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Operation 1325’s board consists of representatives from our member organizations. The board works with strategic issues which then are executed by the secretariat.

Lena Sundh


Lena is the chairperson of Operation 1325’s board. She has an extensive knowledge of working with women, peace and security in an international context. She was previously the Swedish Ambassador in Angola and has many years’ experience as a diplomat. She has experience from working within the United Nations system, where she has acted as Deputy Secretary-General of the Secretary-General of the United Nations Peacekeeping Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, MONUSCO. She has also worked as political advisor at the Swedish representation in New York and represented Sweden at numerous UN conferences and meetings, such as the “Fourth Women’s Conference in Beijing”. Lena has further been active in Thailand, Namibia, Morocco and Geneva.

She is currently involved with the UD/FBA female mediation network focusing on women’s participation in peace processes. ´

Gunnel Bemerfeldt

Gunnel has been a member of the board since SKV became a member of Operation 1325 in 2014. Her involvement in women, peace, and security dates back a long time, partly in Women for Peace shortly after they were founded in the late 80s and then also in SKV since the beginning of the 90s.

Topics that are particularly important to discuss are honor cultures and norms of masculinity. A good way to initiate change is to create discussions and thereby try to break existing trends that otherwise appear cemented. Youth is therefore an important target group because they have the opportunity to come up with new insights and perspectives.

Cecilia Ralfe Stelander

Cecilia has been a member since 2013, where she represents the Swedish Ecumenical Women’s Council. Cecilia then replaced Carin Gardbring who was chairman of SEK and one of the founders of Operation 1325. In addition to the Swedish Ecumenical Women’s Council, Cecilia is also part of the European Ecumenical Women’s Council.

Her interest in gender equality was first sparked in the context of sports, youth and peace, and these issues remain important to Cecilia. Youth is important because they come up with new perspectives and add new energy to discussions. Regarding sports, Cecilia is a qualified performer of aikido where she is the highest ranked in Sweden and among the highest rated also in Europe and the world. Cecilia is an everyday professional psychotherapist in Uppsala.

Aase Smedler

Aase has been co-opted to Operation 1325’s board since 2017 as a representative for Sveriges Kvinnolobby. She is a civil engineer and development specialist with many years of experience working for the UN. Gender equality and women’s rights have been a recurring theme throughout her professional life. Especially the Beijing Platform for Action in 1995 was inspiring.

Resolution 1325 in the year of 2000 was an outcome of the 90’s being more progressive and focused on gender equality, and was a turning point for the otherwise male-dominated security sector. The UN Security Council work has continued and yielded opportunities for active female participants, and responsibility in the sectors of conflict and security.

Maria Loa Sandberg

Maria has been an adjunct to the board since 2017 as a representative of the Svenska Kvinnors Vänsterförbund. Her area of ​​responsibility on the board is to be treasurer. When Maria is not doing board work for Operation 1325, she is an active member of other women’s organizations, and chairperson of Kvinnors Vänsterförbund Värmland. She has previously spent almost 30 years working as a treatment assistant in Stockholm municipality.

Lena Angviken

Lena has been a board member since 2019 and representative for Kvinnor för Fred (KFF). She is engaged in both KFF and Operation 1325 separately but is also keen to promote collaboration projects between the organizations. Nuclear resistance is one of Lena’s priority issues, and the reason she joined KFF, alongside the climate crisis. She believes education and information is key to development as she states “a women will not demand her rights unless she knows she has rights”.  

Louvisa Grotte

Louvisa Grotte is a previous intern at Operation 1325. After concluded internship she became a board member and representative for member organization RIFFI. Louvisa has a Master’s Degree in Political Science from Copenhagen University from which she graduated earlier this year. She has previously worked with development issues in Costa Rica and completed an internship at the Swedish embassy in Mexico.  

Ferah Bozcali

Ferah Bozcali is a board member and representative for the organization Kvinnor för Fred (KFF) where she has been an employee since 1993. She has a long commitment to women, peace and security as well as environmental issues and has worked with these issues in an international context for many years. Her main incentives in working for KFF is to actively engage in nuclear resistance, women’s participation in peace processes and a more equal world. Besides KFF and Operation 1325 she is also engaged in AMARA, a Kurdish women’s organization.   

The senior council

The senior council was founded in 2019 as an expert council to the organization’s board. By establishing a discussion forum for women with long experience of work and commitment in women, peace and security, Operation 1325 wants to develop the organization’s strategic future and external analysis. The senior council consists of Ingela Mårtensson, Anita Klum, Eva Zetterberg, Birgitta Holst Alani, Ann Svensén and Maria Luisa Bartolomei.