Bio: Helene Fisher

Global Gender Persecution Specialist, Open Doors International

Helene Fisher has worked for Open Doors since 2007 and currently acts as the Global Gender Persecution Specialist. She has tracked trends related to women and persecution over the past decade, as Christian women have gone from being perceived mainly as incidental victims of religious persecution to becoming direct strategic targets.

In 2013, Fisher's experience led her to collaboration with World Watch Research, specifically focusing on the preparation and analysis of the innovative Gender Profiles of Persecution, first released as part of the 2018 World Watch List country profiles.

For the past several years, Fisher has taken a special interest in addressing the post-conflict situation of Christian women in Central African Republic and has helped design and implement trauma care training in conjunction with socioeconomic development as part of a broad response to this ongoing conflict situation.

At the moment, she is focusing her consultative efforts on program re-design for Christian women in Open Doors' network in the Middle East. She draws on the deepened insight from the composite Gender Profiles of Persecution combined with a specific framing of the theological distortions which can cause the church to unwittingly become complicit in persecution dynamics thereby compounding the ill-effects of a single aggressive act.

Fisher immigrated to France from the USA in 1990, serving in tandem with her British husband in a missionary support role for local small churches. She simultaneously worked in higher education in France for 15 years, first teaching and then managing a study abroad site. During this time, she earned an M.A. in Cross-cultural Education and Counseling. Fisher also holds a B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Wellesley College.

Fisher initially began her time with Open Doors in the Communications team of the French office in 2007, where she wrote and recorded weekly programs for French Christian television and radio, linking the stories of persecuted Christians to the truths of the Bible and the lives of listeners/viewers. Her more recent writings are published by World Watch Monitor. In 2012, she moved to Open Doors International (ODI) in the role of International Women's Ministry Coordinator.

In her current role as Global Gender Persecution Specialist, Fisher continues to act as a facilitator, strategist, speaker and writer for Open Doors International, highlighting the specific effects of persecution on men and women in a ministry network which covers over 60 countries.