Youssef Farhat
Executive Director

“I strongly believe in the work of the Center as it presents a holistic strategic approach to human rights work; a framework firmly rooted in a much needed forward-looking vision. My goal is to ensure it remains a collaborative space for global scholars and practitioners to forge efforts at the nexus of research and advocacy.”

Youssef brings over ten years of human rights experience and leadership to the Center and champions this role alongside a talented team of scholars and advocates, and the interdisciplinary direction of four faculty directors renowned in their fields.

In addition to supporting executive dimensions of all areas of work and clusters at the Center, he is one of the Future of Human Rights and Governance program and gathering (FORGE) curators, and oversees all student-oriented programs and engagements.

Youssef’s commitment to practice-based education and scholarship is a common thread in his career path especially during his integral role as part of the University of Dayton Human Rights Center founding team. As a lecturer, he taught human rights courses centralizing engaged learning and advocacy projects as well as developed and managed the Malawi Research Practicum, a fellowship program that draws on transdisciplinary research and trains cohorts of students to conduct human rights research in the Global South. He led the Center’s communications and partnerships efforts, including planning and managing four biannual Social Practice of Human Rights Conferences.

Prior to moving to the U.S., Youssef worked in global development spaces with civil society organizations as well as the United Nations Development Programme and the U.S. Agency for International Development in Beirut, Lebanon as a multilingual researcher and coordinator for a series of programs in areas of education, social and economic rights, sustainability, and gender.