Sunday, January 3, 2010

Norma Angélica Cruz Córdoba Person of the Year in Guatemala

For her efforts on behalf of women and children's rights, Norma Angélica Cruz Córdoba was selected 2009 Person of the Year by Prensa Libre, the leading newspaper in Guatemala.

Norma Cruz heads la Fundación Sobrevivientes (the Survivors' Foundation), a foundation that provides assistance to abused women in Guatemala. (Prensa Libre - Edición electrónica - Nacional).Earlier this year, Cruz was recognized with one of The US Secretary of State’s 2009 International Women of Courage Awards. (

During 2009, her Survivors Foundation cared for more than 16,500 cases of violence abuse against women. Her law firm litigated 450 cases in court in the last months, providing legal representation to thousands of women since 2004.
Some 708 women were killed in Guatemala in 2009, based on Interior Ministry figures released on Saturday. According to official figures, murders of women last year were less than in 2008, when 773 women died violent deaths in this Central American country. Most crimes against women have gone unpunished despite the existence, since April 2008, of a specific law against femicide. Guatemala is second in the world in murders of women after Russia, which posts more than 10,000 crimes against women, according to the Human Rights Prosecutor’s Office (LAHT).

"Our main challenge is not to give up and to advance our fight against impunity and fighting for justice on behalf of women victims of abuse and violence in Guatemala," she said.

Norma Cruz was born in Guatemala City in 1962 to her shoemaker father and her domestic cook mother.
Other finalists for the 2009 Person of the Year included Nineth Montenegro, Carlos Castresana, Ricardo Arjona, Monsenior Álvaro Ramazzini y Cruz.
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