Alumni news in brief

03 November 2011

Matthew Conaglen

(LLB(Hons) 1996) currently at Cambridge, has accepted an appointment to a chair at the University of Sydney Law School, which he will take up in September 2012.

Silva Hinek

(LLB(Hons) 2001), having clerked at the Auckland High Court (2001-2003), went on to gain an LLM from Leiden University in The Netherlands (2004-2005), specialising in international criminal law. Having graduated from Leiden cum laude, she stayed in The Netherlands and started working for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague. Silva first started at the ICTY as an intern in Chambers, providing legal assistance to the Judges sitting on the Slobodan Milošević case. Soon after, she was employed by the ICTY and, following Milošević’s death in 2006, proceeded to work, also in Chambers, on the Milutinović et al case, in which six high level political, military, and police figures were prosecuted for the multitude of crimes that took place in Kosovo in 1999. Silva is now a legal officer, again in Chambers, helping to manage and co-ordinate the case of Radovan Karadžić, who is the former president of the Republika Srpska in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and thus the highest ranking Bosnian Serb politician currently on trial at the ICTY. The indictment against Karadžić alleges that he committed a large number of crimes on the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995, and includes, inter alia, charges of genocide, extermination, persecution, hostage-taking of United Nations personnel, terror, deportation, and unlawful attacks on civilian population.

Lynn Lai

(BCom/LLB(Hons) 2011) embarked on the trip of a lifetime to New York in October where she commenced an internship with the New Zealand Permanent Mission to the UN. Her role is to assist the Permanent Mission staff during the 66th Session of the General Assembly.

Natasha Lewis

(BA/LLB(Hons) 2010) writes: “I arrived in New York in July 2010 for an internship at New Zealand’s Permanent Mission to the UN with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT). I arrived three weeks after handing in my dissertation and was lucky enough to find my dream first job a few months later.

During my nearly four months at MFAT, I helped write a speech for New Zealand’s Permanent Representative, HE Jim Mclay, on New Zealand’s bid for the Security Council in 2014-2015, assisted with organising the Third Session of the Conference of States Parties to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), and reported on a diverse range of issues including the declaration of independence by Kosovo, sexual violence in armed conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the ongoing situation in the Middle East.

In November 2010 I began working as a Program Consultant at UN Women, the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, the newest UN agency which is a living symbol of both UN reform in action and a commitment to empowering the world’s women and girls. I work in a Global Migration team, undertaking human rights research and writing - this past year I have focused mainly on migrant women employed as domestic workers around the world. One of the highlights of my job has been interviewing women who are employed as maids, nannies and caregivers in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, and the United States. I also really enjoy co-organising events for intergovernmental processes like the Commission on the Status of Women, the Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries, and the Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD).”

Ezekiel Simperingham

(BA/LLB (Hons) 2003) graduated with an LLM from NYU School of Law in 2007 and since that time has worked for a number of human rights organisations as a legal adviser, including the International Center for Transitional Justice in New York and the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Sri Lanka. Ezekiel is currently working as a legal advisor for Displacement Solutions, an international human rights NGO that provides solutions to displacement crises throughout the world; assisting governments, intergovernmental bodies and displaced people to prevent or resolve displacement, with a focus on housing, land and property rights. Ezekiel’s primary focus is on climate displacement in Bangladesh, where he is working with a number of civil society organisations as well as government and UN officials to actively find human rights solutions for people who have lost their homes and lands due to the effects of climate change. Ezekiel is also working as a legal consultant for the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) on its Asia-Pacific programme based in Bangkok. Ezekiel’s work for the ICJ is focused on training Government officials across the justice sector in Thailand on human rights and rule of law principles and standards. Ezekiel is currently based in Tunisia with his fiancée who is working for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

Namita Singh

writes: “Next year, I will be interning at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), in The Hague. I will be working on the Karadzic case. A founding member of the Serbian Democratic Party, Karadzic has been indicted for genocide and crimes against humanity.”

Matthew Windsor

(BA/LLB(Hons) 2008) graduated from Columbia Law School’s LLM program as a James Kent Scholar, where he focused on issues of government accountability at domestic and international law. He was awarded the Cleary Memorial Prize, an AMP National Scholarship, a FWW Rhodes Memorial Scholarship, a Spencer Mason Traveling Scholarship and Columbia’s Joseph V Heffernan Fellowship to support his studies. While at Columbia, Matthew interned for the vice-chair of the UN Committee Against Torture and won the Columbia Institute for the Study of Human Rights graduate essay contest, for his work on historic institutional abuse and transitional justice in New Zealand. Previously, Matthew clerked for the Hon Justice Hammond at the Court of Appeal of New Zealand, worked as a junior barrister at Shortland Chambers and undertook a Fellowship at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics. In September 2011, he joined the Open Society Justice Initiative in New York City as a litigation fellow through Columbia’s Leebron Human Rights Fellowship, undertaking strategic human rights litigation in national, regional and international courts and tribunals.