Bio

Julia Drost serves as the Chief of Staff at the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW), sitting on the executive & global senior management teams, working closely with the President and serving as Secretary to the Board of Directors. She oversees and coordinates institutional processes and external relations, supports the organization’s strategic directions, and direct special initiatives to further ICRW’s mission and vision. 

Prior, she was Advisor to the Women's Human Rights Program at Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) in Washington, DC.  She also worked as the Policy & Advocacy Associate for Amnesty International USA's Women's Human Rights Program. As the principal advocate for AIUSA's women’s rights priorities within Congress, the administration, and amongst coalition partners, Julia utilized advocacy, issued expertise, public education and membership mobilization to make strides towards ending gender-based violence in the US and globally, securing women's rights to political participation, promoting sexual and reproductive rights, supporting women’s and LGBT human rights defenders, and ensuring US action in support of Afghan women’s rights and security.

Julia specializes in prevention and response to gender-based violence, women's empowerment, gender equality and the women, peace and security agenda, particularly with regard to Afghanistan. Her track record of successful policy and advocacy efforts in Congress includes, but is not limited to, attaining the highest number of bipartisan supporters for the International Violence Against Women Act, supporting successful appropriations strategies, and inclusion of several amendments to the annual National Defense Authorization Act, many of which were passed into law. She has an in-depth knowledge of and connections in Congress, the administration, international organizations, NGOs and civil society.

Julia manages AIUSA's co-leadership of a 200+ member coalition to end gender-based violence globally and with coalition partners, focuses significant efforts on advocating for the International Violence Against Women Act (I-VAWA) on Capitol Hill. Julia supported AIUSA's efforts to secure inclusion of Section 1223 on Afghan women's rights and security in the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Public Law 112-239, and is presiding over similar efforts this year.

Prior to joining AIUSA in May 2012, Julia served as Legislative Assistant and Scheduling Director to U.S. Congressman Peter Welch (D-VT) in Washington for nearly four years. Her issue areas included: women’s issues (primarily reproductive rights, health care, and violence against women), public lands, arts & humanities, science, and related appropriations.  Julia began her work on Capitol Hill interning for Congressman John Sarbanes (D-MD) following her 2008 graduation from the University of Vermont where she earned B.A.'s in political science and English with a focus on gender studies.

Julia is currently finalizing a MSc program in Gender, Policy & Inequalities from the London School of Economics' Gender Institute while continuing part-time advisory role for Amnesty International USA's women's human rights program.

Follow Julia on Twitter @julia_drost

Articles, Publications, Appearances