IPPF Individual Volunteer Award for Contributions to Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights

Presentation by Jacqueline Sharpe, President of IPPF, Nov 26, 2011, London

Alex Sanger is an ideal volunteer, fully committed to our vision, richly endowed with all the qualities that enable him to make effective contributions to IPPF, generous both with his time and financial resources.

Alex learned about unmet need in the lap of his grandmother, Margaret Sanger, who founded the birth control movement 90 years ago and travelled extensively throughout the world to lay the groundwork for assembling the international group that created IPPF in India in 1952.

Alex was not always a volunteer. Until 2000 he was the CEO of Planned Parenthood of New York City, PPNYC, one of the largest affiliates in the international family planning community. With a budget of over $20 million dollars, PPNYC serves a diverse population of over 75,000 New Yorkers with innovative medical and educational programs, and millions more through its extensive advocacy initiatives.

As a volunteer, he is currently member of the IPPF/WHR Regional board, and the chair of International Planned Parenthood Council, which is fully dedicated to fund raising for IPPF. As such, he travels extensively using his remarkable oratorical skills to motivate individuals – both millionaires and less endowed regular citizens as well – to support our fellow citizens who are vulnerable and don’t have access to contraception unless IPPF helps them. He walks the talk and uses very creative techniques. For instance, recently, when he sold his apartment, he included in the deal a generous donation to IPPF.

A prolific writer, he is the author of the book Beyond choices: Reproductive Freedom in the 21st Century, and is frequently featured with articles in major newspapers and in websites and blogs. Recently Alex published key articles in defense of our movement when one of the most radical candidates for President of the United States made some blatantly false accusations that had wide repercussions.

Alex cares about every aspect of our work. In the last few years – working closely with the staff in a very respectful way as always – Alex headed a real estate committee of the IPPFWHR Board. Numerous hours were dedicated to major and minor decisions, and detailed – and humorous – reports kept the whole board in the loop. Carmen and her staff were extremely grateful for his guidance and support – and for the state of the art coffee machine he donated to the new office. He is also a great cook, annually contributing the best brownies to the pot-luck lunch of the WHR office, when staff feast on the culinary excellence of their peers who represent the diverse cuisine of the whole region.

Ideas, financial donations and even food: we are honored to make Alex Sanger the recipient of the individual Volunteer Award.

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