About us

Our Mission

We bridge the gaps between environment and health policies through gender-just solutions

Our goal is to bridge the inequality gap that still exists related to women leadership roles, while demonstrating the benefits of gender equality for sound environmental and public health solutions. We are convinced that fair gender relations can lead all of us to a cleaner environment, healthier lives and peace.

Our Story

We empower women to lead Planetary Health solutions at the frontlines of development in the Global South.

Launched at the UN Climate Summit in December 2019, we strive to achieve the following: develop women’s leadership in the evolving field of Planetary Health, improve women’s health, and safeguard a clean environment to leave no one behind.

Here at Women Leaders for Planetary Health, we’re committed to investing our expertise and resources in order to further achieve our cause. We’ve been supporting our community members in a variety of ways and measuring our success not by monetary size, but by more qualitative measurements, such as the scale and effectiveness of our efforts and the quality of our network.

Just imagine what we can achieve together!

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Who we are

Meet Our Team

We bridge the gaps between environment and health policies through gender-just solutions.

Nicole de Paula

Executive Director, Founder
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Kathleen Mar

Senior Associate
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Kathryn Bowen

Senior Associate
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maka

Miriam Maglakelizde

Senior Associate
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Melvine Anyango Otieno

Associate
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Laura Jung

Associate
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Sophie Gepp

Associate
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Sabine

Sabine Baunach

Senior Associate
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Omnia El Omrani

Associate
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Meike Fünderich

Associate
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Connie Cai Ru Gan

Focal point Asia Pacific
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Léa Royer

Associate
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Angela Philp

Head Coach
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Meet Our Partners

Council Advisors

We bridge the gaps between environment and health policies through gender-just solutions.

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Nicole de Paula

Dr. Nicole de Paula is the inaugural Klaus Töpfer Sustainability Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam, Germany. For more than a decade, she has been globally connecting policymakers and researchers to create a public understanding of key issues related to sustainability, the environment, and public health. Previously of her work in Germany, she was the executive director of a think-tank in Bangkok, Thailand, hosted by Mahidol University at the Faculty of Public Health focused on the operationalization of the One Health approach in Southeast Asia and Latin America. She is the founder of the Women Leaders for Planetary Health and co-founder of an interdisciplinary research group on Planetary Health at the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Dr. Nicole de Paula holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from Sciences Po Paris and has been consulting with several international organizations under the UN system on themes related to global health, climate change, biodiversity, chemicals, financial and urban affairs. In the past, she has also been the French Embassy fellow at the Center for Transatlantic Relations at the Johns Hopkins University in Washington D.C. and a researcher at the London School of Economics and Political Science as part of the Global Public Policy Network (GPPN). Since 2012, Dr. Nicole de Paula is also a team leader and writer for the reputable Earth Negotiations Bulletin, published by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD). Her most recent research focuses on decision making and international cooperation in the post-Covid19 world, as well as digitalization and sustainability. In 2020, Dr. Nicole de Paula successfully concluded the executive course “Blockchain: Technologies and Applications for Business” at Berkeley Haas School of Business, University of California. She is currently the review editor for the journal Frontiers in Public Health (Planetary Health) and for the Brazilian Journal of International Politics.

As a pioneer in the field named planetary health, she champions the socio-economic advancement of women through environmental conservation and public health policies to make the UN Sustainable Development Goals a reality by 2030.

In 2020, Dr. Nicole de Paula has been appointed as one of the Scientific Commissioners of the prestigious Pathfinder Initiative, chaired by former Prime Minister Helen Clark and Prof. Andy Haines. This initiative was launched at the UN “Race to Zero” Dialogues and supports progress towards a healthy, zero-carbon society with the support of influential partners, including the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network; C40-Cities; Wellcome Trust Foundation; OECD; and The Lancet. Finally, she is currently a member of the global committee preparing the global meeting of the Planetary Health Alliance, to be held in Brazil in April 2021. Originally from Brazil, she speaks Portuguese, English, French, and Spanish.

Kathleen Mar

Kathleen Mar holds a Ph.D. in atmospheric chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley and worked at the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) prior to joining the International Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS), where she leads the group Climate Action in National and International Processes (ClimAct). Working at the interface of science and policy, her career began with a focus on improving air quality for human and environmental health. Her current work focuses on the synergies and interactions between climate, air quality and planetary health.

Kathryn Bowen

Dr Kathryn Bowen is an Honorary Associate Professor at the Fenner School of Environment & Society, a Senior Fellow at the Research School of Population Health, and an Affiliate Scholar at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, Potsdam, Germany.

She works at the nexus of global environmental change, global health and governance issues, primarily in low and middle-income settings. She holds a PhD (ANU), MSc (International Health) (Humboldt & Frei Universities, Berlin) and BA/Psyc (Hons) (Newcastle). 

Dr Bowen has worked in global health research and policy since 1999, across public, private and university sectors. She is a Research Fellow within the Earth System Governance project, and Alumni of the Centre for Sustainability Leadership.

Dr Bowen regularly advises the World Health Organization (WHO) on climate change and health, as well as other national and international organisations, including the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the German Organisation for International Development (GIZ), UNDP, Global Environment Facility, and the Asian Development Bank. In Melbourne, she has been working with research and practitioner teams to support the development of tools and mechanisms to strengthen the implementation of locally-based green space projects. 

Dr Bowen is a Lead Author in three recent international reports – the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th Assessment Report, the UNEP’s Global Environment (GEO-6), and Adaptation Gaps Reports.

Dr Bowen leads and supports practical and applied health and sustainability research that is closely linked with policy change and program development.

Along with five friends, she was a founding board member of ‘Just Change’, a climate change and equity organisation, and she sits on an Environment Advisory Committee for the City of Melbourne. Dr Bowen is an editor of the journal Globalization and Health, and is a reviewer for many journals, including Social Science and Medicine, Global Health Action, Environmental Research Letters, among others.

Dr Bowen is committed to being part of a solutions-focused sustainability community working to harness skills and passion to support global development that is sustainable, healthy and equitable.

Miriam Maglakelizde

Dr Mariam Maglakelidze is a public health specialist with an experience in the field since 2003.  Her primary interests in public health are non-communicable diseases and the impact of environmental factors on them.

Most recently she was  a Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Sustainabiltiy Studies (IASS) in Potsdam,  and  a Guest Scientist at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, doing a research on the association on Asthma and COPD exacerbation in relation to outdoor air pollution in Berlin, Germany.  Mariam has a Ph.D. in Pulmonology from Tbilisi State Medical University and Masters degree in International Health from Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. Dr. Maglakelidze is an experienced researcher with study records in  quantitative and qualitative research fields; her research track covers studies on respiratory health- (anticholinergic drugs for exacerbations of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), COPD prevalence and management studies, Pulmonary Rehabilitation,  tobacco use and Chronic Respiratory Diseases (CRDs). 

Mariam has worked in various projects of international organisations (UNFPA, European Cervical Cancer Association, UNICEF, ICRC) governmental health institutions (National Center for Disease Control and Public Health of Georgia, City Service of Health and Social Affairs of Tbilisi) and NGOs.  Dr. Maglakelidze has considerable experience of building dialogues between stakeholders within Georgia and with international partners. Throughout her careeer she  conducted number of advocacy  events and raised funds for charity   in healthcare. 

Dr. Mariam Maglakelidze represents Georgia within WHO initiative Global Alliance against Respiratory Diseases (GARD).  She is a guest lecturer on Air Pollution and Health, at University of Potsdam, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Geoecology Department.


Melvine Anyango Otieno

Ms Melvine Anyango Otieno is a 2019  Planetary Health Campus Ambassador turned to PHA Next Generation Fellow, working to inspire, activate and convene the next generation of Planetary Health Campus Ambassador from around the world, conducting outreach and facilitating international collaborations through her leadership in growing the Planetary Health Eastern Africa Regional Hub. She attained BSc in Environmental Biology and Health and currently pursuing MSc in Environmental health at the University of Eldoret. 

She is a Research Assistant for BGS-UoE-MU research on Dynamics of Environmental Geochemistry and Health in the Lake Victoria Basin where she is investigates  the transfer of micronutrients and potentially toxic elements transfer into Winam Gulf, LVB catchment, which is attributable to a change in land-use and subsequent implications for planetary health. 

She is also a member of Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health (SEGH), Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) and Africa Network for Internationalization of Higher Education (ANIE). She aspires to further planetary health leadership along with a new extended global community network that will lead to growth opportunities and synergies for PHA to help find solutions to planetary health and one health challenges.

Laura Jung

Laura Jung is a MSc Public Health and medical student from Germany with a strong interest in global health. She has been involved in activities around climate and health, as well as gender equity for the last few years and is a strong advocate for planetary health. 

During her medical studies, she intercalated a Master in Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She is a board member of the German Climate Change & Health Alliance (KLUG) and coordinator for Health for Future. Internationally she cooperates with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA) and is a policy associate for climate, gender & health for Women in Global Health. 

Laura is committed to work for gender-just climate and health solutions and improve health worldwide.

Sophie Gepp

Sophie Gepp has an MSc Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and is currently finishing medical school at Charité in Berlin. She has a strong interest in global and is an advocate for planetary health. She has been active in the area of climate and health with the German Climate Change & Health Alliance (KLUG) on the local and national level and with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA) on an international level. She has also experience on the intersection of climate change and gender through working in a project in South India. 

Sophie is active in gender policy at an international level as she is the current youth observer for the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. She is actively working beyond silos, trying to include the perspective of gender in planetary health and the other way round. Sophie is convinced that we can only create a gender-just, sustainable future if we decision making is inclusive.

Sabine Baunach

Dr. Sabine Baunach is an International Health Expert for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and Planetary Health experienced in technical assistance, strategy and policy development, training and designing and implementing health programs in international aid.

With over ten years of experience in the humanitarian and development sector, Sabine has lived and worked in various countries from field to headquarters positions supporting crisis-affected women and girls in their health needs and rights with a focus on family planning and abortion care.

Since recent years, Sabine has followed her passion and prioritized Planetary Health in her work and strives to bring the evidence base to implementation.   

Sabine holds a medical degree from the University in Frankfurt, Germany, with a PhD and a Master Degree in International Health and advanced training in Planetary Health.

Omnia El Omrani

Omnia El Omrani is a final-year MBBCh medical student from Egypt, currently working at Ain Shams University Hospital in Cairo. She has more than 6 years of experience in global health and student advocacy. 

She is currently serving as the Liaison Officer for Public Health Issues for the International Federation of Medical Students’ Association, representing the voice of 1.3 million medical students from 129 countries across the world in the advocacy for planetary health, climate change, and non-communicable diseases. She is also the organization’s focal point to the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC).

She has worked on other diverse projects with the World Health Organization, United Nations Environment Progam, and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). She has facilitated over 74 hours of capacity building workshops and training sessions in 12 countries and has past experiences from a range of positions at IFMSA including Public Health Regional Assistant for the Eastern-Mediterranean Region and National Public Health Officer in Egypt.

Meike Fünderich

Meike Fünderich is a Student at the University of Limerick, Ireland, working on her Master’s degree in Mathematical Modeling. While studying Mathematics in Medicine and Life Sciences in Lübeck, Germany, she became more intensively involved with sustainability studies. In a four lateral collaborative effort with selected volunteers from an exchange organization (AFS) through which she spent a High School year in Phoenix, USA, she was part of the building and executing four 9-day-workshops that received two fundings by Erasmus+ (European Commission). Two of those workshops were motivated through a perspective of climate justice, covering topics from responsible and democratized energy consumption to environmental migration. While studying in Potsdam, Meike worked at the Institute for Sustainability Studies (IASS) as a student assistant in the Fellowship Program and learned more about Planetary Health. Before moving to Ireland, she joined Women Leaders for Planetary Health.  After graduation, Meike plans to work in sustainability research and remain involved with Women Leaders for Planetary Health.

Connie Cai Ru Gan

Cai Ru (Connie) is a doctoral candidate at Griffith’s Centre for Environment and Population Health. She is equally interested in public health research and translating those findings into public health policy. Her thesis focuses on future-proofing hospitals against climate-related disasters by leveraging innovative ways to streamline and accelerate adaptation activities in healthcare settings. Alongside research and work, Connie enjoys boxing, movies and flexes her linguistics muscles by learning her 6th/7th language.

Léa Royer

Léa Royer is a french law student finishing her Master’s degree in International and Humanitarian Health Law at Montpellier Law University, France. She’s been interested in issues concerning fundamentals rights, ethics, and public health. Léa wants to continue her formation to defend the concept of planetary health since she hardly believes in the inseparable bond that unites human health and environmental health.

She’s now an intern at Women Leaders for planetary Health, putting into practice her knowledge, and learning all the possibilities of the planetary health approach.

Angela Philp

Women’s executive leadership coach & motivational speaker, Angela started her career in women’s empowerment consulting at UNESCO headquarters in Paris. Over six years, she contributed to the conception and design of many successful women’s education and empowerment programs and awareness campaigns worldwide on themes such as women’s health, women’s economic empowerment, and the value of educating women and girls.

Since 2010 Angela has run private residential retreats and coached hundreds of women leaders to exceed their performance expectations and create the impossible for themselves while maintaining peak health. Her clients include women senior executives managing directors, and managers in the finance, engineering, and health sectors, entrepreneurs, and creatives from all over the globe.

In 2015 Angela launched the B.A.M (Body and Mind), coaching concept with Marion Clignet, Olympic medallist and world champion cyclist, for senior women leaders and managers at Airbus (and a short program at Thales). B.A.M. is a unique blend of mindfulness, physical development, and leadership mindset coaching, which helps leaders increase their energy and improve endurance, strength, self-mastery, and positive focus and refine the self-awareness needed for extraordinary and effective leadership. This 3-month program ran for 5 years and had a 100 % success rate in improvement in mental health and wellness and a 75% success rate at fast-tracking the participants to higher levels of leadership.

Angela has been sponsored by leading brands such as Nike, Dole, and Tropicana to participate in the national and international adventure racing circuit – competing in 24hr non-stop multi-discipline team events ranging from 90-550 km in length.
Sports include: orienteering, trail running and trekking, mountain biking, rafting, open sea, and river kayaking, horse riding, abseiling, rock climbing, glacier ascension, coasteering, bungee jumping and even camel riding!).

She still trains for mountain ultra-marathons (20 -100 kms) to keep her mindset sharp, and her mind and body focussed equally on progress and accomplishment. Her current training objective is a 160km run in the French Pyrenees with 10,000m vertical climb.

She home-schooled her 3, now teen and adult, children full time for 3 years (year levels Grade 1 primary to Grade 9 high school) in both French and English to give them the benefits of a completely bilingual education and an alternative perspective on learning whilst retraining as a coach.

Angela has unwaveringly kept up a daily mediation and mindfulness practice for the last 27 years. 



Over the last 10 years Angela has received ongoing training in positive psychology, U theory, family and systemic constellations, conscious communication and leadership coaching focussed particularly on women.


Angela is passionate about creating a thriving world through women’s leadership and economic empowerment – and her work is dedicated for women to hold 50% of leadership positions worldwide in the next ten years. She is increasingly passionate about the field of planetary health and is ready to support women to take bold action to protect our planet and secure a healthy future.


Two favorite sayings:
“We are confined only by the walls we build ourselves”
“The best way to predict the future, is to create it.”