View Full Version : Helvi Sipilš

June Pelo
12-03-06, 21:31
"I started out as a female lawyer, but soon turned into a promoter of women's rights. This was primarily due to my practical experience of the weaker position of women in society rather than any sentimental conviction," says Ms. Sipilš.

Helvi Sipilš, 85, who still follows world events as actively as ever, is well known for being a staunch promoter of world population development and welfare. However, she is best rememberd for her position as Assistant Secretary-General to the United Nations in the 1970s, the first woman ever to hold this post.

Sipilš, who is now living in Esbo, retired from her post in 1980. She was the Secretary-General of the first United Nations World Conference for the Advancement of Women, held in Mexico, during the International Women's Year in 1975. She also had a great influence on the UN's decision to celebrate the decade of women 1976-85 and to found the first women's fund.

Throughout her lifetime the politically independent Sipilš has influenced the promotion of peace and the advancement of women. She headed the Finnish Girls Scout Organization 1950-69. She has also long been active as a member of the international committee of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, the International Federation of Female Lawyers, Zonta International, and the International Council of Women. Helvi Sipilš holds honorary doctorates from 12 foreign and Finnish universities.

Norden newspaper, 2 March 2006


13-03-06, 09:42
She also had a reputation of beeing the husbands' nightmare when she handled divorce cases as a lawyer.