International Commission on Couple and Family Relations


A Board of ten to twelve members drawn from different regions of the world plans and manages the annual conferences and the Commission’s international communications.

Anne BergerAnne Berger (Chair)
Anne Berger (USA) is a partner in the Woburn, MA, law firm of Berger & Small (J.D.: Boston University School of Law). She has written and lectured extensively on family law and related issues. She was a council member of the Family Law Section of the Massachusetts Bar Association (MBA) from 1996 to 1999. She has been a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers since 1987 and of the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers since 1997. Ms Berger is a past Massachusetts Chapter Delegate to the Board of Governors of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and serves as a USA Chapter delegate to the Board of Governors of the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. She is also on the Board of the AAML Foundation. Ms Berger is a Trustee of the ICCFR Trust.
Sven Iversen (Treasurer)
Sven Iversen (Germany) is General Manager of the Association of German Family Organisations (AGF). AGF promotes dialogue between organisations and individuals that deal with or are responsible for family policy and among other players on a national and international level. Through its publications, conferences and discussions with players in politics, science and civil social organisations, AGF constructs and disseminates its positions on current developments in family politics and legislation. For AGF, family policy is a central field in social policy, a cross-sectoral issue that has effects in various different political areas. Sven is a political scientist, holds an MBA and is also a member of the Administrative Council of the Confederation of Family Organisations in the European Union (COFACE – Families Europe). He joined the ICCFR Board in 2015.
Francesco Belletti ,pres. Forum delle associazioni famigliari, con la famigliaFrancesco Belletti (Italy) is the Director of the International Centre for Family Studies (CISF) in Milan, a non-profit independent research centre on family relations and family policies. A sociologist, he graduated in Political Science from the University of Milan. From 1991/92 to 2005/06, he was Adjunct Professor at the Catholic University of Milan, teaching courses for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Social Work. From 2009 until 2015, he was President of the National Forum of Family Associations, a network of family associations lobbying for better family policies in Italy. His main interests are related to social and family policies and welfare studies. He writes regularly in popular and scientific magazines and journals and reviews works on these topics.
Marie de BlicMarie de Blic (France) was a member of the UNAF Board from 2003 to 2013. UNAF is an umbrella organisation for the family associations in France and a partner with the government. Marie was also involved in the CNAFC, a  voluntary association that supports and promotes the family within society, notably in the context of the values of the Catholic Church. Particular areas of her work include the situation of housewives, reconciliation between family and professional life and parenthood. A graduate in law, she was an inspector of health and social affairs for the French administration. She is now involved in political activity, seeking improvements to social policy. She is married and has a large family.
Christine Galea (Malta) studied at the University of Malta, where she obtained a Master of Arts in Family Ministry in 2012. She is the Secretary-General of the Cana Movement, a voluntary organisation within the Catholic Church, which provides marriage education and enrichment programmes and works with couples and families facing difficulties. Christine is also a Board member of Genesis2 – Institute for Marriage and the Family, which promotes reflection about the person, marriage and family from several perspectives, through training, witness and peer support.
Katharine HillKatharine Hill (UK) is Director of Family Policy at Care for the Family, a national charity which aims to strengthen family life and help families in difficulty. Katharine leads on Care for the Family’s policy agenda representing the organisation at the highest level of government. She is Co-Chair of Kids in the Middle, a policy-focused coalition of 28 national family charities and 29 agony aunts. She speaks and writes widely on family issues. Prior to joining Care for the Family in 2004 Katharine was a solicitor, specialising in family law. Her work centred on divorce, including custody and finance, care proceedings and other aspects of family breakdown. For a number of years, Katharine also ran a Legal Advice Centre in a socially deprived area of Bristol, which gave her a keen understanding of the legal and sociological issues surrounding marriage and family breakdown. Katharine has also served as a magistrate in Bristol. Katharine is an established speaker who has addressed thousands of people across the UK on marriage and parenting issues. Together with her husband, Richard, she co-authored The Rules of Engagement, a book for newly engaged couples, which looks at the practicalities of getting married alongside the principles of building a sound, lasting relationship. She draws on her personal and professional knowledge in articles for newspapers and magazines, as well as in national and local broadcast interviews. With four children, Katharine has significant experience as a parent and a working mother. She lives near Bristol with her family.
Anne HollondsAnne Hollonds (Australia) As Director of the Australian Institute of Family Studies (, Anne is responsible for conducting research and providing advice to Australian governments on child and family wellbeing. The Institute conducts quantitative and qualitative research, and translates findings, to improve the effectiveness of policy, systems and services for children and families. A leading voice on child and family wellbeing, Anne is a psychologist and former CEO with over 35 years’ experience in policy and practice in social services, health and education for children and families.
Anita RodarteAnita Rodarte (USA) For more than 30 years, Anita I. Rodarte has devoted her law practice to assisting clients in family law matters. Anita’s extensive experience includes negotiated settlement and litigation of cases involving complex asset valuation and division, spousal support, parenting and custody conflicts, interstate custody and child support disputes, guardianship of minors and enforcement of parental access and support issues. Anita is a member of numerous professional organizations relating to family law. She is a fellow in the prestigious American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) and President 2016-17 of the AAML Foundation, the charitable companion organisation to the AAML. Anita was honoured as the 2015 Family Law Practitioner of the Year in the Kansas City, Missouri area, has received peer recognition as one of Super Lawyers Top 50 Women Lawyers in Missouri and Kansas and is regularly listed in Best Lawyers in America in the field of Family. Anita is a frequent lecturer on family law topics.
Suzie Thorn (USA) is a prominent matrimonial lawyer in San Francisco. She is President of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Foundation, of the Suzie S Thorn Family Foundation and of Schapiro-Thorn, Inc. Her initial contact with ICCFR resulted from liaison between the Commission and Association of Family and Conciliation Courts in 1993. She became a Board member in 1995. She was the innovative founder of the ICCFR Trust, of which she is now a trustee.
Heli VaaranenHeli Vaaranen (Finland) is the Director of the Couple Relationships Centre at the Family Federation of Finland. She is a practitioner of individual and couples therapy, as well as leader of the couple relationships project at the Family Federation. Her earlier career was in social sciences at the University of Helsinki, where she defended her dissertation in Youth Studies in 2004. The couple relationship was the focus of her postdoctoral studies. Heli has given research lectures internationally and still strives to pursue research, aside from her other professional duties. Currently, she is researching infidelity.
Jean-Pierre Van HeeJean-Pierre Vanhee (Belgium) studied philosophy at the Free University of Brussels and has a PhD in Educational Sciences. He is professor at the same university. He is also General Director of the Flemish Agency for Youth Wellbeing. He agreed to become a member of the ICCFR Board representing Belgium-Flanders in 2013 because he believes in the importance of the dissemination of knowledge about community-based relationships worldwide by means of conferences.


Ingrid CranfieldIngrid Cranfield (UK) is an author, editor, translator and college lecturer. Between 2010 and 2014, she was an elected councillor and Deputy Mayor in the London Borough of Enfield. Aside from her professional work, she has been involved all her adult life in educational, charity and community work, on a voluntary basis. She greatly enjoys her role as Administrator to the ICCFR, whose mission reflects all the principles and issues she has long been concerned with.