Her Excellency Ms. Thilmeeza Hussain was appointed as the Ambassador of the Maldives to the United States and the Permanent Representative of the Maldives to the United Nations on 18 April 2019 and assumed work at the Mission on 7 May 2019.
After the coup d’état that overthrew the first democratic government in the Maldives, in 2012, she resigned from her previous position she held as the Deputy Permanent Representative at the Permanent Mission of the Maldives to the United Nations and Non-Resident Deputy Ambassador to The United States and Canada, in New York (November 2009 to February 2012). Since then, till her present appointment she was a key member of the Foreign Relations Committee (FRC) of the then main opposition party, the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), where she lobbied to maintain close relations with the government of the United States and other agencies to garner support in the restoration of democracy in the country.
During her tenure as the Deputy Permanent Representative at the Permanent Mission of the Maldives to the United Nations, in New York, she held the Climate Change and Sustainable Development portfolio. She also led the work of Commercial Diplomacy at the Mission and was responsible for marketing various Maldivian government investment opportunities in the United States and Canada.
In addition to this Ambassador Hussain championed the climate change and sustainable development agenda, where she was the lead negotiator for the Maldives, at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) conference for two consecutive years, Co-chaired the Sustainable Development Working Group for the 48-members of Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS). She led the negotiations on the climate mitigation track for the Maldives at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) from 2010 to 2012, Co-chaired many AOSIS working groups including, Working Group on 5 Year Review of Mauritius Strategy for Implementation (MSI) of Barbados Program of Action (BPOA). She also facilitated various resolution during the sessions of the UN General Assembly for the Group of 77 and China.
Other important positions that Ambassador Hussain held include Minister of State for Home Affairs (North Province) during President Nasheed’s government when decentralization of governance was a priority and rolled out for the first time.
Prior to her appointment, Ambassador Hussain was an Adjunct Professor of Sustainability in Ramapo College, New Jersey, United States of America teaching World Sustainability at the School of Social Sciences and Human Services since 2015. She held the position of Co-Chair of Socially and Economically just Adaptation and Mitigation team of the United States Climate Action Network (USCAN), since 2016. Sustainability and environmental justice is one of her areas of personal interest as well.
In addition to her formal work, Ambassador Hussain has a kinship for doing non-profit work for social good. The main areas of her work include gender and climate justice whereby she founded the Voice of Women (VoW) in the Maldives and was an Advisory Council Member for Climate Wise Women (CWW), and Women’s Earth Climate Action Network (WECAN), to advocate for the cause. She was also named as a prestigious Aspen New Voices Fellow for the year 2018-2019 at the Aspen Institute.
Ambassador Hussain holds a Master of Science in Business Management from Colorado Technical University; United States and Bachelor of Commerce from Murdoch University; Perth, Australia.
Ambassador Hussain is married to Mohamed Shaheen, and they have a seven-year-old son. In her spare time, she enjoys baking and painting. Snorkeling and being in the ocean and beach, close to nature is what she enjoys most.