Thor Halvorssen is a prolific human rights activist and a film producer. He fights for the rights of people, particularly those who are powerless. Thor started his career as an advocate for human rights in 1989 when he was involved in the fight against South Africa’s Apartheid. Thor was in his adolescence at this time, but he had a strong passion within him towards defending the freedom for his fellow human beings. Thor’s father was taken as a political prisoner in Venezuela. Thor started protesting for his release. He organized for protests after seeking help from the Amnesty International. Several human rights organizations also helped him to champion for the liberation of his father. Thor’s dad was released from prison after his persistent and continuous protests. Thor had become a famous human rights activist by this time. Those who had relatives that had been wrongfully jailed started going to him for help.
Thor started a Human Rights Foundation that was based in New York after his mother’s shooting in 2004. The shooting happened while she was taking part in a political protest. The primary purpose of the foundation was to promote democracy and tolerance in America and to bring freedom to political prisoners. The foundation has been able to secure the release of seven prisoners since it was founded. They have also published two books that dwell on individual rights and state responsibilities. The foundation has given amicus briefs in significant cases of human rights internationally. It has presented evidence to truth commissions. Thor also founded Oslo Freedom Forum where he serves as its CEO. This is an annual gathering that is popularly known as “a spectacular festival for human rights.” The forum is fast grown and is often compared with the Davos Economic Forum.
Thor is the patron of a children’s peace movement in Prague known as On Own Feet. Thor holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and History which he earned from the University of Pennsylvania. Thor sometimes lectures on the subject of human rights in various institutions. He was once invited to speak in the British parliament on human rights matters. He is involved in the fields of slavery, human trafficking, threats to democracy, and dictatorship. Thor is now famous all over the world as an activist who would go to any lengths to bring freedom to humanity due to his strong participation on issues of human rights.