Alums Kaitlin Ball and Eric Heath publish in International Legal Materials

Delighted to see the bylines of 2 recent graduates of the University of Georgia School of Law in the newest edition of International Legal Materials.

An American Society of International Law publication, ILM reprints decisions, treaties, and other newly issued documents reflecting important developments in international law. Each is preceded by an Introductory Note which explains and analyzes the document. Contributing such Notes to Volume 56, Issue 1, of ILM –  available online via open access for a limited period – are:

Kaitlin M. Ball (J.D. 2014), who is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Politics & International Studies, University of Cambridge, England. While at Georgia Law, Kaitlin served as Student President of the worldwide International Law Students Association, and was a Global Extern at the U.S. Department of State Office of Legal Adviser for Private International Law, at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe mission in Sarajevo, Bosnia, and at the nongovernmental organization Human Rights League in Bratislava, Slovakia. Her ILM Introductory Note is entitled “African Union Convention on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection.”

Eric A. Heath (J.D. 2015), who serves on the Legislative Staff of U.S. Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-Pennsylvania) in Washington, D.C. Immediately before taking that position, Eric served as an ASIL Fellow and also earned his LL.M. degree in International Economic Law from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. While at Georgia Law, he was a Global Extern at UNESCO, in Paris, France, and published in our Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law. His ILM Introductory Note is entitled “Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Kigali Amendment).”

Georgia Law team in Vienna for Vis International Arbitration Moot

Delighted to introduce the representatives of the University of Georgia School of Law who are competing this week in Vienna, Austria, at the 24th Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot. They continue a long Georgia Law tradition of participation in this annual event.

At either end are two Associates at King & Spalding LLP in Atlanta: Sara Sargeantson Burns, team coach, and Christopher Smith, who was a member of Georgia Law’s Vis team while earning his J.D. degree here; in the middle is 3L Emily Cox, a member of last year’s competition team and this year its student coach. Also pictured, from the left of Burns to right, are 2L team members Jared Magnuson, Victoria Barker, Maria Kachniarz, and Wheaton Webb.

Viel Glück!

Distinguished alumna Ertharin Cousin joins our Center Council

We are deeply honored to announce that one of our distinguished international law alumnae, Ertharin Cousin, has become a member of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Council.

Cousin has just completed a five-year term as Executive Director of the United Nations’ World Food Programme. In that role, she led the world’s largest humanitarian organization. Founded in 1961, WFP has more than 11,000 staffers, who combat hunger and food insecurity on behalf of more than 80 million persons in 82 countries. (credit for photo above)

She earned her J.D. degree from the University of Georgia School of Law in 1982. While here, she took international law classes with our Center’s namesake, Dean Rusk, who was a Georgia Law professor for many years after serving in the Kennedy and Johnson administrations as the United States’ second-longest-serving Secretary of State. Cousin also holds a B.A. degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and was one of the first women to graduate from Lane Tech, a prestigious and traditionally male-only public high school in the same city.

She returned to Georgia Law’s Athens campus last month to receive our alum association’s Distinguished Service Scroll Award. While here, she discussed her work at WFP and her ongoing commitment to end hunger to a group of students now enrolled in international law classes. Cousin stressed that even as direct food aid was provided in the short term, over the long term communities must be given opportunities to provided for themselves, remarking:

“I never met a mother in all the places I’ve visited who wanted to stand in line to feed her children.”

Anticipating her departure from WFP, which took place on April 4, Cousin told students that she planned to continue strategizing to bring an end to hunger as a Visiting Fellow at Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute. She said:

“I’m just changing chairs.”

Immediately before taking up the post at WFP, Cousin served in Rome, by appointment of President Barack Obama, as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture, and as head of the U.S. Mission to the U.N. Agencies in Rome. Her career also included many private- and public-sector posts. During the centennial Olympic Games, held in 1996 in Atlanta, she served as Senior Advisor to Secretary of State Warren Christopher.

In becoming a member of the Dean Rusk International Law Center Council, Cousin joins other Georgia Law graduates, faculty members, and friends who advise and support the work of the Center.

New book on arbitration by Professor Won Kidane, Georgia Law LLM alum

Pleased to announce the publication of a book by our alumnus, Won L. Kidane (left), an Associate Professor at Seattle University School of Law in Washington state.

The Culture of International Arbitration has just been released by Oxford University Press. It’s the 4th book by Kidane, who earned his Georgia Law LL.M. degree in 1997; in 2001, he earned a J.D. degree from the University of Illinois. He was a 2014 Fulbright Scholar in Ethiopia, where he’d completed his initial legal studies in 1993. Kidane practiced at two Washington, D.C., law firms and taught at Penn State’s Dickinson School of Law before joining the faculty at Seattle, where he teaches international arbitration and immigration law.

Here’s a description of his new book:

Although international arbitration has emerged as a credible means of resolution of transnational disputes involving parties from diverse cultures, the effects of culture on the accuracy, efficiency, fairness, and legitimacy of international arbitration is a surprisingly neglected topic within the existing literature. The Culture of International Arbitration fills that gap by providing an in-depth study of the role of culture in modern day arbitral proceedings. It contains a detailed analysis of how cultural miscommunication affects the accuracy, efficiency, fairness, and legitimacy in both commercial and investment arbitration when the arbitrators and the parties, their counsel and witnesses come from diverse legal traditions and cultures. The book provides a comprehensive definition of culture, and methodically documents and examines the epistemology of determining facts in various legal traditions and how the mixing of traditions influences the outcome. By so doing, the book demonstrates the acute need for increasing cultural diversity among arbitrators and counsel while securing appropriate levels of cultural competence. To provide an accurate picture, Kidane conducted interviews with leading international jurists from diverse legal traditions with first-hand experience of the complicating effects of culture in legal proceedings. Given the insights and information on the rules and expectations of the various legal traditions and their convergence in modern day international arbitration practice, this book challenges assumptions and can offer a unique and useful perspective to all practitioners, academics, policy makers, students of international arbitration.

Distinguished alumnus Jean-Marie Henckaerts joins our Center Council

Honored to announce that one of our distinguished international law alumni, Dr. Jean-Marie Henckaerts, has become a member of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Council. Henckaerts earned his Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree here at the University of Georgia School of Law in 1990.

Based in Geneva, Switzerland, Henckaerts is Legal Adviser in the Legal Division of the International Committee of the Red Cross. In that capacity, he leads the unit in charge of ICRC’s ongoing project of updating its midtwentieth-century Commentaries on the 1949 Geneva Conventions and the Additional Protocols of 1977.

Last September, publication of the Commentary on the First Geneva Convention was marked by a daylong conference here in Athens. Henckaerts keynoted the event (above), and nearly 2 dozen other experts in international humanitarian law took part in public and closed-door discussions (prior posts). Cosponsoring with our Center were the ICRC and the Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law, the 45-year-old review for which Henckaerts once served as an Associate Editor.

The Commentary on the Second Geneva Convention is due for release in early May, and will be launched via an event livestreamed from Geneva on May 4.

Henckaerts came to Georgia Law from Belgium, where he’d completed a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) at Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Thereafter, he moved to Washington, D.C., earning an S.J.D. degree in international law from George Washington University Law School.

As described in a post marking its inaugural meeting last year, the Dean Rusk International Law Center Council is made up of faculty members, alumni/ae, and others who advise and support the work of the Center.

Global migration topic of 2-day AILA event our alumna’s helping organize

On behalf of a member of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Council, we’re pleased to announce an upcoming event:

The American Immigration Lawyers Association Global Migration Section  will host a conference entitled “Global Immigration in a Protectionist World” June 20-21, 2017, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Panel topics include: the future of immigration law from a global perspective, running a global practice, consular processing, European Union immigration directives in light of Brexit, cybersecurity, and global mobility options for LGBT clients.

Alumna and Council member Anita E. J. Ninan (above), who is Of Counsel at Arnall Golden Gregory LLP in Atlanta and Advocate, Bar Council of Delhi, India, serves on the conference committee for this group – which, she writes, is

“the global outbound immigration section of AILA and includes foreign attorneys and legal practitioners as its members.”

Registration (early bird rates end May 10) and further details here.

Georgia Law alum co-authors commentary on US surveillance law

Gary Ashcroft, who earned his J.D. degree cum laude from the University of Georgia School of Law just last year, has co-authored “Why Electronic Surveillance Reform is Necessary,” a commentary at Lawfare, a leading national security blog.

The post, which is drawn from a longer version here, argues for reform of the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) Amendments Act of 2008, commonly known as Section 702, and relied upon by the country’s intelligence community, or “IC.” It concludes:

“Section 702 is a valuable intelligence tool that exhibits some significant deficiencies in its protections for U.S. persons in a law enforcement context and for U.S. competitive interests abroad. Policymakers should craft reforms that guard against the misuse of Section 702 by law enforcement and redefine the relationship between the IC and tech companies. As they do so, policymakers can ensure that Section 702 continues to fulfill its vital national security functions while also respecting the civil liberties and corporate interests of U.S. persons and companies. “

Ashcroft (above left) is a Fellow for National Security at Third Way, a centrist thinktank in Washington, D.C. While a law student, he served as Research Assistant to Professor Harlan G. Cohen, served as Director of Legislative Research for State Rep. Spencer Frye, interned at the ACLU of Georgia, and was a Google Policy Fellow, working on cyber issues, at D.C.’s American Enterprise Institute. Ashcroft wrote the Lawfare commentary with Mieke Eoyang, Vice President for Third Way’s National Security Program.