Thor Halvorssen is half Venezuelan, half Norwegian Film producer, Human rights Activists, and the founder of Human Rights Foundation, which is based in New York. Halvorssen was born in Caracas and descends from a family of royals and very influential freedom fighters. His mother, for example, is a descendant of Cristobal Mendoza, the first President of Venezuela. Thor is well versed in matters to do with activism and has experienced firsthand effects after his father subjected to severe torture while in Caracas prison for exposing corruption. Thor lost his mother to a shooting that happened during an anti-Hugo Chavez demonstration.
Halvorssen is the founder of Oslo Freedom Forum, a gathering that is held annually, devoted for human rights. He is also a Patron for Children’s Peace Movement, a children’s rights group based in Czech. Thor has become an influential public figure with his opinions, getting publications from large media houses and newspapers such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Nation and Time Magazine. He has also appeared for interviews in Mainstream Media houses such as BBC News, al-Jazeera, CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News Channel. In 2010, Thor made a stage appearance at TEDx, hosted at the University of Pennsylvania.
Prior to his influential personality and popularity in his work, Thor has found himself on the wrong side of the law many times. One event includes when he had traveled to interview the Unified Buddhist Church of Vietnam, Patriarch Thich Quang Do, on why his church was banned, and he was put under house arrest for 28 years. Vietnamese authorities arrested and detained him together with his cameraman, but his camera man was fortunate to sneak out with his interview record.
Thor states that he will maintain a strong stand against tyranny and discrimination. Through his foundation, this works closely with other affiliate foundations. His Foundation has devoted to promoting political rights and liberate political prisoners. Since its inception, the HRF has achieved many missions such as ensured release of seven political prisoners and provided evidence to many major human rights international cases around the world.