Lisa Rogoff

Lisa Rogoff (Survivor Corps in Rwanda): Lisa has spent much of her professional career promoting human rights. She earned a BA from Colgate University. She then worked for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Committee on Conscience where she produced Voices on Genocide Prevention, a weekly podcast. Lisa then worked at the ENOUGH Project, directing campaigns to raise awareness about the crises in Sudan, Congo and Uganda. Lisa returned to academia to pursue a joint-degree at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and McDonough School of Business. While at Georgetown she worked at the Clinton Global Initiative, designing the Human Rights and Peace Track for the CGI’s second annual conference for university students. During her first year at graduate school, Lisa also worked with the Grassroots and Issues Management Team at APCO Worldwide, a global communications consulting firm. After her fellowship, Lisa wrote: "My experience in Rwanda has taught me the importance of flexibility. I’ve also seen the importance of empowering women...I don’t know that I’ve changed the way I look at myself, though I have come to understand just how fortunate I am to have been born in my circumstances. I have met so many wonderful and talented men and women in Rwanda who have been unable to realize their fullest potential because of their economic, social, or political situations.”


14 Jun

A placard from the Kigali Memorial captures much of what I’ve been wondering about since my arrival in Kigali.

“The killers should be put away where I’ll never have to see them again.  Life imprisonment would do.  Just as long as I never have to come across them somewhere, looking after their children, after they took away our parents who brought us up so lovingly.”    -Chantal, 11

Today, Rwandans talk about reconciliation and unity.  After genocidaires go through the gacaca process, apologize for their crimes, and serve their communities as directed by the gacaca court, they are considered ex-combatants and are supposedly accepted back into society.  I’ve asked many Rwandans if they can genuinely forgive someone for killing their families and then live as neighbors once again.  The answers have run the gamut: “Yes, I will forgive;” “No, I can never accept this person back into society;” and “We have no choice, so I will.”  I wonder what Chantal would say today?

More photos of the Memorial here.

Posted By Lisa Rogoff

Posted Jun 14th, 2009

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