Robert L. Bernstein International Human Rights Fellows
The 2013-2014 Fellows
Mytili Bala, a 2009 Yale Law School graduate, will spend her fellowship year with the Center for Justice and Accountability (CJA) in San Francisco. Mytili will engage in fact-gathering efforts for CJA’s active investigations in order to secure and preserve admissible evidence for potential civil litigation in the United States and for international accountability efforts. Mytili will also assist CJA with motion practice and related appeals for its pending cases under the Alien Tort Statute and Torture Victim Protection Act.
Mytili earned a B.A. in Economics with Honors from the University of Chicago in 2005. At the Law School, she participated in the Community Lawyering Clinic and the Temporary Restraining Order Project and was a Senior Editor of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal. As a Kirby Simon Summer Human Rights Fellow at People’s Watch, an NGO in Madurai, India, Mytili drafted incident reports of police torture and helped organize people’s tribunals in connection with the National Project on Preventing Torture in India. Following law school, Mytili worked as a litigation associate at Kirkland & Ellis LLP and Irell & Manella LLP.
Carrick Flynn graduated from the Law School in 2011. He will be spending the 2013-2014 fellowship year at the Human Rights Law Network in New Delhi, India. As part of the reproductive rights unit, he will work on a variety of projects related to coercive sterilization, maternal mortality, child marriage, sexual education, the right to food, and access to family planning and contraception. He will also lead a project focusing on the abuses of India’s rapidly growing clinical-testing industry. His project will involve managing two current court cases; compiling and documenting additional cases around the country in preparation for further litigation; creating a sustainable coalition of organizations and activists dedicated to the issue; drafting a publication on the applicable laws, both international and domestic; and forming and distributing recommendations on how to bring India into compliance with relevant international human rights standards on human testing and clinical trials.
While at the Law School, Carrick served as a submissions editor for the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal and as an editor for the Yale Journal of International Law. He also advised asylum seekers with the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project. He spent his summers working abroad through Kirby Simon Human Rights Fellowships. He spent his first summer with The Carter Center in Liberia, where he designed human rights training materials for Liberian magistrates and wrote a report making recommendations on how to integrate the customary and formal court systems of the country. His second summer, he worked at The Asia Foundation in Timor-Leste on access to justice. After graduation, Carrick returned to Timor-Leste, where he volunteered for the development NGO Progressio before working as a legal consultant at the Asia Foundation. He earned a B.A. summa cum laude from the University of Oregon with a double major in Economics and International Studies, with an emphasis on the economic development of sub-Saharan Africa.
Ignacio Mujica will receive his LL.M. degree from the Law School in May 2013. During his LL.M. studies, he has been a Fulbright Scholar. Ignacio will spend his fellowship year working in the Crimes Against Humanity Program of Human Rights First. His work will focus, first, on establishing the identities of the networks of states, corporations, and individuals that provide material support to groups that perpetrate mass atrocities and, second, on the domestic and international actions that can be taken to disrupt those networks.
Ignacio’s studies at Yale have focused on international human rights law, international humanitarian law and international criminal law. A native Chilean, he holds an LL.B degree from the University of Chile. Before coming to Yale, he worked both in academic research and in litigation on human rights in Chile, with a particular emphasis on transitional justice and criminal law.
The 2012-2013 Fellows
Efrén C. Olivares , a 2008 Yale Law School graduate, will spend his fellowship year at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Washington, D.C. His work will focus on the rights of indigenous peoples in the context of large infrastructure projects affecting their territories. As a fellow of a staff attorney at the Commission, he will work primarily on cases and petitions for precautionary measures filed at the Commission relating to indigenous peoples’ rights. As part of an initiative currently being developed within the Commission, he will also help research, design, and draft a set of guidelines and recommended practices for situations where large development projects, such as dams or highways, threaten indigenous peoples’ lands and livelihoods. The goals of his project are to help protect the rights of some of the most vulnerable minority groups in the Americas, and to ensure that appropriate safeguards are in place when they confront these large-scale development projects.
Efrén earned a B.A. in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Pennsylvania in 2005, where he graduated summa cum laude. At Yale, he was a Student Director of the Orville H. Schell, Jr. Center for International Human Rights and an Articles Editor of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal. As a member of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, he worked on a number of projects involving the Inter-American Commission and Court of Human Rights. Efrén was also a member of the Criminal Defense Clinic, and worked as a research assistant for Michael Sheehan in a case involving the criminal defense of a foreign national. Since graduation, he has worked as an associate in the international arbitration group of Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. in Houston, Texas, where he has handled cases under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. He is also a Vice-Chair of the Latin American and Caribbean Committee of the ABA’s Section of International Law.
Katie Reisner , a 2011 graduate of Yale Law School, will work with the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) in New York, where she will develop a scalable legal model to increase enforcement of service and benefit provisions provided to newly resettled refugees. She will conduct field surveys, consult with IRAP’s pro bono attorney network, leverage IRAP’s institutional experience, and directly represent newly resettled refugees in benefit arbitration disputes. Using this experience, she will develop training materials for pro bono attorneys and law students and commence trainings. She will also address the common failures of the benefits distribution system in the United States, prototypical cases, the most urgent points of legal intervention, the impact of post-traumatic stress disorder and mental health issues on refugees’ ability to access resettlement benefits, and legal ethics principles to engage with legal counsel within benefits-providing NGOs.
Katie is currently a law clerk for the Honorable Michael Daly Hawkins of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. At Yale, Katie worked on IRAP’s policy team and represented Iraqis claiming compensation due to them under the Defense Base Act. She also served as a Student Director of the Landlord-Tenant Clinic, a Projects Editor of the Yale Law Journal, a Senior Editor of the Yale Journal of International Law, a Panel Coordinator for the Rebellious Lawyering Conference, a Research Assistant to Professor Peter Schuck, and the Immigration Committee Chair for the American Constitution Society. Katie also worked as a Kirby Simon Fellow at the Alternative Law Forum, a human rights organization in Bangalore, India, and as a Summer Associate at the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom where she assisted with affirmative asylum applications.
Katie earned an A.B., magna cum laude from Brown University in 2007, where she concentrated in International Relations and was editor-in-chief of the Brown Journal of World Affairs. In 2009 she was awarded an MSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Her thesis, granted high Distinction, addressed NATO’s role in preventing ethnic conflict in post-Cold War Romania.
Rupali Sharma, a member of the J.D. class of 2012, will spend her fellowship year at the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), where she will use international, regional, and domestic law to help expand access to reproductive healthcare in Central and Eastern Europe. She will explore opportunities for litigation at the national and regional level; advocate within the European Union and Council of Europe for increased access to reliable contraception and comprehensive data on unintended pregnancy; provide regional policymakers with analyses of international and comparative legal standards regarding safe abortion; and collaborate with partners in Hungary, Poland, Russia, and Slovakia to identify anti-choice trends and develop defensive strategies. Following her fellowship, Rupali will be clerking for Judge Matthew F. Kennelly of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
Prior to law school, Rupali provided direct services to immigrant domestic violence survivors and led an emergency contraception campaign at the National Institute for Reproductive Health. At Yale Law School, she served as a student director of the Immigration Legal Services clinic, was a Managing Editor of the Yale Journal of Law and Feminism, interned with Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s Public Policy Litigation and Law program, was selected as a Ms. JD fellow, and was a member of the Lowenstein International Human Rights clinic, through which she worked with CRR. Rupali spent her first law school summer working with the Honorable Mr. Justice Dalveer Bhandari of the Supreme Court of India and her second summer at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. She graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Northwestern University, with a double-major in Political Science and Gender Studies, and a minor in Philosophy.
The 2011-2012 Fellows
Erin Evers graduated from the Law School in 2011. This year she is working with the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) in Egypt. Her project combines direct legal advocacy, legal research and fact-finding: She provides direct assistance to asylum-seekers in Egypt, Syria, and Jordan, and to individuals at risk in Iraq, in order to help them gain access to legal, medical and psychological services. She works with UNHCR, IOM, and several Egyptian organizations to identify vulnerable individuals, contact them, and assist them with their legal, health and security problems. In addition, she continues to undertake research in a number of areas related to a broad range of refugee issues, to assist IRAP’s ongoing campaigns for direct access categories for especially vulnerable individuals. So far she has conducted field research on UNHCR methods for making best interests determinations for unaccompanied minors and the standards using for making custody determinations for women at risk; and has helped research and compile a “Refugee Assistance Handbook” for use by practitioners, teachers and students.
Erin has worked at numerous human rights organizations throughout the Middle East, including the Human Rights Foundation of Turkey in Izmir and Diyarbakir, the Cairo office of Human Rights Watch, the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims (Cairo), and the Nadim Center for Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence (Cairo). She took a leave of absence between her second and third years of law school and moved to Cairo for three years. In Egypt, she studied Arabic and worked for an organization that provides legal and psychiatric services to torture victims, interviewing clients, translating interviews for other international organizations, and conducting research on Egypt’s draconian emergency laws and on accountability for state-sponsored torture. While at Yale, Erin focused on international human rights law and began working on refugee law with IRAP in her third year. She was a member of the Allard K. Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic. She worked as a research assistant for Professor James Silk, was an editor for the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, and completed substantial research projects comparing the use of judicial activism as a tool to effect democratization and political change in Egypt and Pakistan and on the effects of U.S. foreign assistance in Egypt. She earned a B.A. from New York University and was a Center for Arabic Studies Abroad Fellow in Cairo (2009-2010).
Lauren Oleykowski, graduated from the law school in 2011, and spent her fellowship year with Project Concern International (PCI), working on integrated community-based child protection in Port au Prince, Haiti. Lauren worked on a UNICEF-funded child protection project, strengthening the connection between PCI’s community-based programming in child protection and international legal standards related to the prevention of exploitation, abuse, and neglect of vulnerable children. While working as a member of the PCI team to increase protection outcomes in PCI’s program communities, she created trainings for school administrators and teachers on child protection protocols to prevent, identify, and respond to cases of child abuse, neglect or exploitation. Working with UNICEF, she educated school officials and teachers on newly created government hotlines for reporting child abuse cases, including a hotline to refer restavek cases, which is a widespread form of domestic child labor in Haiti. Lauren also designed programs to educate communities in Port au Prince on children’s rights, and oversaw a team of 15 community outreach educators who implemented educational and awareness raising activities in several neighborhoods of Port au Prince.
Prior to law school, Lauren worked in West Africa for nearly three years as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Guinea and as Savings and Literacy Coordinator for the American Refugee Committee in Sierra Leone. Her work in Guinea and Sierra Leone centered on small-enterprise development, microfinance, and community health education. Lauren is also co-founder of a civic-engagement and activism education non-profit, Global PACT, and has trained university students in activism education in Mongolia, Croatia, South Africa, and the United States. At the Law School, Lauren focused her studies on international law, human rights, and development. She served as a student director of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic; within the clinic, she worked on projects involving human trafficking, economic and social rights, and global food security. Lauren earned a B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Rutgers University. She is currently a legal fellow at the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative.
Stephen Poellot, a member of the J.D. Class of 2011, spent his fellowship year working at the Resettlement Legal Aid Project in Cairo, Egypt. He provided direct legal assistance to refugees in need of resettlement, focusing on the U.S. government’s overseas adjudications of refugee claims. He is spending an extension of his Bernstein fellowship at the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP), where he will coordinate legal representation for vulnerable refugees in the Middle East. At IRAP, he will also participate in advocacy to improve the U.S. process to provide visas to Iraqis and Afghans who worked with the U.S. government and who are under threat because of their work.
At Yale Law School, Stephen was a founding director of IRAP and a member of the National Litigation Project of the Allard K. Lowenstein Clinic and the Worker & Immigrant Rights & Advocacy Clinic. Stephen served as an articles editor of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, a senior editor of the Yale Law Journal, and a research assistant to Professor Michael Wishnie. He has worked at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP in New York and Dubai, and at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva.
Stephen earned a B.A. in Anthropology from Columbia College. Prior to entering law school, Stephen investigated allegations of police misconduct at the New York City Civilian Complaint Review Board and worked for Dr. Barbara Harrell Bond at the Center for Migration and Refugee Studies at the American University in Cairo.
Chelsea Purvis, a member of the J.D. class of 2011, is spending her second Bernstein Fellowship year (2012-13) at Minority Rights Group International in London. As part of the Legal Cases team, she engages in litigation and advocacy on the rights of minorities and indigenous people. She has written a report based on original field research in Belize on indigenous communities’ land rights, and she has conducted field research in rural Kenya for a case before the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
Chelsea spent her first fellowship year (2011-12) at INTERIGHTS, the International Centre for the Legal Protection of Human Rights, in London. There she supported litigation and capacity development on the rights of women, sexual minorities, and people with disabilities. Her work included helping to conduct a human rights workshop in Sierra Leone and drafting a report on European human trafficking.
Chelsea earned her B.A. from Yale and attended Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, earning a master’s degree in Economic and Social History. While at Yale Law School, Chelsea served as Student Director of the Allard K. Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, the Immigration Legal Services Clinic, the Temporary Restraining Order Project, and the Orville H. Schell, Jr. Center for International Human Rights. Chelsea was awarded the law school’s Khosla Memorial Fund for Human Dignity Prize in 2011. Chelsea has worked at the International Rescue Committee, the International Association of Women Judges, the Centre for Applied Legal Studies in Johannesburg, and Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP. Her writing on human rights and international law has been published in several law journals. She contributes to blogs and online magazines on international law. She was recently recognized as a “new voice” in international law by the American Society of International Law.
The 2010-2011 Fellows
Itamar Mann is working in collaboration with Human Rights Watch and the Open Society Institute (OSI) on asylum seekers’ rights. He is writing a report on the obligations that apply to the European border control agency (Frontex) when apprehending migrants. He is also work on litigation basded on this report with the Open Society Justice Initiative.
Itamar is also a J.S.D. candidate at Yale Law School. His dissertation topic stems directly out of the work he is currently doing wih HRW and OSI: he will be looking at the effects of increasingly transnational migration management on the rights of refugees and asylum seekers.
As a lawyer in Israel, Itamar worked on human rights issues related to the ongoing occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, as well as on refugee rights issues. With two partners, Itamar founded a firm in Tel Aviv dedicated exclusively to work in these areas. Since coming to Yale, he has continued to be involved in such litigation from afar and has published articles on related issues.
Itamar graduated in 2008 with an LLB in law from the faculty of law and from the interdisciplinary program for excellence at Tel Aviv University.
Thomas Stutsman, a member of the J.D. Class of 2010, is currently a sociology Ph.D. student at the University of Wisconsin. He spent his fellowship year at the Vera Institute of Justice, where he worked with Vera’s Chinese partners to expand Chinese scholars’ and practitioners’ capacity to use empirical methods to test justice reforms that advance human rights and the rule of law.
While at Yale Law School, Thomas served as a research assistant for John Donohue, Nancy Gertner, and Kate Stith. He also served as a research assistant and a student fellow at the Yale China Law Center, and drafted a report on juvenile justice in China as a participant in the Lowenstein Human Rights Project. Thomas dedicated his first law school summer to working on criminal procedure reform at the Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association in Tbilisi, Georgia, and his second summer to studying the relationship between criminal punishment and political legitimacy in non-democratic countries. During his third year of law school, he served as a submissions editor for the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal. Thomas holds a B.A. from Minnesota State University and an LL.M. from Sichuan University Law School.
The 2009-2010 Bernstein Fellows
Tendayi Achiume spent her Bernstein Fellowship year working with Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) in its Johannesburg Refugee and Migrant Rights Project. In addition to providing direct legal services to refugees and migrants from across the continent, she was also involved in various advocacy projects particularly on issues relating to Zimbabwean refugees and migrants in South Africa. These projects included developing and proposing responses to the vast numbers of unaccompanied minor Zimbabwean children seeking refuge in South Africa, and to the high levels of sexual and gender-based violence perpetrated against refugees and migrants as they cross the border between Zimbabwe and South Africa. Tendayi also litigated judicial review proceedings of unlawful administrative decisions affecting refugees. During her time in South Africa she taught a human rights course in the International Human Rights Exchange program administered jointly by Bard College and Witwatersrand University.
Tendayi is currently the Binder Clinical Teaching Fellow at UCLA Law School where she has co-taught in the International Justice Clinic, and the Asylum Clinic, and will be teaching an international human rights clinic. Her current academic research focuses on the use of the international human rights framework in refugee protection; and on African participation in the emerging international justice framework.
Tendayi graduated from the Yale Law School in 2008. At the Law School she pursued her dual interests in human rights and development. She attained a Graduate Certificate in Development Studies, and was a member of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic for two of her three years in law school. Tendayi was Managing Editor of Submissions for the Yale Journal of International Law and was awarded the Howard M. Holtzmann Fellowship in International Arbitration and Dispute Resolution for research on the role of transnational public policy in international arbitration. As a Kirby Simon summer fellow, she worked at Human Rights Watch with the Hissène Habré prosecution team and then worked for a Senegalese human rights NGO.
After law school, Tendayi was a Fox International Fellow conducting refugee rights law research through the University of Cape Town. She also clerked for Deputy Chief Justice Moseneke and Justice Mokgoro on the Constitutional Court of South Africa. Following her Bernstein fellowship she was a litigation associate at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP in New York.
Tendayi graduated from Yale College in 2005 with a B.A. in Ethics, Politics and Economics.
Stratos Pahis graduated from the Law School in 2009 and spent his fellowship year at the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) in Geneva, Switzerland, researching and writing a report on international investment law and human rights. The Report explores potential conflicts between these two sets of laws and presents an interpretive methodology for diffusing them. It also presents specific recommendations for increasing the transparency of international investment arbitrations. The report, published in 2011, was guided by an advisory committee of investment and human rights experts and is available online.
At the Law School, Stratos concentrated his studies in private and public international law. He was a member of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic and an Articles Editor for the Yale Journal of International Law. Stratos worked for the Inter-American Development Bank during his first summer and for Davis Polk during his second. He is deeply interested in human rights, development, and corruption; a note that he wrote on judicial bribery was published in the Yale Law Journal. Stratos is from Vernon, Connecticut and received an A.B. from Dartmouth College in Economics. He received an M.A. in International Cooperation for Development from the Universidad Complutense in Madrid, Spain. Stratos is currently a litigation associate at Davis Polk in New York.
Katherine Wiltenburg Todrys spent her fellowship year working with Human Rights Watch’s Health and Human Rights program, researching health conditions and human rights violations in Zambian prisons. She wrote a comprehensive report based on interviews with prisoners, prison officers, and government officials at six prisons—detailing inadequate general conditions, lack of medical care (particularly HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis testing and treatment), inappropriate disciplinary measures, and criminal justice system failures compounding detainees’ poor health—which was published by Human Rights Watch and two partner organizations. After completing her fellowship year, Katherine remained at Human Rights Watch as a researcher, going on to document health conditions and hard labor in Ugandan prisons and to research police abuses against sex workers in New York City. She is currently writing a book.
After graduating from the law school, Kate worked with the Millennium Villages Project at Columbia University on an HIV and reproductive health patients’ rights project sponsored by the Yale Student Initiative for the Public Interest; she subsequently worked as a consultant with Human Rights Watch researching access to treatment for HIV-positive migrants. While in law school, she participated in the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, served as a research assistant for Professor Oona Hathaway, and was Notes Development Editor for the Yale Law Journal. She spent her summers interning in the civil division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York and the U.S. Law & Security program at Human Rights First. Prior to law school, Kate worked at the Juvenile Rights Division of the Legal Aid Society in the Bronx, New York. Kate received an A.B. from Harvard University in 2003.
The 2008-2009 Fellows
Kristina Scurry Baehr spent her fellowship year working with the Carter Center to launch a Gender Crimes Prosecution Unit in Liberia. The Liberian Ministry of Justice had invited the Carter Center to help develop a specialized unit to prosecute domestic violence and sex offense cases. With frequent travel to Liberia, Kristina wrote a comprehensive handbook for prosecutors, coordinated a training program on sexual assault and abuse for law enforcement, and developed policies and protocols for the new Unit. She worked closely with the Chief Prosecutor to establish a case management system and coordinated with police and health professionals to develop an interdisciplinary, efficient and rapid response team.
Kristina graduated in 2004 from Princeton University. While at Princeton, she spent a summer teaching in Namibia, studied abroad at the University of Cape Town, and wrote her senior thesis on women living with HIV/AIDS in a South African township. After college, she was hired by the Centers for Disease Control to work in Uganda for TASO, the largest African AIDS organization. After months in the field working directly with people living with HIV/AIDS on small income-generation projects, she developed TASO’s national strategy for economic empowerment.
In law school, Kristina primarily studied and practiced in the areas of domestic violence law and women’s rights issues. She directed the Temporary Restraining Order Project, served as activism chair of Yale Law Women, and co-founded and directed the new LSO Domestic Violence Clinic. Her 2L summer, she worked for the Domestic Violence and Sex Offense Unit at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington, DC. She also published a comment on sentencing sex offenders in South Africa in the Yale Journal of Law and Feminism.
After her fellowship with the Carter Center, Kristina served as a law clerk for Judge Nancy Gertner in the U.S. District Court of Massachusetts in her final year on the bench. Kristina and her family moved to Austin, Texas, where her husband Evan launched a startup called Outbox and Kristina is practicing at a trial litigation boutique, McKool Smith. They welcomed their second child, Madeleine McGinley Baehr on October 2, 2012.
Alisha Bjerregaard spent her fellowship year working with the Center for Reproductive Rights in their Africa Program, focused on reproductive health issues in Kenya. In addition to working with the Center’s Kenyan partner organizations to conduct advocacy and provide technical legal assistance around legislative and constitutional reform processes in Kenya, Alisha researched and wrote a human rights fact-finding report that looked at the impact of Kenya’s restrictive abortion law on women, healthcare providers and the healthcare system. The report, In Harm’s Way: The Impact of Kenya’s Restrictive Abortion Law, was launched in March 2010 at the Commission on the Status of Women. Alisha relocated to Nairobi, Kenya in early 2011 and continues to work at the Center for Reproductive Rights, focusing on devising long-term advocacy strategies around the report’s findings in addition to working on other reproductive rights projects in Kenya as well as in Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda.
At the Law School, Alisha focused on international human rights and women's rights law and advocacy. She served as a student director of the Schell Center for International Human Rights, an associate world fellow for Yale's World Fellows Program, and a student director of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic. Alisha spent her first law school summer working with Global Rights in Mongolia on a women's rights project and her second summer in New York with the Global Justice Center, an international human rights organization focused on women's political and legal empowerment. Prior to law school, Alisha gained experience working with a variety of international human rights organizations, including Human Rights Watch, the World Health Organization, Tostan, a human rights organization in Senegal, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Jordan. Alisha graduated from Brown University in 2002 with a B.A. in International Relations.
Matiangai Sirleaf is currently a Sharswood Fellow in International Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. The Sharswood fellowship is an academic fellowship for junior scholars committed to entering a career in legal academia. Matiangai’s research focuses primarily on international human rights law, transitional justice, public international law, criminal law and procedure, international criminal law, civil procedure and comparative constitutional law. She is currently teaching a seminar on transitional justice. Prior to this she worked in Cohen Milstein’s International Human Rights Practice Group. She served as counsel for the plaintiffs in numerous leading-edge international human rights cases, representing victims of human trafficking and forced labor, torture, enforced disappearance, extrajudicial killing, and arbitrary detention. Before joining Cohen Milstein, Matiangai taught a course on civic engagement with human rights for the International Human Rights Exchange Program at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa. Prior to this, she clerked at the Constitutional Court of South Africa for Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo. Her duties included extensive foreign and international law research as well as assisting with the reform of the South African judiciary and the restructuring of the Office of the Chief Justice.
Prior to this, Matiangai spent her Bernstein Fellowship year working with the International Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) in Cape Town, South Africa. Her project involved working on a comparative study of transitional justice experiences in West Africa, focusing on truth telling, prosecutions, and reparations. She interviewed over one hundred human rights victims, relevant actors from truth commissions, courts, government agencies, and civil society groups amongst others in Sierra Leone, Ghana, and Liberia.
Matiangai received her J.D. from Yale Law School in 2008. At the Law School, she served as a student director of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, Managing Editor for the Yale Journal of International Law, and student director of the Schell Center for International Human Rights. Matiangai graduated from New York University with a B.A. in Political Science. In 2004, she received a Fulbright Fellowship to Ghana, where she conducted research on transitional justice issues and attained her Masters in International Affairs from the University of Ghana Legon Centre for International Affairs.
The 2007-2008 Fellows
Nick Robinson is a Senior Fellow at the Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi where he works on reforms in the Indian legal system and the implementation of social welfare programs in India. In 2010-11 he was an Assistant Professor at Jindal Global Law School and in 2009-2010 he was a Ruebhausen South Asia Teaching and Research Fellow, during which time he was visiting faculty at the law department at Lahore University of Management Sciences and the National Law School in Bangalore.
Nick graduated from the University of Chicago with a B.A. in Political Science and Law, Letters, and Society in 2002. After college, he worked with EarthRights International in Thailand on environmental and human rights issues in Burma. He received his J.D. from the Law School in 2006. After graduation, he was a Yale Fox Fellow at Jawaharlal Nehru University in Delhi, during which time he clerked for Chief Justice Sabharwal of the Indian Supreme Court. In 2007-2008 Nick was a Bernstein Fellow at Human Rights Law Network (HRLN) in New Delhi where he worked on litigation involving water and health. He still actively partners with HRLN.
Katherine Southwick is a Visiting Fellow at the Center for Asian Legal Studies in the National University of Singapore Faculty of Law. Based in Singapore, she also consults for international organizations on legal reform programs in Asia. From 2011-2012, she served as the Rule of Law Advisor in the Manila, Philippines office of the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI), where she helped to design, implement, and evaluate programs throughout Southeast Asia and the Pacific relating to judicial reform, alternative dispute resolution, anti-trafficking in persons, and regional human rights systems."
Katherine spent her fellowship year working with Refugees International (RI), a humanitarian advocacy organization, where she focused on statelessness. She presented at the United Nations and published several articles and reports, including Nationality Rights for All: A Progress Report and Global Survey on Statelessness (2009). Her chapter on the Urdu-speakers of Bangladesh appears in the edited volume, Statelessness and Citizenship: A Comparative Study on the Benefits of Nationality (2011). She continues to serve as an expert witness in asylum cases involving persons of Ethiopian-Eritrean origin.
Katherine grew up in Africa and obtained a B.A. in History from Yale College in 2000. She spent over a year in New Delhi, India working for a local human rights organization. At Yale Law School, she was Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal (YHRDLJ), Student Director of the Schell Center, and Associate Fellow of the Yale World Fellows Program. She spent one summer at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia assisting with the Milosevic trial and another summer in the Office of the Legal Advisor at the U.S. Department of State. Following graduation in 2005, she worked in the international arbitration group at White & Case LLP, conducted research for the Refugee Law Project in Uganda, and clerked for the late Judge Charles P. Sifton in the Eastern District of New York. Her human rights commentary has appeared in the YHRDLJ, Yale Global, Forced Migration Review, Washington Post, International Herald Tribune, and Voice of America.
The 2006-2007 Fellows
Etelle Higonnet is now based in London, working with Amnesty International as West Africa Researcher. Prior to this, she served in Iraq as Analysis Director with the Iraq History Project, a large-scale human rights documentation initiative that has gathered close to 10,000 testimonies from victims of rights violations in every governorate of Iraq, both before and after 2003.
Before moving to Iraq, Etelle served as a consultant to UNICEF in New York. From 2006 to 2007, Etelle spent her fellowship year with Human Rights Watch in and around the Ivory Coast documenting sexual violence in the current civil war. Etelle investigated patterns of sexual violence experienced by women across Côte d'Ivoire, including rebel and government-held territories, as well as throughout Liberia, Mali, and Burkina Faso. Her research was published in several reports and smaller pieces, most notably My Heart is Cut”: Sexual Violence by Rebels and Pro-Government Forces in Côte d'Ivoire. Etelle organized advocacy campaigns around her findings in cooperation with local and international partners, focusing on pushing for accountability mechanisms. She also directed a documentary film on sexual violence in Cote d'Ivoire, which is being produced by Capa TV and will be released in 2010 with French, Dutch, Belgian, Canadian, German, Japanese, Arabic television and in a number of film festivals.
Etelle graduated from Yale University in 2000 and Yale Law School in 2005. Following her graduation from the Law School, she became the Senior Research Fellow and General Project Coordinator at the International Human Rights Law Institute. She has four publications on transitional justice issues. While at the Law School, she worked on the Yale Journal of International Law and the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, organized numerous talks on international human rights issues, and represented individuals seeking asylum in the United States in the Immigration Clinic. During law school, Etelle was also a consultant for the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center, drafting a strategic plan for a documentation system based on the work of the Yale-affiliated Documentation Center of Cambodia. She consulted for the Royal Cambodian Government Task Force for the Extraordinary Chambers, which has spearheaded the government’s creation of a war crimes tribunal for the Khmer Rouge, and interned at the Special Court for Sierra Leone. Etelle worked as a summer associate in the New York and Paris offices of Sullivan & Cromwell.
Prior to law school, Etelle was the Africa Associate at Human Rights Watch and worked for a human rights NGO in Senegal, running the organization’s ten field offices.
Jeremy Robbins is currently the Director of the Partnership for a New American Economy, the bipartisan coalition of more than 500 CEOs and mayors making the economic case for immigration reform, and is also a Policy Advisor & Special Counsel in the Office of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Prior to joining city government, Jeremy was a judicial law clerk to the Honorable Robert Sack of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and a litigation associate at WilmerHale in Boston where, along with working on general corporate litigation matters, he was part of the firm’s team representing six Bosnian men detained at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, the European Court of Human Rights, and federal courts in Washington, D.C., and Massachusetts. Jeremy received his B.A. in Political Science from Brown University in 2002 and is a 2006 graduate of the Law School.
Jeremy spent his fellowship year in Argentina working with the Center for Legal and Social Studies (El Centro de Estudios Legales y Sociales) and the Association for Civil Rights (Asociacion por los Derechos Civiles) to develop and implement projects on behalf of people detained in Argentine prisons. Projects included: developing and securing funding for project to strengthen criminal defense services for inmates; photographically documenting human rights abuses in Argentine prisons for two published human rights reports; and partnering with Argentine publishers and pharmaceutical/hygienic-product companies to provide children’s books and toiletries in the prisons in which children under four live with their incarcerated parents. Jeremy also published an article on social change litigation in the Argentine political science journal Nueva Doctrina Penal.
The 2005-2006 Fellows
Sari Bashi spent her fellowship year in Israel, establishing Gisha: Legal Center for Freedom of Movement, which offers legal assistance to Palestinians who face restrictions on their freedom to travel within and outside the Occupied Territories. Gisha is a new Israeli NGO whose founding was made possible, in part, by the Bernstein Fellowship. Sari continues to serve as Gisha’s director, now directing a staff of nine, and is working to help individuals gain access to fundamental necessities such as jobs, schools, medical services, and family unity, by petitioning the Israeli military bureaucracy and Israel’s Supreme Court, using international and Israeli law. Gisha also produces reports on the regime of travel restrictions and uses media and direct lobbying to change policies. Following completion of her Bernstein Fellowship year, Sari received a social innovation fellowship from the Echoing Green Foundation to support her work with Gisha. She also teaches a class in international law at Tel Aviv University.
Sari received her B.A. from Yale (1997) in Ethics, Politics & Economics. After college, she conducted research on ethnic identity among Ethiopian immigrants to Israel as part of a Fulbright Scholarship and worked as a Jerusalem correspondent for the Associated Press. Sari graduated from the Law School in 2003. As a law student, she participated in clinics bringing federal litigation on behalf of prisoners and providing legal services to residents of a public housing project in New Haven. She also co-coordinated a study on the way in which Yale Law School educates female and male students; the study’s results have been published in the Journal of Legal Education and the Yale Journal of Law and Feminism. She spent her summers at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU and at the Association for Civil Rights in Israel. Additional law school activities included work as a Civil Procedure teaching assistant to Professors Owen Fiss and Harold Koh and participating as a finalist in the Morris Tyler Moot Court competition. Licensed in the United States and Israel, Sari clerked for Israel Supreme Court Justice Edmond Levi and has assisted Israel Supreme Court President Aharon Barak in academic projects, including translating his book, Purposive Interpretation in Law, from Hebrew into English.
Avani Mehta Sood is currently completing a Ph.D. in Social Psychology at Princeton University, and will be an Assistant Professor of Law at Berkeley Law School beginning in July 2013. Her dissertation is on motivated cognition in criminal law judgments.
Avani spent her fellowship year working with the International Legal Program of the Center for Reproductive Rights, studying and promoting the use of the Indian Supreme Court’s Public Interest Litigation mechanism (PIL) to address violations of women’s rights. She conducted analyses of applicable Indian constitutional law, case studies of some landmark PIL judgments, and extensive interviews with Supreme Court and high court judges, lawyers, public health and human rights activists, academics, social scientists, journalists, and former PIL petitioners in India about their experiences with the PIL system. Avani used this material to author the report Litigating Reproductive Rights: Using Public Interest Litigation and International Law to Promote Gender Justice in India. She also participated in legal training workshops to familiarize judges and lawyers in India with international law relating to women’s human rights. Following her fellowship, Avani spent another year at the Center, working on a fact-finding project to document violence and rights abuses faced by women seeking reproductive health care services in Kenya, which led to the report Failure to Deliver: Violations of Women’s Human Rights in Kenyan Health Facilities.
Avani received her B.A. in Psychology from Princeton University in 1999, and graduated from the Law School in 2003. At the Law School, she was an Editor of the Yale Law Journal, a board member of Yale Law Women, and a member of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic and the New Haven Legal Assistance Clinic - Family Law Unit. After graduating from the Law School, Avani spent a year working as a litigation associate at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP in New York, followed by a clerkship with Judge Kimba M. Wood in the Southern District of New York.
The 2004-05 Fellows
Liz Brundige spent her fellowship year working with the International Association of Women Judges in Washington, D.C. on projects designed to advance women’s access to justice. Her work involved two month-long trips to Southern and East Africa, where she carried out and refined a human rights judicial education program. She also worked with IAWJ members in Zambia and Tanzania to develop and implement a program addressing the legal and gender dimensions of HIV/AIDS.
Liz received a B.A. in History from Yale College and an M.Phil in Development Studies from Oxford University. During law school, she was a student director of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, an articles editor of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, an editor of the Yale Law Journal, and a Coker teaching fellow. Liz clerked for Judge Kermit V. Lipez of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and Justice Sandile Ngcobo of the Constitutional Court of South Africa. She has also been an Associate Legal Officer at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and the Robert M. Cover – Allard K. Lowenstein Fellow in International Human Rights and a Clinical Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School. She is currently the Executive Director of the Avon Global Center for Women and Justice and a Visiting Assistant Clinical Professor at Cornell Law School, where she teaches the Cornell International Human Rights Clinic.
Brandee Butler spent her fellowship year in Libreville, Gabon, working with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the Child Protection Program. Her work entailed documenting and developing strategies to improve the state protocol for repatriating victims of child trafficking, advocating for bilateral coordination of repatriation/reunification protocols, developing awareness campaigns on child trafficking and exploitation, and promoting juvenile justice reform.
Brandee received her B.A. from Harvard-Radcliffe College in 1999 and graduated from the Law School in 2002. During law school, she received a Schell Center Summer Human Rights Fellowship to work at the Rape Crisis Center in Cape Town, South Africa, where she researched sexual-offenses legislation and revised and edited the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Guide. Through the Law School’s Intensive Semester program, Brandee spent half of her third year at the Center for the Study of AIDS in Pretoria, South Africa, conducting independent research, writing about the legal implications of South Africa’s HIV/AIDS crisis, and working on a human rights-based training manual to empower prospective HIV/AIDS vaccine trial participants.
Following her fellowship year, Brandee joined the Alliance for Children’s Rights, a legal non-profit organization that helps children in the dependency system gain access to education, health care, and other benefits and services in Los Angeles County. Brandee is now a Program Officer for Human Rights and International Justice at the MacArthur Foundation in Chicago.
The 2003-04 Fellows
Tara J. Melish Associate Professor of Law and Director of the Human Rights Center at the University at Buffalo School of Law (SUNY), where she teaches public international law, international human rights law, and comparative social rights jurisprudence. She spent her fellowship year undertaking strategic litigation and advocacy in the area of economic, social and cultural rights at the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL), a non-profit law firm that specializes in litigation before the Inter-American Commission and Court of Human Rights. Following her fellowship, Tara worked at the United Nations as Associate Social Affairs Officer in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs and as United Nations representative of Mental Disability Rights International (MDRI) in the drafting negotiations of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and its Optional Protocol.
Active in litigation and reporting procedures before UN and OAS bodies, Tara continues to serve as legal adviser to CEJIL and MDRI, and consultant to a number of Latin American NGOs. She publishes and lectures widely on human rights issues and has taught at the law schools of Notre Dame, George Washington, Åbo Akademi, Oxford, Georgia, and Virginia, among others. At Yale, she received the Ambrose Gherini Prize and served as Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, Book Reviews Editor of the Yale Journal of International Law, Student Director of the Schell Center, and teaching assistant for an undergraduate human rights course. Tara clerked on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals for the Honorable James R. Browning and has been the recipient of professional fellowships from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Fulbright Foundation.
Brent Wible spent his fellowship year working with the Academy for Educational Development (AED) in Washington, D.C., addressing the issue of sexual abuse and sexual harassment in the schools of Bénin, West Africa. He spent a month in Bénin, where he organized several community workshops and administered a set of questionnaires to gain perspective on the problem. After returning to AED, Brent presented his work at an annual international conference on development and education. He also drafted a report, Making Schools Safe for Girls: Combating Gender-Based Violence in Bénin (2004), which was published by AED. His article exploring strategies to address the problem appeared in the Columbia Human Rights Law Review.
Brent graduated from Haverford College in 1998 with a B.A. in History. After college, he served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Bénin, where he taught English in secondary school. At the Law School, Brent served as a student director of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, and Editor on the Yale Law Journal. He also worked as a research assistant to Professor Amy Chua. During his first law school summer, Brent worked on refugee issues at the International Rescue Committee in New York. He split his second summer between the law firms of Debevoise & Plimpton in New York and Steptoe & Johnson in Washington, D.C. Brent has published law review articles in the Yale Law Journal, Denver Journal of International Law and Policy, William and Mary Bill of Rights Journal, Columbia Human Rights Law Review, and Georgetown Immigration Law Journal. Brent clerked for Judge Allyne R. Ross of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York and Judge Sonia Sotomayor of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He is now an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the criminal division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.
The 2002-03 Fellows
Molly Land is an Associate Professor of Law at New York Law School. Drawing on her human rights expertise and background as an IP litigator, Molly’s scholarship focuses on access to knowledge and the intersection of intellectual property, information law, and human rights. Her recent work
explores the extent to which human rights law can provide a foundation for claims of access to the Internet as well as the opportunities and challenges for using new technologies to achieve human rights objectives.
Molly spent her fellowship year working with Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights, where she led a fact-finding team researching state protection of refugee and immigrant victims of domestic violence in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Prior to joining NYLS, she was a Visiting Lecturer in Law and the Robert M. Cover - Allard K. Lowenstein Fellow in International Human Rights at Yale Law School. While the Cover-Lowenstein Fellow, Molly led fact-finding teams reporting on women’s rights in Zambia, the lack of remedies for human rights violations in Kashmir, and the effect of zero-tolerance policies on the right to education in Connecticut; she also participated in litigation before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and other international tribunals. After graduating from Yale Law School in 2001, Molly clerked for the Honorable Denise Cote, U.S. District Judge, in the Southern District of New York.
Eric A. Friedman recently completed a two-year fellowship at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University, where he helped lead the Joint Action and Learning Initiative on National and Global Responsibilities for Health (JALI). JALI aims to develop, through extensive partnerships, research, consultations, and advocacy, a global health treaty – a Framework Convention on Global Health – that would be grounded in the right to health and aimed at closing gaping national and global health inequities.. Eric is now the Project Leader for JALI at the O’Neill Institute.
Before joining the O’Neill Institute, Eric worked on HIV/AIDS and global health campaigns at Physicians for Human Rights (PHR), beginning with his Bernstein fellowship year. In his last several years at PHR, Eric’s advocacy and policy work focused on the massive shortage of health care workers in sub-Saharan Africa and incorporating the right to health into U.S. and developing country policies. He served on the Board of the Global Health Workforce Alliance, chaired the affiliated Health Workforce Advocacy Initiative, and published several reports and guides on the health workforce and right to health.
Eric graduated from the Law School in June 2002. He was a member of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic from his second semester of law school on. His clinic projects included helping prepare a human rights and HIV/AIDS framework, leading a project to help develop model HIV/AIDS legislation for several countries in East Africa, and conducting preliminary work for a report on human rights and HIV/AIDS in India. Eric received the Khosla Memorial Fund for Human Dignity Prize for his human rights work in law school. He received his undergraduate degree from Yale, graduating in 1999 with a B.A. in psychology.
Susan Benesch directs the Dangerous Speech Project (voicesthatpoison.org), working with local and international partners, for example in Kenya, to counter the effects of inflammatory speech. She is also a fellow at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, and teaches human rights at American University in Washington, D.C. From 2005 to 2009 she taught at universities including Georgetown and Baltimore, was Dean’s Visiting Scholar at Georgetown University Law Center, and was Senior Legal Advisor to the Center for Justice and Accountability, an NGO that brings cases against torturers and other human rights violators. Before those positions, Susan directed the Refugee Program at Amnesty International USA in Washington, D.C., where she focused on unaccompanied children, on Haitians, and on the detention of asylum-seekers.
As a Bernstein Fellow, Susan worked at the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (now Human Rights First), where she built a network of grassroots activists around asylum issues, and went on to advise the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum on building a similar network for genocide prevention. Susan graduated in 2001 from the Law School, where she founded the Cuba Exchange Project, sending Yale students to Havana to debate Cuban law students on topics including human rights.
For six years before law school, Susan was a full-time newspaper and magazine journalist in Latin America. She covered a dozen countries, focusing especially on Haiti and Cuba. Susan has also co-authored a book on the writing of poetry, called The Hand of the Poet (Rizzoli 1997).
Marco Simons is the Legal Director of EarthRights International (ERI), in Washington, D.C., which focuses on holding corporations and other actors accountable for human rights and environmental abuses. He also spent his Bernstein Fellowship year with ERI, working on transnational litigation and advocacy projects promoting multinational corporate responsibility and accountability for human rights violations.
After his fellowship year, Marco clerked for the Honorable Dorothy Wright Nelson on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Pasadena, California. He then practiced human rights and civil rights law with Hadsell & Stormer in Pasadena, California, before returning to ERI. With ERI and with Hadsell & Stormer, Marco was counsel in Doe v. Unocal Corp., a lawsuit seeking to hold oil companies liable for human rights abuses associated with a gas pipeline project in Myanmar (Burma); in 2005, the parties announced a historic settlement providing compensation to the plaintiffs. Marco has been involved in several other U.S. transnational lawsuits through ERI, including Wiwa v. Royal Dutch Petroleum (Shell), involving abuses against the Ogoni people of Nigeria, which also settled in 2009 on the eve of trial. ERI has been intimately involved with the Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum case, a companion case to the Wiwa case, submitting amicus briefs at all stages of the case and promoting the "Corporate Accountability Now" and "Too Big to Punish" public awareness campaigns. Marco's work at ERI also extends to promoting human rights and environmental accountability with lawyers in Southeast Asia and the Amazon basin.
Marco graduated in 1997 from Harvard College, where he received a joint degree in environmental science and archaeology, and graduated from Yale Law School in 2001. While at Yale, Marco served as a student director of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Project, a student-run organization; he also served as an editor on the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal and worked for a semester with the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, with which he traveled to Kenya to assist in researching and writing Spare the Child, a Human Rights Watch report on corporal punishment in Kenyan schools. He has taught human rights law at Occidental College and American University’s law school.
Fiona Doherty spent her fellowship year in Belfast, Northern Ireland, where she worked with the Committee on the Administration of Justice (CAJ). She assisted in CAJ’s efforts to ensure that the human rights commitments in the Good Friday Agreement were fully implemented. While at CAJ, Fiona worked on the implementation of a Bill of Rights for Northern Ireland and on reform of the judiciary. She also assisted in many of CAJ’s legal cases, involving such issues as the government’s use of lethal force, collusion between the security forces and paramilitaries, and prisoners’ rights.
After her fellowship, Fiona worked as a Senior Associate at the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (now Human Rights First). She worked primarily in the U.S. Law and Security Program but was also involved in the Human Rights Defenders’ Project, where she worked on issues relating to Northern Ireland. From 2005 – 2011, she was an Assistant Federal Defender at the Federal Defender’s office in the Southern District of New York. In 2011, she began as the Senior Liman Fellow in Residence and Clinical Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School.
Fiona graduated from the University of Virginia in 1996 with a B.A. in History and Slavic Languages and Literature. She graduated from the Law School in 1999. During her law school summers, she interned with the Office of the Post-Conviction Defender, an agency in Tennessee that represents death-row inmates on their state and federal habeas appeals, and the Mandela Institute for Prisoners in the West Bank. Upon graduation, Fiona received the C. LaRue Munson Prize for clinical work. After graduation, she clerked for the Honorable Martha Craig Daughtrey, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, in Nashville, Tennessee.
Robert D. Sloane (2000-01) spent his fellowship year working for Tibet Justice Center (formerly the International Committee of Lawyers for Tibet) to promote human rights for Tibetans, facilitate the legal representation of Tibetan refugees, and advocate for the Tibetan people’s right to self-determination. He traveled to Nepal and India to carry out field research and cooperated with the Tibetan government-in-exile in connection with its advocacy work at the United Nations and before human rights treaty bodies.
Rob received his B.A. in 1996 from Columbia University, where he studied philosophy; and his J.D. in 2000 from the Law School, where he worked for the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, serving as a student director in his third year, and received the Khosla Memorial Fund for Human Dignity Prize. In 2007, he also received a high-level diploma in public international law from the Hague Academy of International Law. After completing his fellowship, Rob clerked for Judge Robert D. Sack of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (2001-02); worked as an associate at Debevoise & Plimpton (2002-03), where he helped litigate the initial stages of the Avena case before the International Court of Justice; and clerked for Judge Gerard E. Lynch of the U.S District Court for the Southern District of New York (2003-04) (now of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit). He spent the 2004-05 academic year as a Schell Fellow and Visiting Lecturer at Yale, where he taught International Human Rights at Yale College and co-taught International Arbitration at the Law School. During the 2005-06 academic year, he worked as an Associate-in-Law at Columbia Law School. He is now an Associate Professor of Law at Boston University School of Law, where he teaches international law, national security and foreign relations law, the laws of war, criminal law, and related subjects. He has been a visiting professor at the University of Michigan Law School (Spring 2010), Harvard Law School (Spring 2011), where he served as the John Harvey Gregory Lecturer in World Organization, and The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Spring 2012). In 2010, his article, "The Cost of Conflation: Preserving the Dualism of Jus ad Bellum and Jus in Bello in the Contemporary Law of War," published in Volume 34 of the Yale Journal of International Law, won the American Society of International Law’s Francis Lieber Prize for outstanding scholarship in the field of the law of armed conflict by an author 35 years of age or younger; and in 2008, he received the Francis Lieber Prize certificate of merit for "Prologue to a Voluntarist War Convention," published in Volume 106 of the Michigan Law Review, based on the same criteria. Rob also serves as chairman of Tibet Justice Center’s board of directors.
Jonathan Freiman is a partner at Wiggin and Dana, where he chairs the Appellate and Complex Legal Issues practice group and co-chairs the Art and Museum Law practice group. Current cases include the defense of former President Zedillo of Mexico in a civil suit arising out of events during the Zapatista insurrection in the 1990s, a dispute between Yale and a Frenchman over ownership of Van Gogh’s masterpiece The Night Café, suits seeking accountability for torture, and litigation arising out of Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme; recent cases include the dispute between Yale and Peru over artifacts from Machu Picchu. He is regularly listed in Chambers USA, The Best Lawyers in America and SuperLawyers.
In 2002, he co-founded (with H. Koh) the National Litigation Project of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic at Yale and spent several years directing litigation on the balance between national security and civil liberty after 9/11. He served as lecturer, research scholar and clinical advisor at YLS, as a senior fellow at the Schell Center, and has spoken in Europe, Canada, and the U.S. at venues including the Federalist Society, a U.N. Expert Roundtable, PBS, and the BBC.
While a student, Jonathan served as student director of the Lowenstein Clinic, shared awards from the Florida Supreme Court and the Cuban American Bar Association and received the Albom Prize for excellence in appellate litigation. He was a Keck Fellow in Legal Ethics and Senior Editor of the Yale Law Journal. Following graduation, he taught a seminar on transitional justice in Yale College, clerked for former YLS Dean Hon. Louis H. Pollak, spent his Bernstein fellowship year examining ways to integrate human rights law into the core legal curriculum, and as a Schell Fellow led a team researching and analyzing governmental interception of refugees at sea.
Jaya Ramji-Nogales spent her fellowship year launching a refugee law clinic at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. Her work in South Africa included representing asylum seekers before the Refugee Appeal Board; bringing legal challenges to conform South African refugee policy to international standards; and training law students, UNHCR employees, government officials, NGOs, and refugee communities in refugee law.
Jaya is an Associate Professor at Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, where she teaches Civil Procedure, Evidence, Refugee Law and Policy, and Transitional Justice. From 2004 to 2006, she was a fellow at the Georgetown University Law Center, where she supervised students representing asylum seekers. From 2002 to 2004, Jaya was a staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union in New York. After returning from Africa, she joined Debevoise & Plimpton, where her pro bono projects included a Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act challenge to the Ethiopian government’s unlawful expropriation of property from individuals of Eritrean descent, a suit initiated by the Lowenstein Clinic based on Noah Novogrodsky’s Bernstein Fellowship work; writing a report for Human Rights First on the comparative law and practice of detention of asylum seekers; and supervising the asylum program.
Jaya graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1995 and from Yale Law School in 1999. As a law student, Jaya joined both the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic and the Immigration Legal Services Clinic. During her summers, Jaya worked with the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project; the South Asia Human Rights Documentation Center in New Delhi, India; and the Documentation Center of Cambodia in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Among other publications, she has written two pieces stemming from her work in South Africa: “Inside Illegality: Migration Policing in South Africa after Apartheid,” 48(3) Africa Today 35 (2001) (with Jonathan Klaaren) and “Interpretation Consistent with International Law? The Detention of Asylum Seekers in South Africa,” 20(3) Refuge 1 (2002).
Mark Templeton spent his fellowship year in Bangkok, Thailand, where he helped to establish a regional office for the New Delhi-based South Asia Human Rights Documentation Center (SAHRDC). During that time, he carried out a fact-finding trip to Pakistan and worked with grass-roots organizations in northeastern Thailand, representing fishers and farmers affected by development projects. He also published an article about human rights protections under the new Thai constitution and wrote a report on Indonesia’s National Human Rights Commission.
After completing his fellowship year, Mark served as Special Assistant to Assistant U.S. Secretary of State Harold Koh. He was a member of the U.S. delegation to the 2001 U.N. Commission on Human Rights. Mark received an A.B. degree in Social Studies from Harvard College in 1994. A 1999 graduate of the Law School, Mark was a student director of the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic. He served as a research associate with the SAHRDC in Delhi during the summer between his first and second years of law school and published a summary of his broadcasting-reform research project. He has served as a consultant and author for Human Rights Watch and a consultant and editor for the Open Society Institute. While a consultant for McKinsey & Company, his clients included the U.N. Development Program’s Commission on the Private Sector and Development and leading biodiversity conservation organizations. He was Associate Dean for Finance and Administration at the Law School from 2005 to 2009, was Director of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources from 2009 to 2010, was Executive Director of the $20 billion fund BP set up to address the claims of those affected by the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico from 2010 to 2011, and is now Assistant Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School.
The 1998-99 Fellows
M. Ahadi Bugg-Levine received the Bernstein to promote the rights of people with disabilities while working at the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) in Johannesburg, South Africa. Ahadi drafted and provided technical support for the disability provisions of South Africa’s Equality Act; educated disability rights activists on the legislation; and assessed disability-related complaints submitted to the SAHRC.
Currently, Ahadi is the President of Bugg-Levine, Inc. an independent consulting practice. Ahadi has advocated for the rights of women, people with disabilities, children, and racial and ethnic minorities in Africa, the Caribbean, the Middle East, and the United States. She uses these experiences to provide strategic and implementation services to non-profits including foundations and non-governmental organizations. Ahadi graduated from Wellesley College in 1992. She received her J.D. from the Law School and her M.A. in Political Science from Yale University in 1998. She earned her Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale University in 2001.
Noah Novogrodsky is an Associate Professor at the University of Wyoming Law School. Noah was awarded a Bernstein Fellowship for 1998-99 to conduct constitutional development work in the Horn of Africa. When war broke out in May 1998 between Eritrea and Ethiopia, Noah turned his attention to investigating and documenting war-related human rights abuses, visiting refugee camps on both sides of the border, writing articles for publication in U.S. media, and sharing his findings with human rights groups, aid agencies, and UN officials. In particular, Noah sought to highlight the gross violation of rights resulting from Ethiopia’s expulsion of thousands of ethnic Eritreans and the expropriation of their property.
Noah graduated from Swarthmore College with a B.A. in Political Science in 1992 and earned an M.Phil in International Relations from the University of Cambridge in 1994. While at the Law School, he co-taught a seminar called “Bearing Witness” with Professor Harlon Dalton, co-chaired the Cambodia Genocide Justice Project, worked as a Research Assistant for Professors Owen Fiss and Paul Gewirtz, and acted as a team leader for the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic. With Jeff Prescott and Bob Ahdieh, he received the 1996-97 C. LaRue Munson Prize. Following his graduation from Yale Law School in 1997, Noah worked as Law Clerk for Judge Nancy Gertner of the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts. Between January 2000 and July 2002, Noah was an associate in the San Francisco office of Howard, Rice, Nemerovski, Canady, Falk & Rabkin. From September 2002 until May 2008, Noah was an Adjunct Professor and the Director of the International Human Rights Program at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. In September 2003, Noah began Canada’s first international human rights clinic at the University of Toronto law school. Between 2008 and 2009, Noah served as a Senior Scholar at Georgetown University Law Center and a Visiting Professor at the University of Connecticut School of Law.
Jeffrey Prescott is currently serving as a Special Advisor for National Security Affairs in the Office of the Vice President. He was appointed as a White House Fellow for 2010-2011. He spent his Bernstein fellowship year (1998-99) at the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (now Human Rights First), where he helped establish the Rights Defenders Program, which provides lifelines for lawyers and activists at risk around the world.
Most recently, Jeff was Deputy Director of the China Law Center and Senior Research Scholar and Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School. He joined the China Law Center in 2002 and founded and directed the Center’s Beijing office, and was a Visiting Scholar of Peking University Law School. In 2001, as a Luce Scholar, he taught the first ever course on human rights law at Fudan University in Shanghai. Jeff is a 1997 graduate of Yale Law School and clerked for the Hon. Walter K. Stapleton, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.