADT/Support for homeless people in Amsterdam. Marieke has a broad publishing record covering issues of trafficking, emancipation, sex work and migrants’ rights.
Khadijah Fancy (Co-chair since 2015-2018)
Khadijah Fancy is an independent consultant, with a background in gender and women’s rights. She has worked extensively in the field of girls’ education, including work in many countries in Africa and Asia, including Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Zambia, Tanzania, Pakistan and Vietnam.
Khadijah worked at United National Development Programme (UNDP) in New York as an evaluation officer and at Camfed International as Director of External Affairs. In addition to programme and field work, Khadijah works with trusts and foundations on giving to women’s issues globally and advises NGOs on raising funds.
Myra ter Meulen (Co-chair since 2018-2020)
Myra ter Meulen works as an independent consultant on the prevention of child abuse and youth policy. She currently serves as Co-Chair on the Board of Women’s Wallet – the financial organisation that supports Women Help Women (group that advances abortion rights and medical abortion respectively)
Myra is an active member of Vrouwen Tegen Uitzetting, a group of refugee and Dutch women that strives for more humane asylum laws and policies.
Farah Salka (2018-2021)
Farah Salka is a Beirut-based Lebanese-Syrian feminist organiser. She graduated from the American University of Beirut in 2006 with an undergrad in Public Administration and Political Science. She then received her masters in Human Rights Law from the University of Malta in 2007. Farah is the founder and Executive Director of the Anti-Racism Movement (ARM) and the Migrant Community Center(s). She works on organizing with migrant communities, asylum seekers and particularly migrant women and migrant domestic workers. Her heart and mind is in organizing around issues of racism, xenophobia, the kafala system, migrant justice and labor justice.
Farah sits on the Advisory Board of The A-Project, a Lebanon-based feminist group working on gender and sexuality via an affirmative and sex-positive approach.
Nancy Jouwe 2020-
Nancy Jouwe is a lecturer, researcher, writer and public speaker, with an interest in intersectionality, colonial history, arts, heritage and intercultural dialogue. She currently pursues a PhD and teaches at University of the Arts Utrecht, and the Council on International Educational Exchange. She’s involved in several public history projects, including Mapping Slavery (2013-2021), a transnational research project that maps the Dutch colonial history of slavery. Nancy is also Chair of the Supervisory Board of BAK (Basis voor Actuele Kunst), affiliate researcher at Gender Studies (Humanities Department, Utrecht University) and co-author and editor of several publications on Dutch colonial history, including the history of slavery, the Dutch Black, Migrant and Refugee women’s movement and decolonial art praxis.
As an activist she’s been involved in the ‘80s and ‘90s with local squatters and transnational queer, indigenous, and feminist movements, incl. in SE Asia and the South Pacific. She comes from a family of political refugees that had to flee Indonesia in the beginning of the ‘60s, as her father was a political leader in the Papuan independence movement.
Nancy is Dutch and lives in the Netherlands.
Oriana López Uribe 2021-
Oriana has been a feminist activist for Sexual and Reproductive Rights and Health since she was 15 years old. Based in Mexico, she has worked for the Ministry of Health, and in various organisations and networks to develop strategies to disseminate and promote Sexual Rights and Sexual and Reproductive Health for women, youth and adolescents. Since 2007 she has been advocating for Sexual and Reproductive Justice at the national, regional and international levels. Since 2010 she has specialised in training abortion doulas and since 2012 in reducing abortion stigma at the individual and community levels. In 2017, she became Balance’s Executive Director. Ms. Lopez is a member of RESURJ, a Global South-led transnational feminist alliance, and a member of Vecinas Feministas, a Latin-American Network of Feminists for Sexual and Reproductive Justice. She is part of the Supervisory Board of Mama Cash and represents Latin America in the Bisexual Committee of ILGA.
In 2011 she received the Omeccihuatl medal from the Women’s Institute of Mexico City, due to her commitment to women’s autonomy as the manager of the MARIA Fund. In the same year, the World Association for Sexual Health recognised her work in the field of Sexual Health and Youth. Ms. Lopez has a degree in Social Communication from the Metropolitan Autonomous University. In 2018 she attended a short-program for Human Rights advocates at Columbia University.