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Susan Collin Marks

Peace Ambassador, Search for Common Ground

Skoll Awardee

Biography

Susan Collin Marks, Search for Common Ground’s Peace Ambassador, is an internationally renowned peacemaker and peacebuilder. For nearly three decades, she has worked in some of the most conflictual places on the planet, including mediating in the heart of her native South Africa’s transition from apartheid, facilitating ongoing dialogue in the Middle East, and establishing peacebuilding programs throughout Africa. In recent years she has focused on coaching high level political, institutional and civil society leaders worldwide, encouraging them find common humanity with their opponents. In September 2014, she stepped aside after 20 years as senior vice president of Search for Common Ground, and moved from Washington DC to Europe. Her book, Watching the Wind: conflict resolution during South Africa’s transition to democracy, USIP 2000, captures the compelling story of how peace can be built even in the most intractable conflict. She holds an MA in International Relations from the University of Kent at Canterbury, and a BA in Social Anthropology from the University of Cape Town. Honors include an Honorary Doctorate from the UN University for Peace in Costa Rica, Jennings Randolph Peace Fellowship at the United States Institute for Peace, Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship, President Jimmy Carter’s Waging Peace Award, Marvin Johnson Diversity Award, Association for Conflict Resolution, Exemplary Leadership Award from the University of Pittsburgh, and the Institute for Noetic Science’s Creative Altruism Award. She speaks, teaches, coaches, mentors, writes, facilitates, and supports peace processes and conflict resolution programs internationally. She holds a vision of a world of peace and dignity for all. She believes that our common humanity binds us together more than our differences divide us. She works to make it so.