Skip to content

Humanity in Action Founder and Executive Director Dr. Judith Goldstein to Retire After 26 Years of Leadership



(New York, NY) — After 26 years of stewardship, Humanity in Action Founder and Executive Director Dr. Judith Goldstein has announced her retirement from the organization, effective March 31. Humanity in Action’s Board of Directors has unanimously approved Talia Dubovi, a Humanity in Action Senior Fellow (Amsterdam 2000) and Board Member, to lead the organization as Interim CEO, beginning April 1

Dr. Goldstein founded Humanity in Action in 1997, with programs including Fellows from Denmark, the Netherlands, and the United States. In the 26 years since she began the organization, Humanity in Action has blossomed to a network of over 2,850 Fellows, six national offices, numerous international conferences, and multiple Fellowship programs laying the foundation for the next generation of activists and changemakers to understand and respond to the challenges facing liberal democracy and human rights. In recent years, Dr. Goldstein led Humanity in Action to expand the scope of its work through the medium of film and media production through its partnership with the Bertelsmann Foundation, resulting in a catalog of documentary work, topical podcasts, and more. In partnership with the Alfred Landecker Foundation, Humanity in Action also launched the Landecker Democracy Fellowship in 2020, with the third and current cohort of 30 young professionals engaged with tackling the challenges facing democracy in the digital age.

Talia Dubovi will take on the role of Interim CEO following an esteemed career in the government and nonprofit sectors. She held several leadership positions at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a leading think tank in Washington, D.C., most recently as Vice President and Director of the Diversity and Leadership in International Affairs Project. Ms. Dubovi spent six years working in Congress, where she covered a wide range of foreign policy and national security issues. She holds a JD from the University of Michigan Law School.

During this transitional period, the Humanity in Action Board will conduct a thorough, inclusive search for an Executive Director to shepherd Humanity in Action into the future. 

“For the past 26 years, I have had the amazing opportunity to initiate programs and work with outstanding staff, the Humanity in Action, Inc. board members and those serving on national boards,” said Dr. Goldstein. “Together we have built an organization that has expanded in scope, scale and ambitions. The time is right for a transition to a new phase of leadership and organizational development. How fortunate we are that Talia Dubovi is able to assume the responsibilities of guiding increasingly strong Fellowship programs and an engaged Senior Fellows network. She is a manager par excellence.”

“I have admired Judy’s commitment and passion since I joined Humanity in Action as a Fellow. Her vision, leadership, and drive have led to impactful programs across six national offices and a thriving network of Senior Fellows,” said Ms. Dubovi. “I am honored to join Humanity in Action as Interim CEO at a time when our work to promote democracy, justice, and human rights is more important than ever.  I am looking forward to helping chart the organization’s next phase and working to ensure that Humanity in Action remains a unique and crucial organization in the fight for democracy and human rights.”

“We are all presented with opportunities to make the world a better place.  What we do with those opportunities is our own choice.  Judy Goldstein did not wait for opportunities to arise. She had a vision, rolled up her sleeves, and not only created the opportunity for herself, but presented it to thousands of others as well in the form of Humanity in Action. She did it with grace, with generosity, and with an extraordinary amount of talent and intelligence,” said Bill Spencer, Chair of Humanity in Action Board of Directors. “I celebrate her remarkable accomplishment and will forever be grateful for the gift of opportunity that Judy gave to me.”  

“Against the ugly backdrop of history and the Holocaust, more than a quarter century ago, Judy Goldstein projected a vision of new possibilities amidst old divisions, built a global network of younger leaders laying cornerstones of democracy, through an organization we yet call Humanity in Action.” said Board Member Cornell Brooks. “More than 2,850 Fellows across many communities and countries are heeding the lessons of history to rewrite a future without the “isms” of hate. These leaders are creating, restoring, and reimagining democracies and democratic institutions. Judy’s brilliance, tenacity, diplomacy, integrity, grace, and love made all this possible – and perhaps even inevitable.”