Thor Halvorssen is a Venezuelan human rights advocate and a film producer. Born in 1976, Thor Halvorssen has offered great contributions in the fields of individual rights and civil liberties, public interest advocacy and public policy among other areas. He is the founder of Oslo Freedom Forum, an organization which holds conferences for global humanitarians to converge and discuss ways of pushing for human rights every year. Mr. Halvorssen is currently the President and CEO of Human Rights Foundation, an organization founded in 2005 to protect and fight for human rights.
Thor Halvorssen began his career in human rights advocacy in 1989 in London where he organized opposition to the South African apartheid regime. While still at the University of Pennsylvania for his undergraduate degree, Mr. Halvorssen became a legal advisor for students charged within the university’s judicial system. His actions earned him an Ivy Day Award from the then university president for his efforts towards protecting freedom of speech on campus. His advocacy in campus attracted many and led to the formation of “Foundation for Individual Rights in Education,” an organization he served as its executive director and CEO until 2004.
While still in his freshman year at the University of Pennsylvania in 1983, his father, a diplomat was falsely imprisoned and subjected to human rights abuse in a Venezuelan jail. Mr. Halvorssen led a campaign for his father’s release, attracting support from International Society of Human Rights, Amnesty International, and many human rights advocates. His father was freed in 1993, and all charges against him dropped. Mr. Halvorssen has a specialty in matters involving dictatorships, human trafficking and threats to democracy. He has lectured about human rights and freedom in various universities throughout the country; he has also been featured by various media outlets like CNN, NBC, and Bloomberg.
Apart from his push for human rights, Halvorssen has been involved in the film production industry where he has produced several films like “Freedom’s Fury,” “The Moon is a Harsh Mistress,” “Hammer & Tickle” among others. Mr. Halvorssen is also the patron of “On Own Feet,” a peace movement dedicated towards charity to children.