Richard Reoch has spent most of his working life in the service of international public affairs organizations. He has been particularly engaged in human rights, conflict resolution and environmental protection.
Born in Toronto, Canada, in 1948 he studied literature and aesthetics at Trinity College, University of Toronto. He then travelled to London, England, to begin working at the headquarters of the human rights organization, Amnesty International. For much of his 23 years there, he was the global media chief, speaking to the press and appearing on TV and radio worldwide.
In the 1990s he was asked by the musician Sting to help establish the Rainforest Foundation. He remains one of its longest-serving trustees. He is also the chairperson of the International Working Group on Sri Lanka, a consortium of senior diplomats and officials of major agencies supporting the search for a durable peace in Sri Lanka.
His work has taken him to more than 40 countries. He has given public presentations and addresses to community organizations and professional bodies that include: the Foreign Press Association (London), the Press Club of India, the Foreign Correspondents' Clubs of Hong Kong and Japan, the Bar Associations of Karachi, Hyderabad and Kathmandu, the United Nations Association of Great Britain, the United Kingdom Assistant Prison Governors' Association, and the Senior Command Course for Senior Police Officers in the United Kingdom.
He has led international consultations on peace and justice issues in Ireland (north and south), and been an adviser to the Indo-British Project on the Prevention of Torture on behalf of the Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture.
He is the editor of Human Rights: the new consensus, the report from the United Nations World Conference on Human Rights, and of the official field manual, Preventing Torture, of the 55-nation Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. In 2002, he was appointed President of Shambhala, worldwide contemplative community devoted to creating enlightened society.