An international human-rights lawyer for 25 years, Nina Shea joined Hudson Institute as a senior scholar,

For the 10 years prior to joining Hudson, Ms. Shea worked at Freedom House, where she directed the Center for Religious Freedom, an office which she had helped found in 1986 as the Puebla Institute.

Ms. Shea has served as a Commissioner on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom since its founding in 1999. She was appointed as a U.S. delegate to the United Nations' Commission on Human Rights by both Republican and Democratic administrations. where she directs the Center for Religious Freedom, in November 2006.

For over a decade, she has worked extensively for the advancement of individual religious freedom and other human rights in U.S. foreign policy as it confronts Islamist extremism, as well as authoritarian regimes. For seven years, until 2005, she helped organize and lead a coalition of churches and religious groups that worked to end a religious war against Christians, traditional African believers, and dissident Muslims in southern Sudan; in 2004 and 2005, she contributed to the drafting of the Iraqi Constitution's religious freedom provision; and she authored and edited two widely acclaimed reports, Saudi Arabia's Curriculum of Intolerance (2006) and Saudi Publications on Hate Ideology Invade American Mosques (2005), both of which translated and analyzed Saudi governmental publications that teach hatred and violence against the religious "other." She regularly presents testimony before Congress, delivers public lectures, organizes briefings and conferences, and writes frequently on religious freedom issues. Her 1997 book on anti-Christian persecution, In the Lion's Den, remains a standard in the field.

In January 2009, Ms. Shea was appointed as a commissioner on the U.S. National Commission to UNESCO.

Ms. Shea is a member of the bar of the District of Columbia. She is a graduate of Smith College and American University's Washington College of Law.

Commissioner Shea was first appointed to the Commission in 1999 by then-Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert (R-IL) and was reappointed in July 2007 by Rep. John Boehner (R-OH).