Penny Abeywardena

Commissioner for International Affairs, Mayor's Office, City of New York

Abeywardena leads the Mayor's Office for International Affairs, which serves as the primary liaison between the City of New York and the diplomatic community, foreign governments, the United Nations, and the U.S. Department of State. In addition to the formal functions of the office, she is building a global platform from which the City can promote its equity agenda and share policies and best practices globally. Prior to joining Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration, Penny was the Director of Girls and Women Integration at the Clinton Global Initiative. She advised multinational corporations, philanthropists, NGOs, and multilateral institutions to increase investments in gender-focused development initiatives while expanding the community of CGI members who incorporate the gender lens in their work. Penny graduated from the University of Southern California and Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.