Tribute to Mary Alison McLean - Representative, UN Women Multi-Country Office for the Caribbean (MCO-Caribbean)
Date: Monday, June 1, 2020
UN Women Multi-Country Office for the Caribbean (MCO-Caribbean) regrets to announce the passing of our Representative, Mrs. M. Alison McLean. Mrs. McLean, a national of Jamaica, served as Representative of MCO-Caribbean from 17 May 2017 to 1 June 2020.
Alison was an ambassador for gender equality, leading the MCO-Caribbean in working with Governments of the Caribbean, NGOs, civil society and organisations on gender equality legislation, gender education, employment opportunities and services for women and men of the Caribbean. She also remained a strong advocate for children’s rights.
Prior to her appointment as Representative, Alison served as Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport in Jamaica, and as the Chief Technical Director/Principal Director of the Office of the Prime Minister in Jamaica. She worked as a Special Advocate for Children in the USA and served as the Chief Executive Officer for the Child Development Agency in Jamaica. She lectured for nearly two (2) decades at the University of the West Indies on International Relations and Negotiations.
Alison led the MCO Caribbean for 3 years and in that time we were able to learn from her expertise, shared in that distinctive and will be forever missed pitch of voice. We learned her love for all things Jamaican and Caribbean, like the Caribbean Alison was "likkle but tallawah". Alison taught us what it means to fight strategically for what is important and to never stop fighting. She always reminded us we are here to serve. Alison lived intersectionality and emphasized why right now more than ever we had to address all inequalities in order to achieve our goals of gender equality and human rights realized for all.
Alison felt deeply, was loyal and protective of her staff and those who she loved. As she moved on to new assignments, we were all reminded of her enduring connections with all those who still spoke of her impact from the UWI, those who still called her their Permanent Secretary and finally our Representative. We know she loved us and all of our partners. We loved her deeply as well and we will honour her in our continued commitment to the women and girls, men and boys of this region, for gender equality.
We extend heartfelt condolences to her sons, her family and dear friends. We mourn her loss deeply and will do our best to do justice to her life and legacy.
Please note that the MCO will be closed this week. We will provide an update later this week with regards to memorials.