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Melissa Fleming

Under-Secretary General for Global Communications

United Nations

Melissa Fleming was appointed in 2019 in the position of UN Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications. From 2009 to 2019, Fleming served UNHCR as Head of Global Communications and Spokesperson for the High Commissioner. At UNHCR, she led global media outreach campaigns, social media engagement, and a multimedia news service to distribute and place stories designed to generate empathy and stir action for refugees. Fleming joined UNHCR from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), where she served for eight years as Spokesperson and Head of the Media and Outreach. Prior to IAEA, she headed the Press and Public Information team at the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). Earlier still, she was Public Affairs Specialist at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Munich. From 2016 to 2017, she also served as Senior Adviser and Spokesperson on the incoming United Nations Secretary General’s Transition Team.

Fleming is a frequent interview guest on international media platforms, and her talks are featured on TED.com. She is author of A Hope More Powerful than the Sea, and host of the award-winning podcast, Awake at Night.

Fleming holds a MS in journalism from the College of Communication, Boston University, and a BA in German studies from Oberlin College.

Baidoa, Somalia

Makeshift, temporary shelter made of plastic and clothing at a refugee center in Baidoa, Somalia.