Diplomat. Statesman. Peacemaker. Humanitarian.

It is with this pride that we honor our former board chair, Richard C. Holbrooke, through our RICHARD C. HOLBROOKE Legacy Giving Program. All of us at RI are so grateful for our generous supporters who believe in our mission and our work. At the heart of this generosity are those who have made a thoughtful decision to include RI in their estate planning. As a supporter of RI, we hope that you will consider joining this effort by remembering Refugees International in your estate plan.



Your bequest will help RI:

  • Guarantee the future of the only US-based, fully independent advocacy organization dedicated solely to fighting to save the lives of the world’s refugees and displaced people. RI does not accept funding from any government or from the United Nations, so our advocacy is never constrained nor encumbered.
  • Enable RI to expand its work in more countries to save more lives each year. Currently, there are more than 50 million people around the world who have been displaced due to conflict or persecution. Unfortunately, each year the numbers continue to grow due to rising conflict, violence and instability.
  • Help RI establish a sustainable Emergency Response Fund to allow our team to address new, emergent humanitarian disasters as soon as they unfold. 

How to include Refugees International in your will:

A bequest made in your will or trust will help secure Refugees International’s mission and work into the future. There are two easy ways to remember RI in your will:

  • A specific bequest. This directs a fixed dollar amount or particular assets, such as securities or property.
  • A residuary bequest directs all of a percentage of your estate, after specific gifts to other beneficiaries, have been fulfilled. No percentage is too small and all amounts will make an impact,on our work. 

You may designate your bequest in honor of a loved one. RI prefers that bequests be provided for general operating purposes (an unrestricted donation), so that we may use your generous gift in the areas that are most needed.


We would be so grateful if you would notify us that you have named Refugees International in your will, trust or other plan. We would very much like the opportunity to thank you for your lifesaving gift to help the world’s most vulnerable people. Please contact Lisa Cantu-Parks, vice president of philanthropy, at lisa@refintl.org or 202-540-7025.


Richard led Refugees International (RI) as chairman of the board for four years from 1996-1999, bringing his decades-long expertise and compassion to strengthen RI’s advocacy for the world’s most vulnerable people.

During his tenure as RI’s board chair, Richard transformed this small advocacy organization focused historically on Indochinese refugees into a global voice for refugees displaced by conflict, persecution and natural disaster and for the millions who are internally displaced.

A son of immigrants from Europe, Richard always argued that internally displaced people should have the same rights as refugees under the Geneva Convention and he never gave up fighting for those rights.

What we loved about Richard was not only his intellectual heft and his unmatched diplomatic skills but his ability to be an effective, relentless advocate for the world’s most vulnerable people. Former President George H. W. Bush described Mr. Holbrooke to the New York Times’ columnist Roger Cohen as “the most persistent advocate I’ve ever run into.” His nickname, “The Bulldozer,” made us proud, for it was his dogged determination that helped saved countless lives throughout his career.