Anne Gallagher

Independent scholar and legal adviser

Anne Gallagher AO (BA, LLB, M.Int.L, PhD) is a lawyer, practitioner, teacher and scholar with an established reputation in international affairs, most particularly human rights and the administration of criminal justice. She is a former United Nations Official (1992-2003) and was Adviser on Trafficking to Mary Robinson, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and former President of Ireland, from 1998 to 2002. During this time she represented the High Commissioner at negotiations for the UN Convention on Transnational Crime and its protocol on human trafficking and led the development of the highly influential UN Principles and Guidelines on Human Rights and Human Trafficking. She left the UN in 2003 to lead a high profile intergovernmental project that aims to strengthen legislative and criminal justice responses to human trafficking and related exploitation in South East Asia. This initiative, which is the world’s largest and most ambitious criminal justice initiative against trafficking, has been widely acclaimed for its impact on laws, policies and practices within and outside the ASEAN region.

Dr Gallagher has combined her career as a UN official and high-level development professional with a vocation as a teacher and independent, self-funded scholar. She is considered an international expert on human rights and criminal justice and is, according to the US Government, “the leading global authority on the international law on human trafficking”. She continues to advise the UN and is the author of many documents, handbooks, research reports and training materials on human rights, criminal justice and the rule of law. She is presently leading in a multi-year research project, mandated by the UN Crime Commission, focusing on problematic elements the international legal definition of human trafficking. 

In November 2011 Dr Gallagher was awarded the inaugural Australian Freedom Award for her international work against contemporary forms of slavery. In June 2012 she was appointed Officer of the Order of Australia (AO), that country's second-highest civic honor, for her: "distinguished service to the law and human rights, as a practitioner, teacher and scholar, particularly in areas of human trafficking responses and criminal justice". That same year she was named a “2012 TIP Report Hero” by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for her ambitious work in the global fight against modern slavery.