Wolfgang Kaleck founded the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights with other internationally renowned lawyers in Berlin in 2007. Kaleck has served as the organization’s general secretary since its foundation.
Kaleck previously worked as a criminal law attorney at the Hummel.Kaleck.Rechtsanwälte law firm, which he co-founded in 1991. Since 1998, he has been involved in the Koalition gegen Straflosigkeit (Coalition against Impunity), which fights to hold Argentinian military officials accountable for the murder and disappearance of German citizens during the Argentine dictatorship. Between 2004 and 2008, he worked with the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights to pursue criminal proceedings against members of the US military, including former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.
Kaleck is a board member of the Centre of European Law and Politics at the University of Bremen, the Forum for International and Criminal and Humanitarian Law, the lawyers collective CCAJAR in Colombia, the Mexican non-governmental organization ProDESC, FIAN Germany as well as the Paul Grueninger Foundation.
In 2020, Kaleck was Scholar-in-Residence at the Sorensen Center for International Peace and Justice at the CUNY School of Law in New York City. There, he led a series of human rights talks about transnational human rights litigation, social movements, business and human rights, and more.
For his work as lawyer and founder of ECCHR, Kaleck has been honored with multiple awards: