Patricia Tappatá Valdez

Patricia Tappatá Valdez has worked since 1974 for the defence of human rights in Peru, El Salvador and Argentina. She is currently the head of the Directorate in charge of the relationship with civil society organizations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Argentina. She is also a member of the faculty of the LLM in International Human Rights at the Faculty of Law at the University of Buenos Aires.  Until June 2012 she was Director of Memoria Abierta (Open Memory), an organization she created and led in its development for over ten years. Memoria Abierta is an alliance of five Argentine Human Rights Organizations working together to preserve, organize, and exhibit the documented history of state terrorism in Argentina with the goal of encouraging public policy oriented to recuperate and examine the memory of the recent past as part of the cultural, social, and political identity of the nation.

Patricia Tappatá was the Director of the Truth Commission for El Salvador, created as part of the peace agreements signed in that country between the Government and the Frente Farabundo Martí para la Liberación Nacional (FMLN) and implemented by the United Nations, which investigated the twelve-year war in that country. She also directed the Human Rights Department of the National Conference of Bishops in Peru, 1977-1987, and co- founding the Coordinadora Nacional de Derechos Humanos in Perú, integrating its first Executive Committee (1985-1987).

She directed the Political Representation Program at the Fundación Poder Ciudadano in Argentina, 1993-1997. For three years, she also coordinated a regional program on Social Responsability and Leadership (LIP Program: Leadership in Philanthropy in the Americas) developed by the Kellogg Foundation in seven Latin American countries. She is one of the founding members of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience and currently serves on its board. She is also on the Advisory Board at “Archives and Dealing with the Past” project (Swis Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, the Swiss Federal Archives and Swisspeace).

Tappatá Valdez is the author of several articles and book contributions about human rights, and is an expert in Human Rights issues, Memory and Democracy. She holds a degree in Social Work at the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba and completed his postgraduate studies in Social Sciences at FLACSO-Buenos Aires (Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales).

Patrick Coyle