Irene Perureña , M.A. ’91

Published: April 15, 2010

Author: Renée LaReau

Irene Purenena

Irene Perureña is the Executive Vice President of Ciudad del Saber (City of Knowledge) Foundation in Panama City. Irene is responsible for supervising the organization's vice presidents and directors and managing the Foundation's operations. 

The City of Knowledge was established to promote "business, academic, scientific, and humanistic collaboration" in the pursuit of human and sustainable development. This group of international organizations, academic centers, and technology companies is designed to promote synergy among people and institutions of diverse backgrounds. It occupies a complex that until 1999 was a military base for U.S. soldiers assigned to protect the Panama Canal.

Prior to taking on this leadership role, Irene recruited, connected, and supported nongovernmental organizations that focused on humanitarian aid, human rights, peace, conflict resolution and human development at the City of Knowledge. 

A former Fulbright scholar, Irene graduated from Notre Dame in 1991 with master's degrees in peace studies and government. She holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from Santa Maria la Antigua University in Panama, her home country.

Irene, a longtime human rights advocate and educator, returned to Notre Dame in April 2010 where she was honored with the Kroc Institute's Distinguished Alumni Award.

Updated February 2018.