Justice Zak Yacoob served as a Constitutional Court judge from February 1998 until his retirement in January 2013. Justice Yacoob has been a life-long human rights lawyer, rising to prominence during the apartheid years. He represented, among others, the Durban Six, the United Democratic Front in the Delmas treason trial, and the African National Congress in the Operation Vula trial. Justice Yacoob, who is himself blind, has also been closely involved in the KwaZulu-Natal Blind and Deaf Society, has sat on numerous school committees and has served as chairperson of the South Africa National Council of the Blind.
Marius Pieterse is a Professor at the University of the Witwatersrand Law School and serves as an ex-officio member of the SECTION27 board. He has previously worked as a researcher for Judge LWH Ackermann at the Constitutional Court. Pieterse, who has a Y1 rating from the National Research Foundation, has published extensively in areas that include health law, constitutional law, human rights law and urban development. He is currently a contributing editor to Urban Joburg, a blog interrogating various aspects of Johannesburg life from a rights-based perspective and has engaged in various initiatives to reclaim the city. Pieterse is also the joint coordinator of the International Research Group on Law and Urban Space.
Alice Brown is an international human rights advocate and an expert on the use of the law for the public good. She worked for the Ford Foundation for nearly two decades – many of these years were spent in leadership positions – engaging in innovative grant making to support visionaries working in crucial areas such as human rights, social justice, constitutions and reconciliation. Brown has supervised funding programmes with cumulative grant making of over $US100 million.
Dr Brian Brink is the chief medical officer at Anglo American. He serves on the board of directors of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which has been at the forefont of galvanising support to treat and prevent these diseases. He is also closely involved with a number of non-governmental organisations that are fighting the AIDS epidemic. Described as ‘a rarity in the business world’, he has for many years been leading mining giant Anglo American’s efforts to ensure proper access to good health care for workers and their families.
Professor Quarraisha Abdool-Karim is the associate scientific director atthe Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) at the UKZN. Professor Abdool-Karim has been a key scientist in a number of critical, international HIV-prevention trials. She serves as the adjunct professor of Public Health at the Nelson R Mandela School of Medicine at UKZN and as an associate professor of Epidemiology at Columbia University in the United States. Professor Abdool-Karim has been awarded the 2012 N’Galy-Mann award for international AIDS research. In 2013 she was awarded the Order of Mapungubwe – South Africa’s highest honour – for her outstanding work in the field of HIV/AIDS and TB research and health policy development.
Nhlanhla Ndlovu is the treasurer on the board and an expert in the field of financing for HIV/AIDS in eastern and southern Africa. He currently serves as the acting director of the Centre for Economic Governance and AIDS in Africa (CEGAA). Prior to this he served as the programme manager responsible for CEGAA’s Parliamentary and Civil Society Programmes. He has also worked as an academic, lecturing on Business Administration and Industrial Psychology at the University of Kwazulu-Natal (UKZN).
Justice Johann Kriegler is a life-long human-rights lawyer and serves as the deputy chairperson of the SECTION27 board. In 1994, as an Appeal Court judge, he headed South Africa’s transitional elections and was subsequently appointed a founding justice of the newly established Constitutional Court. Since completing his term in 2002 he has been engaged in some 40 countries on five continents on behalf of the UN, the AU, the Commonwealth and various international NGOs in electoral work, training judges and advocates, and conducting inquiries and arbitrations.
Vuyiseka Dubula is the chairperson of the SECTION27 board of directors. Dubula serves on the Treatment Action Campaign’s board of directors and is a former general secretary of the movement. She currently heads up Sonke Gender Justice’s Policy Development and Advocacy Programme. Dubula has received a number of accolades, including the 2004 Letten Foundation Courageous Leadership Award and the 2010 Lloyd Foundation Leadership Award in recognition of her work for people living with HIV/AIDS. Dubula is a convenor of the TAC’s Runners/Walkers for Health group and is about to complete her second Comrades Ultra-marathon. She recently gave a TEDx talk in London titled ‘Our struggle is not over’ sharing her own personal journey with HIV.