DVUSA Alumna Joins the Dominican Leadership Conference at the UN

From left to right:  Kati Garrison, Michele Bachelet (UN High Commissioner for Human Rights), and Cecilie Kern (previous representative of the Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd) at the International Conference to Adopt the GCM in Marrakech, Morocco

Former Dominican Volunteer, Kati Garrison, is returning to the Dominican Leadership Conference at the United Nations to serve as migration and climate policy analyst, under the leadership of Sr. Dusty Farnan, OP. Kati began her engagement in the UN international policy sphere in 2012, under the direction of previous DLC representative Margaret Mayce, OP. She will continue to advance her commitment to justice and advocacy work.

Kati grew up in a small town in Michigan, about an hour from the Adrian Dominican Sisters. She earned her Bachelor in Psychology from the University of Notre Dame, with a minor in International Peace Studies, incorporating a semester abroad in Australia. Her curiosity and enthusiasm for learning led her to pursue graduate studies at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, where she attained a Master of Philosophy in International Peace Studies, with a specialization in Humanitarian Aid and Development.

Following a volunteer term with DVUSA at the DLC United Nations Office, Kati’s passion for advocacy eventually called her back to New York, where she accepted a position as advocacy associate with a non-profit at the UN. In this role, Kati’s endeavors included providing research and policy analysis to inform advocacy at the UN and to amplify and integrate the voices of partners, across approximately 60 countries, into international policy discussions. She conducted grassroots visits with programs in the Middle East, Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean, to amalgamate local-level learnings into cohesive campaigns to influence policy. This justice work encompassed topics ranging from food security, to peace-building, climate change, and migration – cultivating a strong interest and emphasis on the latter. 

For a number of years, Kati devoted her time to exploring and engaging with issues pertaining to human mobility and people on the move (i.e., migrants, refugees, and internally displaced people). This emphasis culminated in the design and implementation of advocacy initiatives to integrate the voices of grassroots actors in the negotiation and adoption of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), the first global agreement on a shared approach to governance of international migration, in all of its dimensions.

Kati continues to dedicate her time and resources to raising awareness and mobilizing constituencies around the themes of migration and climate-induced displacement. She brings to the DLC an enthusiasm for forging collaborative relationships and bringing the perspectives of local advocates to the UN. Together, we can change hearts and minds, advancing initiatives to uphold the human rights and dignity of all. 

We welcome Kati back into our community. We encourage those who are interested in participating on the topics of migration and climate justice at the UN to reach out to Kati via email.