Jacqueline Pitanguy is the founder and executive director of CEPIA, a non-profit dedicated to promoting human and civil rights in Brazil, especially among groups historically excluded from exercising their full citizenship.

She is also a sociologist and political scientist, and was a professor at the Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro and Rutgers University. From 1986 to 1989, she held a cabinet position as president of the National Council for Women’s Rights (CNDM), designing and implementing public policies to improve women’s conditions in Brazil.

In 1990 she founded CEPIA, Citizenship, Studies, Information and Action, a non-governmental organization based in Rio de Janeiro, and has been its executive director since then. She is also the president of the board of the Brazil Fund for Human Rights.