ENNHRI’s governance reflects the importance of accountability and proper representation of its members’ interests. The main components of ENNHRI’s governance structure are detailed below.

General Assembly

The General Assembly (GA) is the highest decision making body, in which all ENNHRI members participate. It shapes the guiding principles of the policies and activities of ENNHRI, and adopts the strategic plan, the annual budget and operational plan.

The GA usually meets bi-annually: in March, on the occasion of the Global Alliance of NHRIs’ Annual Meeting in Geneva, and during autumn, for members to decide upon ENNHRI’s strategic direction and activities. Decisions are taken by consensus where possible and, only when required, by vote of ‘A’ status NHRI members.

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ENNHRI’s GA Utrecht 2015

European Coordinating Committee (ECC)

The ECC is ENNHRI’s board, made up of six elected ‘A’ status NHRIs. It drives ENNHRI’s strategic priorities, led by its Chair, and is responsible for the management and administration of ENNHRI.

ECC Chair

The Chair is elected by the General Assembly for a three year term. He/she oversees the direction and management of ENNHRI and is its primary representative. Each ECC member has a three-year mandate.

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Lora Vidović
Lora Vidović, Ombudswoman of Croatia is ENNHRI’s Chair for the period 2016-2019

ECC Members 2016-2019

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ECC Members 2016-2019 at a meeting in Brussels, September 2016
  • Croatia - Office of the Ombudswoman of Croatia
  • Finland - The Finish NHRI is composed of the Human Rights Centre and the Parliamentary Ombudsman
  • Georgia - Office of Public Defender (Ombudsman) of Georgia
  • Germany - German Institute for Human Rights
  • Greece - Greek National Commission for Human Rights
  • Netherlands - Netherlands Institute for Human Rights

Finance Committee

ENNHRI’s Finance Committee, led by its Chair, oversees ENNHRI’s financial situation and fundraising and makes proposals to the ECC and General Assembly to strengthen ENNHRI’s financial outlook. The FC also advises the Secretariat on financial administration and makes recommendations on membership fee waiver applications.



  • Belgium - UNIA
  • Great Britain - Equality and Human Rights Commission
  • Georgia - Office of Public Defender (Ombudsman) of Georgia

Permanent Secretariat

ENNHRI’s Secretariat was established in 2013 in Brussels. It supports and facilitates ENNHRI’s work and provides a central contact point for stakeholders. The secretariat undertakes the day-to-day management of the network, by implementing the Strategic Plan and annual operational plans and the decisions of the Chair, ECC and General Assembly.
Ms. Debbie Kohner is ENNHRI’s Secretary General.

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Debbie Kohner, ENNHRI Secretary General

Working Groups

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ENNHRI Working Group members at the General Assembly in Utrecht, 2015

ENNHRI has several Working Groups with expertise in different thematic areas of relevance for the European region, such as: European legal structures, rights of persons with disabilities, and asylum and migration. The Working Groups take a lead in ENNHRI’s substantive engagement on these topics. They also provide a platform for mutual learning and solidarity among members, and facilitate regional responses from NHRIs in specific thematic areas.