Michel Gabaudan served as president of Refugees International (RI) from September of 2010 to June 2017, leading the organization in its mission to bring life-saving attention and action to refugees and displaced people worldwide. Prior to his role with RI, Michel served as the United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR) Regional Representative for the United States and the Caribbean. Michel’s career with UNHCR spanned more than 25 years, including international service in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Pacific.
Trained as a medical doctor in addition to holding a master’s degree in tropical public health, Gabaudan spent a decade working in Guyana, Zambia, Brazil, London and Yemen before joining UNHCR as a Field Officer in Thailand in 1978. His UN career took him to field operations in Cameroon and Pakistan as well as several years at the agency’s headquarters in Geneva, where he served as the first public health adviser to the organization.
Gabaudan went on to become head of UNHCR’s funding and donor relations service at its headquarters in Geneva. He went on to also serve as UNHCR Regional Representative in Australia and later in China.