Moderator and Speaker Profiles

Moderators

George Bermann is the Jean Monnet Professor of EU Law, Walter Gellhorn Professor of Law at Columbia Law School. In addition he is the Director for the Center for International Commercial and Investment Arbitration.

A Columbia Law School faculty member since 1975, Bermann teaches courses in transnational dispute resolution (international arbitration and litigation), European Union law, administrative law, and WTO law. He is an affiliated faculty member of the School of Law of Sciences Po in Paris and the MIDS Masters Program in International Dispute Settlement in Geneva. He is also a visiting professor at the Georgetown Law Center. At the Law School, he founded both the European Legal Studies Center and the Columbia Journal of European Law.

Bermann is an active international arbitrator in commercial and investment disputes; chief reporter of the ALI’s Restatement of the U.S. Law of International Commercial Arbitration; co-author of the UNCITRAL Guide to the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards; chair of the Global Advisory Board of the New York International Arbitration Center (NYIAC); co-editor-in-chief of the American Review of International Arbitration; and founding member of the governing body of the ICC Court of Arbitration and a member of its standing committee.

He has been a visiting scholar at the European Commission Legal Service in Brussels; the French Conseil d'Etat; the Max Planck Institute for Foreign Public Law and International Law in Heidelberg, Germany; and Princeton University’s Center for International Studies.

His published works include: “International Arbitration and Private International Law,” Hague Academy of International Law; Interpretation and Application of the New York Convention by National Courts; “Mandatory Rules in International Arbitration”; Transnational Litigation: Cases & Materials on European Union Law; and Introduction to French Law. Among his most recent articles are “Yukos v. Russia: Unanswered Questions” and “International Standards as a Choice of Law Option.”

Bermann has a J.D. and a B.A. from Yale University and an LL.M. from Columbia Law School. He holds honorary degrees from the Universities of Fribourg in Switzerland, Versailles-St. Quentin in France and Universidad César Vallejo in Peru.

Bar Admissions: State of New York (1972); U.S. District Court, E.D. New York (1980); U.S. District Court, S.D. New York (1980); US Supreme Court (1992)

He will moderating the panel "Reshaping ISDS Through a Multilateral Investment Court: A Closer Look at the Desirability and Workability of the EU’s Proposal".

 

Frances Bivens is a partner in Davis Polk’s Litigation Department and regularly acts as lead counsel in a broad range of high stakes commercial litigation matters in federal and state courts around the country and arbitrations around the globe. Ms. Bivens has an electrical engineering degree and specializes in litigation involving technical issues. She also regularly handles complex financial matters. Her practice is international and has included cross-border disputes arising out of India, China, Korea, Hungary, France, Switzerland, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and the United Kingdom.

Bar Admissions: State of New York; U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit; U.S. District Court, N.D. Illinois; U.S. District Court, E.D. New York; U.S. District Court, S.D. New York

She will be moderating the panel "Interactive Relations Between Court Systems and Arbitration in Asia".

Kabir Duggal is a Senior Associate at Arnold & Porter. He focuses his practice on international investment arbitration, international commercial arbitration and public international law matters. Mr. Duggal's experience includes complex disputes under numerous bilateral/multilateral investment treaties and contracts in South Asia, Latin America, Central Asia, Middle East, Europe and Africa. The total value of the disputes he has been involved in exceeds 80 billion dollars. He has facilitated the mediation and negotiation of complex disputes. He also acts as a Consultant for the United Nations Office of the High Representative for Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (UN-OHRLLS) on the creation of a novel "Investment Support Program." He has also conducted training and capacity-building sessions for several Governments including Colombia, Saudi Arabia, Myanmar, India, among others on public international law and dispute resolution matters.

Bar Admissions: England and Wales (Solicitor), New York, Washington D.C. and India.

He will be moderating the panel "What Does it Mean to be Pro-Arbitration?".

Howard Zelbo is a partner at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton whose practice focuses on international arbitration and complex commercial litigation. He has extensive experience as the lead attorney in numerous arbitrations and has represented banking and other financial institutions in commercial disputes. He has also represented both bidders and targets in several takeover litigations. He is a  Member of the Advisory Committee of the International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution as well as a former Chairman of the Securities Litigation Committee of the New York State Bar Association.

Bar Admissions: Connecticut, New York

He will be moderating the panel "Hot Topics in Energy Arbitration in Latin America".

Caroline Richard is a partner in Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer's international arbitration group, based in Washington, DC.

Caroline has acted in many international commercial and investor-state arbitrations, focusing on energy and natural resources disputes, among others, in Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa and beyond. She is co-author of the forthcoming Guide to the ICSID Additional Facility Rules, to be published by Oxford University Press. Caroline was named a “Rising Star” by Law360, recognizing her as one of just ten outstanding arbitration practitioners in the nation under the age of 40.

She is recognized as a leader in the field of arbitration. Since 2011, Ms. Richard has co-taught a course on investment treaty arbitration as an adjunct professor at American University. She also serves as an advisory board member to the US-based Institute for Transnational Arbitration and the Young Canadian Arbitration Practitioners group. Ms. Richard holds an LLM from Harvard Law School, an LLM from Cambridge University and an LLB / DESS from the Université de Montréal.

Bar Admissions: New York, the District of Columbia and Ontario, Canada

She will be be moderating the panel "What does Diversity Bring to Arbitration?".

Keynote Speaker

Gaëtan Verhoosel

Gaëtan Verhoosel a founding partner of Three Crowns and has served as advocate or arbitrator in a large number of both commercial and investment treaty arbitrations.  He is the Co-Chair of the IBA Arbitration Committee and teaches at King’s College School of Law.

Prior to entering private practice, Gaëtan served as a legal advisor at the World Trade Organization, where he advised dispute settlement panels adjudicating disputes between sovereigns across a range of industry sectors.

Gaëtan has been ranked as a leading international arbitration practitioner in all major publications, including Chambers (UK, Global, Europe, and Latin America), PLC Which Lawyer (England), Legal 500 (UK), Legal 500 (Latin America), Who’s Who Legal, and the Arbitration Power List.

Bar Admissions: Madrid (2003); Paris (2004); England & Wales, Registered European Lawyer (2009)

Panelists

Julie Bédard is a Partner, International Litigation and Arbitration at Skadden. She is head of Skadden’s International Arbitration Group for the Americas. She concentrates her practice on complex international litigation and arbitration and also advises companies and boards in internal investigations and regulatory matters.

Ms. Bédard represents clients in federal and state courts in the United States and has served as counsel in international arbitration proceedings held under the auspices of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the American Arbitration Association (AAA), the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). She regularly advises clients on protecting their global investments under international treaties and provides strategic advice on drafting dispute resolution clauses in international commercial contracts. Trained in both civil and common law, she is experienced in conflict of laws and represents clients in connection with litigation and arbitration proceedings throughout the world, raising disputes on governing law, jurisdiction, the enforcement of arbitration agreements, extraterritorial discovery and international judgment enforcement.

Bar Admissions: Foreign Law Consultant - Brazil, 2015; New York, 2002; Quebec, 1997; U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, 2004

John Beechey CBE is among the best-known arbitrators in the world. He has served as chairman, party-appointed arbitrator, or sole arbitrator on international arbitral tribunals in both 'ad hoc' (including UNCITRAL) and institutional arbitrations under the Rules of all major arbitral institutions including, inter alia, the EDF, ICC, ICDR/AAA, ICSID, LCIA, PCA, SIAC and Stockholm Chamber. He was admitted as a Solicitor in England and Wales in 1977. He has also served, or is currently serving, as an arbitrator on the panels for 20 investor-state disputes, seven of which are pending.

John is a past President of the International Court of Arbitration of the ICC (2009-2015). His term of office at the ICC is regarded as one which brought about significant reform to, and the reinvigoration of, the ICC Court. He had previously served on the Executive Committee of the Board of the AAA in New York and as a Vice-President and member of the Board of the LCIA. He is the current Chairman of the Board of the BVI International Arbitration Centre. In March 2018, John was elected to serve a four year term on the Governing Board of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA). Before his retirement from private practice in the City of London, he was the founding partner and Head of the highly-regarded International Arbitration Group of Clifford-Turner (subsequently, Clifford Chance LLP) (1983-2008). In June 2016, John was appointed CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to international arbitration.

Bar Admissions: England & Wales (1977)

Harry Burnett is a Partner at King & Spalding who focuses on international commercial and investor-state arbitration matters, along with general domestic and international litigation. He represents clients in a broad array of international disputes and frequently serves as an arbitrator in international disputes.

Harry has been ranked in both Chambers Global and Chambers USA, as well as in Chambers Latin America for International Arbitration and Legal 500 Latin America. He has also been recognized by The International Who’s Who of Oil & Gas Lawyers and The International Who’s Who of Energy Lawyers.

A frequent speaker and author, Harry is fluent in English, Spanish and Portuguese.

Bar Admissions: Illinois New Jersey, New York, Supreme Court of the United States, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma

Alison Chang is a senior associate of King and Wood Mallesons.  She is qualified in Taiwan, Mainland China and New York State. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) and an approved assessor and lecturer of various CIArb training courses.  She is also the chair of CIArb Taiwan Chapter’s Young Members Group. 

She is listed on the panel of arbitrators of Chinese Arbitration Association (CAA) and CAA International Arbitration Centre, as well as the panel of China Specialist Mediators of Singapore International Mediation Centre.  In addition, she is an Accredited Tribunal Secretary of Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre. Alison has vast experiences in dispute resolution as well as cross-border investment transactions. She started as a practitioner at law firm in Taipei in 2005 and then served as a Judge at Taipei District Court from 2007 to 2012. She left the bench to study at Columbia Law School and returned to private practice in Taipei. She then joined King and Wood Mallesons as a senior associate in 2015. She often acts as counsel on a wide variety of commercial related disputes before courts at all levels in Taiwan and in arbitrations.

Alison obtained her Bachelor of Business Administration from National Taiwan University. She later received her master degree of law from National Taipei University and her LL.M. from Columbia Law School.

Bar Admissions: New York, People's Republic of China (PRC), Taiwan

Carlos Forbes is the current President of the Centre for Arbitration and Mediation of the Chamber of Commerce Brazil-Canada (CAM/CCBC). He has a law degree from the State University of Rio de Janeiro (LLB, 1988). He also has a postgraduate degree (1991) and a master’s degree in civil procedural law (1994), from the Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo. He is well-known in the practice of arbitration, as a lawyer and arbitrator, in domestic and international conflicts involving civil, corporate, commercial and regulatory law.

Bar Admission: Brazil

Grant Hanessian serves as chair of the Firm’s International Arbitration Group in North America. He chaired the Litigation Department of the Firm’s New York office from 2003 to 2012.

Mr. Hanessian has more than 30 years of experience as counsel and arbitrator in disputes concerning contract, investment treaty, energy, construction, commodities, financial services, insurance, intellectual property and other matters before virtually all of the world’s major arbitration institutions.

Mr. Hanessian is the US member of the ICC International Court of Arbitration in Paris, chairman of the Arbitration Committee of the US Council for International Business (US national committee of the ICC), and a member of the ICC’s Commission on Arbitration, and its Task Forces on Arbitration Involving States or State Entities and on Financial Institutions and International Arbitration (leader of Investment Arbitration and Banking & Finance work stream). He is vice president (for US) of the London Court of Arbitration's North American Users' Council and a member of the American Arbitration Association—International Centre for Dispute Resolution’s International Advisory Committee and its Advisory Committee on Brazil, the Singapore International Arbitration Centre's Users Council, the International Arbitration Club of New York, the Arbitration Committee of the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution, the New York City Bar Association's Committee on International Commercial Disputes and Club Español del Arbitraje, and is a founding board member of the New York International Arbitration Center.

Mr. Hanessian is editor of ICDR Awards and Commentaries, Vol I (Juris Pub., 2012) and Vol II (forthcoming Juris Pub. 2018), International Arbitration Checklists (Juris Pub., 3rd ed., 2016), Gulf War Claims Reporter (ILI/Kluwer, 1998),Baker McKenzie's International Litigation & Arbitration Newsletter, and Baker McKenzie's International Arbitration Yearbook. He has authored more than 50 articles and book chapters and spoken at conferences and universities worldwide on international dispute resolution topics.

Mr. Hanessian is annually recommended by Chambers Global and USA Guides (described as “very knowledgeable and strategic in his offering of critical advice,” an "elite lawyer" who is "very experienced, hugely knowledgeable and effective," a "powerful advocate for clients"), Legal 500 (described as “a great practitioner” with a “strong commercial profile”), PLC Which Lawyer, The International Who's Who of Arbitration (described as "very well known and well regarded" for being a "superb counsel and arbitrator") and Expert Guide to Leading Practitioners in International Arbitration (ranked among "Best of the Best" in international commercial arbitration).

Bar Admissions: New York (1986)

Joshua Karton is an Associate Professor and the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research at the Queen’s University Faculty of Law in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. He holds a BA in International Relations and Humanities from Yale, a JD from Columbia Law School, and a PhD in International Law from Cambridge. Before commencing his doctoral studies, he practiced in litigation and arbitration in the New York office of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.

Professor Karton teaches and writes about international commercial law and dispute resolution, in particular international arbitration. He has received wide recognition for his research, including the James Crawford Prize of the Journal of International Dispute Settlement and the International and Comparative Law Quarterly Young Scholar Award. He presents regularly at academic and practitioner conferences around the world. A proficient speaker of Mandarin Chinese with a longstanding interest in Asia, he has held visiting positions at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the National Taiwan University, and Wuhan University.

Much of Professor Karton’s work is interdisciplinary, influenced in particular by sociological theories and methods. His sociology of the international commercial arbitration field, The Culture of International Arbitration and the Evolution of Contract Law, was published in 2013 to great acclaim. He is also closely engaged with international arbitration practice as a consultant and as a member of various task forces, working parties, and other practitioner groups. He serves as Managing Editor of the Canadian Journal of Commercial Arbitration.

Bar Admission: New York

 

Joongi Kim is Professor of Law at Yonsei Law School in Seoul, Korea. His research focuses on international dispute resolution, international trade and investment, corporate governance and corruption. His treatise International Arbitration in Korea (OUP) received the 11th Simdang International Trade and Business Research Award. The Founding Executive Director of the Hills Governance Center in Korea, he has held professorship or visiting positions at Hongik University, Keio University, National Law School of India University (Bangalore), National University of Singapore  and the University of Florida and is presently an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown. He acts as an Editorial Board Member of International Investment Law and Arbitration and the Asian Journal of Comparative Law. Serving as an international arbitrator in commercial and investment disputes, he sits on the Panel of Arbitrators of the ICSID, Global Green Growth Institute, Korea-US FTA, and Korea-EU FTA in addition to AIAC, BAC, CAA, CRCICA, CIETAC, DIAC, HKIAC, JCAA, KCAB, RAC, SCCA, SCIA, SHIAC, SIAC, and VIAC.

Bar Admissions: New York (1993), District of Columbia (1994)

Dana Macgrath is an Investment Manager and Legal Counsel at Bentham IMF, responsible for leading the company’s investments in international arbitration matters and contributing to its commercial litigation funding efforts. Bentham was the first publicly listed litigation finance company and has almost two decades of experience with an unparalleled record of success. 

Prior to joining Bentham, Macgrath was in the international arbitration practice group at several global law firms, including Sidley Austin LLP, Allen & Overy LLP and O’Melveny & Myers LLP, having started my legal career at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. Macgrath has a broad range of experience in international arbitration and litigation. While in private practice, she focused on arbitration of complex commercial disputes and litigation in aid of arbitration, including represented both U.S. and foreign parties regarding the enforceability of arbitraton. Macgrath been recognized as a leading practitioner of international arbitration in various directories, including Chambers USA and Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration. 

Macgrath is currently President of the Board of ArbitralWomen. She is also Co-Chair of the CPR Institute's Arbitration Rules Revision Committee. I am the immediate former Chair of the Arbitration Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York (September 2015-June 2018). 

Macgrath is an adjunct professor of law at Brooklyn Law School, where she teaches a seminar on international commercial arbitration and coach the Brooklyn Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot team. She also serve as an arbitrator.

Bar Admission: New York

Yoshimi Ohara is a Partner at Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu, Tokyo office. She represented both domestic and foreign clients in international arbitration in various seats under the rules of the ICC, ICSID, AAA/ICDR, SIAC and JCAA.  Before launching her international arbitration practice, she was active in the area of corporate transactions and IP disputes.  With a strong corporate and IP background, she has extensive experience in dealing with disputes covering a wide range of subjects, including M&A, joint ventures, investment, infrastructure, energy, construction, insurance, joint development, technology transfer, license, procurement, sales and distribution.  Yoshimi served as sole arbitrator and presiding arbitrator in international arbitration under auspices of the ICC, SIAC, JCAA, KCAB and UNCITRAL rules in various seats.  She helped shaping soft law in the field of international arbitration as a member of task force of professional conduct of counsel and conflicts of Interest subcommittee of IBA Arbitration Committee.  Ms. Ohara is currently serving as a Vice President of ICC Court, a Governing Board member of the ICCA and the board member of Japan Association of Arbitrators and Swiss Arbitration Association.  She also served as a Vice-President of LCIA (2013-2015). She teaches International Arbitration at Keio University Law School (2014-).

Bar Admissions: Japan (1992), New York (1997)

William Park is Professor of Law at Boston University. His practice and teaching focus on international financial and commercial transactions.

After studies at Yale and Columbia, Park practiced law in Paris before returning home to Boston to teach tax and banking. He served as Director of the Boston University Center for Banking Law Studies and has held visiting appointments at the universities of Cambridge, Dijon, Hong Kong, Auckland and Geneva, as well as Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

Park is General Editor of Arbitration International and former President of the London Court of International Arbitration. He has served as Arbitrator on the Claims Resolution Tribunal for Dormant Accounts in Switzerland and the Appeals Tribunal of the International Commission on Holocaust Era Insurance Claims. Currently he sits on the NAFTA Chapter 14 Financial Services Roster.

He has served as arbitrator in both institutional and ad hoc proceedings and arbitrates in French as well as English. Subject matters include joint ventures, insurance, foreign investment, acquisitions, tax, gas price adjustment, loan agreements and licenses for intellectual property.

Bar Admissions: Massachusetts (1972), District of Columbia (1980)

Patrick W. Pearsall is a partner at the firm of Jenner & Block and is the chair of its Public International Law Practice.  He is recommended in the Legal 500 and in 2019 is ranked as the second "Most Highly Regarded" arbitration practitioner in the Americas out of several hundred listed in the peer and client reviewed Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration, where he is recognized as "an incredible advocate," "whose razor-sharp mind is unmatched" and who is a "leader in public international law and investment treaty arbitration."   He has extensive experience representing parties in complex commercial arbitration and investment disputes.  Mr. Pearsall served in the U.S. State Department from 2009-2017 and was the Chief of Investment Arbitration from 2015 onward.  He has arbitrated claims involving billions of dollars on behalf of the United States, other sovereign states, and private investors in both commercial arbitration and investment arbitration.  He is a trusted adviser to governments and private entities and is regularly called upon to provide strategic counsel before a dispute arises.  In addition to his representations, he has advised on the revision of the International Court of Arbitration’s (ICC) rules and led the negotiations of several bilateral and multilateral treaties.  Most recently, he advised on the negotiation of the investment provisions in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership, and the U.S.-China Bilateral Investment Treaty.

Bar Admissions: New York (2006), District of Columbia (2009)

Fiona Poon is a member of the International Dispute Resolution Group at Debevoise, based in New York.  Ms. Poon’s recent representations include investor-state arbitrations and international commercial disputes, including in parallel arbitrations before the ICSID and the ICC International Court of Arbitration.  Prior to joining Debevoise in 2015, Ms. Poon was a Legal Counsel at the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, the Netherlands.  In that capacity, she assisted arbitral tribunals in inter-state, investment, and commercial arbitrations involving states (including Asian states), brought under the auspices of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules and the PCA Environmental Rules.  From 2007 to 2012, Ms. Poon worked as a solicitor in the litigation practice of a leading international law firm in Sydney, Australia, with particular experience in regulatory investigations and complex commercial litigation in the financial services, infrastructure, construction, and mining sectors.  She received an LL.M. from New York University School of Law in 2013 and her B.Com/LL.B. from the University of New South Wales in 2006.  She is qualified in Australia and New York.

Bar Admissions: New South Wales, Australia; New York

W. Michael Reisman is Myres S. McDougal Professor of International Law at the Yale Law School where he has been on the Faculty since 1965. He has been a visiting professor in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Berlin, Basel, Paris and Geneva. He is a Fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science and a former member of its Executive Council, a former member of the Advisory Committee on International Law of the Department of State, President of the Arbitration Tribunal of the Bank for International Settlements, and a member of the Board of The Foreign Policy Association. He has been elected to the Institut de Droit International. He was President of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of American States, Vice-President and Honorary Vice-President of the American Society of International Law, Editor-in-Chief of the American Journal of International Law, and Vice-Chairman of the Policy Sciences Center, Inc. He has served as arbitrator and counsel in many international cases and was presiding arbitrator in the OSPAR arbitration (Ireland v. UK) and arbitrator in the Eritrea/Ethiopia Boundary Dispute and in the Abyei (Sudan) Boundary Dispute.

His most recent books are: International Commercial Arbitration: Cases, Materials, and Notes on the Resolution of International Business Disputes (with W. Laurence Craig, William Park and Jan Paulsson) (Foundation Press) (2nd Edition) (2015); Foreign Investment Disputes: Cases, Materials and Commentary (with R. Doak Bishop and James R. Crawford) (Kluwer Law International) (2nd Edition) (2014); Fraudulent Evidence Before Public International Tribunals: The Dirty Stories of International Law (Hersch Lauterpacht Memorial Lectures) (with Christina Parajon Skinner) (Cambridge University Press) (2014); The Quest for World Order and Human Dignity in the Twenty-first Century: Constitutive Process and Individual Commitment: General Course on Public International Law (Hague Academy of International Law, 2012).

Bar Admission: Connecticut (1964)

Julissa Reynoso is a Partner at Winston & Strawn LLP. She focuses her practice on international arbitration, international litigation, and complex commercial litigation. Ms. Reynoso's extensive experience includes analyzing and advising on complex cross-border matters and disputes before U.S. Courts and Agencies, and conducting arbitrations under the major international rules, including ICC and UNCITRAL, and bilateral investment treaty disputes under the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (DR-CAFTA) and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

She has been appointed to co-chair New York Attorney General Letitia James’ transition committee. In addition she is the former United States Ambassador to Uruguay. She also served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Central American, Caribbean and Cuban Affairs in the US Department of State.

Ms. Reynosos is the recipient of various public interest awards, including recognitions from Columbia University, New York University, the North Star Fund, the Legal Aid Society and the Hispanic National Bar Foundation. She serves on the boards of several nonprofit and advocacy organizations, and was on the faculty of Columbia Law School and Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs. She speaks Spanish and Portuguese.

Bar Admission: New York

Maribel Rodríguez Vargas specializes in international litigation, commercial and investment arbitration, and alternative dispute resolution. She represents clients in commercial and investment disputes in several sectors, as well as in disputes concerning company sale transactions and other corporate transactions.

She participates in arbitrations (i) of the ICSID, part of the World Bank Group; (ii) of the ICC International Court of Arbitration; (iii) under the UNCITRAL arbitration rules; (iv) administered by the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA); (v) of the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC); and (vi) of the Court of Arbitration of Madrid, the Civil and Commercial Court of Madrid, and the Court of Arbitration of Madrid. She also acts in proceedings before dispute adjudication boards incorporated in compliance with FIDIC contracts.

Before joining Cuatrecasas, she was a foreign associate at Dechert, LLP (New York, USA) in the Litigation and International Arbitration Practice.

Bar Admissions: Spain (Madrid), New York

Aníbal Sabater is a Partner at Chaffetz Lindsey LLP. He is an international arbitration specialist with over 20 years of experience, representing clients from around the world and industries as diverse as construction, energy, mining, shipping, technology, and telecommunications, in arbitrations under all major international arbitration rules, including AAA/ICDR, ICC, LCIA, and UNCITRAL. He has also acted in several investment arbitration cases under the UNCITRAL Rules and the ICSID Convention/Rules, as well as in commercial disputes involving states and state-owned entities. Licensed in several US jurisdictions, England and Wales (solicitor), and Spain, Aníbal has represented clients in disputes governed by the laws of more than 20 nations across Latin America, North America, Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.

Spain, 1997, California, 2005, Roll of solicitors in England and Wales, 2008., District of Columbia, 2011, Registered Foreign Legal Consultant, New York, 2012.

Garth Schofield is Senior Legal Counsel at the Permanent Court of Arbitration. Mr. Schofield has administered numerous arbitrations and works closely with arbitral tribunals acting as registrar or secretary to the tribunal. Mr. Schofield has assisted the arbitral tribunals constituted in the Bay of Bengal Maritime Boundary Arbitration (Bangladesh v. India); Indus Waters Kishenganga Arbitration (Pakistan v. India); Chagos Marine Protected Area Arbitration (Mauritius v. United Kingdom); ARA Libertad Arbitration (Argentina v. Ghana); Railway Land Arbitration (Malaysia/Singapore); Arbitration under the Timor Sea Treaty (Timor-Leste v. Australia); South China Sea Arbitration (Philippines v. China); Arbitration concerning Article 8(b) of the Timor Sea Treaty (Timor-Leste v. Australia); and the Timor Sea Conciliation (Timor-Leste v. Australia). Mr. Schofield is a graduate of Yale Law School and The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. Prior to joining the PCA, Mr. Schofield’s work included litigation on international law matters in U.S. courts and rule of law initiatives for the United Nations Mission in Sudan. He is admitted to practice in the state of New York.

Luke Sobota is a founding partner of Three Crowns and is based in the firm’s Washington, DC office.  His practice is dedicated to commercial, investor-state, and inter-state arbitration, and he has extensive experience in the energy, financial, and technology sectors. He is recognized in leading directories and rankings, such as Chambers & Partners, Legal 500, and Who’s Who Legal.  

Luke regularly writes and speaks about issues of international law and arbitration.  His monograph General Principles of Law and International Due Process was recently published by Oxford University Press.  Along with former ICJ President Stephen Schwebel, Luke is co-authoring a second edition of International Arbitration: Three Salient Principles, which is due to be published later this year by Cambridge University Press.  He is co-director of the International Arbitration Workshop at Harvard Law School, where he will be a Lecturer in Law beginning in the next academic year.  Luke also law school courses on international arbitration at American University and the University of Miami. 

Luke previously worked in the Office of Legal Counsel at the U.S. Department of Justice, where he advised and prepared formal legal opinions for executive branch officials on a range of constitutional, international, and administrative law issues.  He earned his law degree from the University of Chicago Law School, after which he clerked for the late Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, William H. Rehnquist.

Bar Admission: New York, California, Washington D.C.

Shane Spelliscy is the acting Director and General Counsel of the Investment and Services Division of the Trade Law Bureau at the Government of Canada. He is also the Chair of the Uncitral Working Group III.

Bar Admission: New York (2003)

Alex Spiro is a partner based in Quinn Emmanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP's New York office. Mr. Spiro is a graduate of Harvard Law School. As a Manhattan prosecutor, among other cases, Mr. Spiro helped indict and convict Rodney Alcala, the “Dating Game” serial killer, for two New York murders in the 1970s, and, convicted, at trial, serial murderer Travis Woods. He also worked with the Conviction Integrity Unit investigating potential wrongful convictions.

Mr. Spiro has, as lead counsel, tried well over 50 cases to verdict. Notably, over the last several years, he has secured a string of significant acquittals for his clients in both federal and state court.

Mr. Spiro’s practice area focuses largely on “white collar” crime. In addition, Mr. Spiro represents individuals and companies in almost every type of litigation across the globe. He has also handled an array of complex investigations across many industries.

In addition, Mr. Spiro has served on the faculty of Harvard’s Trial Advocacy Program for the past several years and is Chairman of the Board of Harvard's criminal justice initiative - The Fair Punishment Project. As an attorney, Mr. Spiro has lectured on a variety of subjects including trial practice, corporate privilege, evidence, and criminal law. Mr. Spiro is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, and has received several other academic and professional citations, including the Albert Imlah writing award, the ACC Northeast Ethics Lawyering award, the NYLJ Rising Star award, and the 2018 Law360 "Rising Star" award for White Collar. He also sits on several company boards – both private and public.

Prior to becoming a lawyer, Mr. Spiro studied bio-psychology and worked at Harvard’s Psychiatric Facility, McLean Hospital. In his five plus years at McLean, Mr. Spiro supervised departments of an adolescent treatment facility and ran a program for children with Autism and Asperger’s syndrome.

Bar Admission: New York

Erin Thomas is Special Counsel in Covington & Burling LLP's arbitration practice.  She advises clients from a range of industries and geographic regions in commercial and investment treaty arbitrations, with a particular focus on construction and natural resource disputes.  Her recent representations include advising Ukraine’s state-owned oil and gas company in an investment dispute with the Russian Federation arising from Russia’s unlawful occupation of Crimea; representing clients in several international commercial arbitrations arising from mining projects in Latin America; and representing two global union federations in the first enforcement of a business and human rights compact through arbitration. 

Ms. Thomas writes and speaks on issues in international arbitration, and was instrumental in developing the original curriculum for the Covington Academy on International Arbitration, an annual training program conducted by Covington in partnership with Columbia Law School's Center for International Commercial & Investment Arbitration.  She holds a B.A. from the University of Chicago, an M. Phil. from Cambridge University, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Bar Admission: New York

Kristen Young is a Partner at White & Case LLP and practices with the International Arbitration and Litigation Groups in Washington, DC, where she focuses on investment treaty arbitration. She has been recognized as a Future Leader in Who's Who Legal: Arbitration (2017 and 2018). Clients praise Kristen for her "full command of the facts in the case and legal theories – she has them all at her fingertips."

Ms. Young represents multinational corporations and sovereign states in high-stakes international disputes involving complex issues of law and fact. She has obtained precedential victories for her clients in cutting-edge cases, including for the Ukraine in Global Trading Resource Corp. and Globex International, Inc. v. Ukraine, the first case ever dismissed under ICSID Arbitration Rule 41(5).

She represents clients in arbitrations before all major arbitral forums, including ICSID, the PCA, and the ICC, as well as in ad hoc arbitrations under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules. She has served as counsel in cases arising under numerous bilateral investment treaties and the DR-CAFTA. Her experience spans a wide range of industries, including electricity, mining and minerals, oil and gas, textile manufacturing, construction, and consumer and retail services.

Bar Admissions: District of Columbia, New York