Anne Nelson is an internationally recognized author and educator who has published on a broad range of themes relating to international human rights, freedom of expression, and the role of media in society.  She began her career as a war correspondent in El Salvador and Guatemala, and served as the first staff member to cover the Americas at Human Rights Watch.  She later served as the executive director of the Committee to Protect Journalists and the director of the international program at the Columbia School of Journalism, where she instituted the first class on human rights reporting.   Since 2002 she has been teaching at SIPA, where she created the first course on digital media.  Nelson has written and consulted on international media topics for a broad range of organizations, including the Open Society Foundations, the Knight Foundation, BBC Media Action and the Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA).  Her articles and reports can be found at Nelson has also pursued a parallel career as author and playwright.  Her journalism on the Philippines won the Livingston Award for best international reporting.  She received a Guggenheim Fellowship in support of her 2009 book “Red Orchestra,” on the anti-Nazi resistance in Berlin.   Her post-9/11 play, “The Guys,” has been produced in 50 states and 15 countries, and was made into a feature film starring Sigourney Weaver.  She is currently writing a book about a network to rescue Jewish children in Occupied Paris.  Nelson is a graduate of Yale University, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.


Anne Nelson, Shadow Network: Media, Money and the Secret Hub of the Radical Right (New York, NY: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2019).

Other Articles

Anne Nelson and Debi Spindleman, “Business Unusual in Cuba: Letter from Havana,” Foreign Affairs, 5 April 2016, <> (5 April 2016).