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As part of the 2017 International Women's Day, a call for nominations was launched in February 2017 to recognize Geneva-based individuals’ commitment and contribution to the advancement and support of gender equality and women's empowerment in the field of environment. An exhibition celebrating their achievements was launched on 8 March 2017, at the International Environment House.

Former Head of UN Environment Chemicals Branch and the Scientific Assessment Branch, Fatoumata Keita-Ouane has extensive experience in environment and health issues. Throughout her career she has been committed to supporting women through her leadership and mentoring. Fatoumata has contributed to the development of UN Environment’s capacity building programme on chemicals management. She joined the Secretariat of Stockholm Convention leading the functioning of the Expert Committee tasked with the review of Persistent Organic Pollutants proposed for listing in the Convention and its effectiveness evaluation. She has provided technical and policy support to the UN Environment Global Environment Outlook process and global fora, including the Global Environment Facility and UN Commission on Sustainable Development. Fatoumata retired from UN Environment in 2015 but continues to provide expert advice on environment, chemicals and health, as well as supporting girls’ education in Mali.

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