White Ribbon Alliance

The White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood hosts the Wake up Call Women's Breakfast for Maternal Health at the Stephan Weiss Studio in New York City on September 21, 2012.

Common Purpose and Collective Ownership

March 18, 2014
If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

- African Proverb

Common Purpose and Collective Ownership

From its inception in 1999, the strength of the White Ribbon Alliance (WRA) has been our common purpose and collective ownership. Effective April 1, 2014, the office of President will come to a close and Betsy McCallon will lead the WRA as Executive Director. As many of you know, a succession plan has been a key component to my participation as a WRA founder. I am confident that this transition will uphold the mission and values of WRA, and I will remain an active member.

Betsy possesses the ideal combination of experience and acumen to advance our successful journey. We have served together since 2004 and in that time I have witnessed her expertise in the field and valued her skills when working with members, colleagues, donors, and government officials.

This is a significant moment for WRA as we enter into a partnership with the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF). The partnership will strengthen our infrastructure and organizational capacity; enhance our strategic communications; and support our long-term plan to increase WRA’s and IPPF’s global influence.

In my life long work as an advocate for maternal health, I have often reflected on this inspiring quote attributed to Nelson Mandela: “Action without vision is only passing time, vision without action is merely day dreaming, but vision with action can change the world.” Currently, we have thirteen National Alliances and a vibrant global membership all of whom continue the campaign to create and sustain a world where it is the right of all women to be safe and healthy before, during, and after childbirth.

I want to personally thank all of you for sharing the WRA vision. Without your actions, a dream would not have evolved into the powerful Alliance we are today.


Theresa Shaver