Dévora Kestel is a senior mental health policy specialist with over 30 years of international experience implementing and advising on national policies related to mental health. She strongly advocates for the rights of people with mental health issues. In 2000, she joined the World Health Organization (WHO) as a mental health officer in Kosovo and later in Albania. She became the country’s WHO Representative. In 2007 Ms. Kestel joined the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) as the Sub-regional Mental Health Advisor for the English-Speaking Caribbean Countries based in Barbados. In 2011 Ms. Kestel was appointed Regional Mental Health Advisor in Washington DC, providing technical cooperation in the mental health field to the entire region. In 2015 she became Unit Chief for Mental Health and Substance Use at PAHO/WHO. Ms. Kestel has contributed to and co-authored several publications on mental health. Since 2019, Ms. Kestel has been the WHO Director of the Department of Mental Health and Substance Use.