Since her appointment in 2008, she has transformed the Foundation, launching a number of programmes that leverage the expertise of Thomson Reuters to trigger change and empower people across the world.
Among them, TrustLaw, the Foundation's global pro bono programme dedicated to spreading the practice of pro bono. TrustLaw connects the best law firms in the world with NGOs and social enterprises working to create social and environmental change; produces groundbreaking legal research; and offers innovative training courses worldwide. Since its inception, TrustLaw has generated over $54 million in free legal support.
Villa is also the founder of Trust Women, a fast-growing movement to empower women and to fight slavery worldwide. At the annual conference held in London, Trust Women delegates take action and forge tangible commitments to empower women to know and defend their rights. Trust Women is also a leading forum to find innovative solutions to fight slavery and human trafficking.
Under Villa’s leadership, the Foundation strengthened its commitment to free and independent journalism. The Foundation’s award-winning editorial team covers issues that mainstream media often forget: from human rights abuses to the social damage poised by endemic corruption.
The Foundation also delivers journalism training and media development projects to strengthen media across the globe, as well as undertakes research into news media through the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at Oxford University.
Prior to joining the Foundation, Villa was Managing Director of Reuters Media and Chairman of Action Images. A French national, she spent the first part of her career at Agence France-Presse (AFP) where she held a number of senior journalistic and management positions.