Board of Directors Institute relies on the advice and mentorship of several people to make our work relevant, effective, and impactful. Our Board of Directors graciously volunteers time to give us guidance on everything from research agendas to project design and awareness building. 

Jeffrey Aresty

Principal, Aresty International Law Offices, P.C.

Fellow, Center for Information Technology and Dispute Resolution at UMass
Jeffrey M. Aresty, Esq. is a lawyer originally from Boston, Massachusetts and currently living in Houston, TX. He has been involved in international business law and the role of technology in the transformation of the practice of law for almost four decades. 

Mr. Aresty is the founder and current President of, Inc. which leads the technology and rule of law project, PeaceTones, for the World Justice Forum. The initial focus of The PeaceTones Project is designed to create sustainable income opportunities for individuals from developing areas and conflict zones. Part of IBO and the JusticeHub Innovation Lab, The Invisibles project directly addresses a lack of access to opportunity, a major component of access to justice, caused by a lack of identification.  Opportunities exist for stateless refugees and others to acquire education, receive healthcare, and receive protection under the law, but those opportunities can be accessed only by those with Identity.  This barrier of lack of identity is the basic problem targeted by the Invisibles project.

Additionally, Mr. Aresty is a Fellow at the Center for Information Technology and Dispute Resolution at the University of Massachusetts. His involvement in the Center centers on promoting the use of online dispute resolution technology as an alternative to traditional methods. His ongoing law-technology activities concern (1) e-lawyering training, including ODR and (2) initiating global law reform in online communities.

Among Mr. Aresty’s accomplishments are initiating and directing the “ Computer College” program (1983-1987) that assisted lawyers in bringing computers into law practice and co-founding the ABA’s TECHShow in 1987. He co-edited three books on cross-cultural influence in international business and e-commerce for the ABA, titled “The ABA Guide to International Business Negotiations”. In his position as the Reporter of the ABA’s e-lawyering Task Force (, Mr. Aresty wrote several articles on the technical, legal and practical implications of the practice of law in Cyberspace.

larry bridgesmith

Larry Bridgesmith J.D., is Managing Partner of Accelerate Insite LLC, CEO of LegalAlignment LLC and a practicing lawyer in Nashville, Tennessee. He has been listed as one of America’s Best Lawyers, among the Leading Lawyers for American Businesses and SuperLawyer. Larry is a member of the International Academy of Mediators and a former member of the Dispute Resolution Section Council of the American Bar Association. Larry has practiced in the fields of labor, employment, and dispute resolution for over 40 years and served in management roles for boutique and mid-sized law firms throughout his career. He founded Lipscomb University’s Institute for Conflict Management and served as its inaugural Executive Director. He holds a Six Sigma Green Belt certificate. Larry is an adjunct professor in legal project management, conflict management and mediation at Vanderbilt University School of Law, Belmont University Massey Graduate School of Business, The Nashville School of Law and the Albany Medical School Alden March Institute for Biomedical Ethics. He coordinates the Program on Law and Innovation at Vanderbilt School of Law. In 2013, Larry was awarded the Grayfred Gray Award for Public Service in Mediation by the Coalition for Mediation Awareness in Tennessee. In 2017, he received the Justice Janice Holder Award and the Tennessee Bar Association President's Award for technology innovation in the legal system. His practice in facilitation and training in organizational change management has taken him across the country and around the world. Larry's current interests include legal technology development, access to justice for all and "better, faster and cheaper" innovation in law, education and healthcare.

Isabella Bunn

Dr. Isabella Bunn is a qualified lawyer and Christian ethicist who is also Visiting Professor and Chair of Ethics, Florida Institute of Technology, and vice-chair of the Human Rights Committee of the American Bar Association.

She has recently published a book on The Right to Development and International Economic Law:  Legal and Moral Dimensions. She is working on a number of projects related to global justice and rule of law, interdisciplinary aspects of peace-building, and the human rights responsibilities of business enterprises.

christy leos

Christy Leos is a Writer/Editor with a background in English Literature, social media, digital content creation, and access to justice work for marginalized communities. Her experience ranges from editing short stories, books, and articles to drafting digital content and managing nonprofit marketing and content campaigns. She has a liberal arts degree in English Language and Literature from Rice University. Christy is also grateful she has been given "the chance to work hard at work worth doing." 

Demetrios Eleftheriou

Mr. Eleftheriou is the Director of Global Privacy at Symantec Corporation. In the past, he worked for EMC Corporation as a General Counsel. Before joining EMC Corporation, Mr. Eleftheriou served as Vice President and Senior Counsel in the General Counsel’s Office of American Express in New York. Before moving in-house, he advised diverse clients on complex data protection and e-commerce issues as an attorney with Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP in Washington, DC.

Mr. Eleftheriou has published and presented extensively on global data protection issues around the world. He has over 10 years of experience in the data protection field, and is licensed to practice law in the US and in Europe.

michelle hughes

Michelle Hughes is a human rights lawyer and educator whose work focuses on rule of law, security, and governance in post-conflict countries, fragile states, and states in transition.  She is the Founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer of VALRAC Innovation, LLC, a company dedicated to preparing the next generation to restore and strengthen the rule of law at home and abroad; a Fellow with the Center for Advanced Defense Studies; and a Senior Fellow with the National Defense University Joint Forces Staff College.  Ms. Hughes is also a former U.S. Army Intelligence Officer and combat veteran who was later appointed as a Senior Executive in the U.S. Department of Defense where she was the only designated “Highly Qualified Expert” for Rule of Law and Security Sector Reform. She has field experience in 24 foreign countries, to include 14 active conflicts and a succession of deployments to Afghanistan where her role was to advise Senior Military Commanders on how to connect security force development to governance and justice.  She is a graduate of the University of Florida, Regent University School of Law, and the London School of Economics. Her most recent publication is “Impunity: Countering Illicit Power in War and Transition,” and she is the producer, scriptwriter, and editor of the National Defense University educational web- and podcast series: “Impunity: Beyond the Book.”  

Jacqueline klosek

As a Certified Information Privacy Professional, Ms. Klosek is on the Advisory Board for The Privacy Advisor of the International Association of Privacy Professionals, and is the co-chair of the International Working Group of that organization.

Ms. Klosek serves as Team Leader of Intellectual Property and Technology Law for the Afghanistan Transitional Commercial Law Project, an initiative which seeks to assist Afghanistan in revising its commercial laws. She has also served as a consultant to various Directorate Generals of the European Commission in connection with a number of studies related to various aspects of the information society, including a study on International Private Law and Electronic Commerce, for which she served as the national expert for the United States.

Ms. Klosek is a member of the American Bar Association and is the Vice Chair of the Information Services, Technology & Data Protection Committee of the ABA’s Section of International Law.

Ms. Klosek is the author of the following four books: The Right to Know – Your Guide to Using and Defending Freedom of Information Law in the United States (Praeger Publishing, 2009); The War on Privacy (Praeger Publishing, 2006); The Legal Guide to e-Business (Greenwood Publishing, 2003); and Data Privacy in the Information Age (Greenwood Publishing, 2000). She also contributed to The New Virtual Money by Olivier Hance and Suzanne Dionne-Baltz, and Corporate Legal Departments by Carole Basri.

She is also the author of numerous articles, the most recent of which include: “Viewpoint: National Research Council Report Discusses Possible Future of Privacy Regulation in the United States,” “Case Emphasizes Importance of Providing Clear Notice of Change of Online Terms,” “Banks Need a Disclosure Action Plan,” “Massachusetts Bill: Shifting the Costs of Data Breaches” “The Case For Factoring Data Privacy And Security Considerations Into A Company’s Outsourcing Strategy,” “Privacy in the New Congress: Predictions for 2007.”

While attending law school, Ms. Klosek was the Senior Articles Editor of the Cardozo Journal of International and Comparative Law.

Prior to joining Goodwin Procter, Ms. Klosek was employed as a legal adviser with the IT, E-Commerce and Electronic Financial Services Group in the Brussels office of Deloitte & Touche. She also completed internships with a number of international organizations, including the International Commission of Jurists in Geneva and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Ms. Klosek has also lectured on international intellectual property law and the law of E-Commerce as an adjunct professor at New York University

Ms. Klosek is admitted to practice in New Jersey and New York

In 2004, Ms. Klosek received NJBiz magazine’s “40 Under 40” award, given annually to the top 40 achievers in New Jersey with an established record of leadership who have taken on key decision-making roles at an earlier-than-usual stage in their lives.

Ayo kusamotu

Ayo Kusamotu is one of the managing partners at Kusamotu & Kusamotu.

Mr. Kusamotu attended the University of Lagos where he obtained his LL.B. (Hons) in 1997. He worked with Clarke, Parko & Associates as well as Abdulai Taiwo & Co., (Solicitors) as an Associate before joining the firm. Ayo is a consummate professional with an exceptional eye for detail. He is the brain behind the one-laptop-per-lawyer scheme of the Lagos NBA, a driving force in the One-Laptop-Per-Child program in Nigeria and has also been in the forefront of enhancing Creative Commons awareness in Nigeria.

He was the pioneer chairman of the Information and Communication Technology Committee of the NBA and a Director of the OHADA CLUB OF NIGERIA (Organisation pour l’Harmonisation en Afrique du Droit des Affaires – a system of business laws and implementing institutions adopted by sixteen West and Central African Insitutions). Ayo is also a fellow of the University of Massachusetts, National Center for Information Technology and Dispute Resolution.

hongxia liu

Hongxia Liu is the Associate Vice Chancellor of NYU Shanghai responsible for government and community relations. She is a member of the core leadership team that is collectively responsible for the ongoing development of NYU Shanghai.

Hongxia brings to IBO a combination of professional leadership experiences in government, inter-government organization, nonprofits, and the private sector – in the U.S., China, Australia, Georgia and Italy. Prior to joining NYU Shanghai, she served as Partner-in-Charge of the Beijing office of Heidrick & Struggles, after having previously served as Executive Director of the World Justice Project, Director for the Asia-Pacific of the International Development Law Organization, Director of Legal Research at the Law Library of Congress, and Director of the American Bar Association’s Center for the United Nations Development Programme. She started her career working in the Republic of Georgia as a Program Officer for the Academy of Educational Development.

Hongxia served as President of the Washington Foreign Law Society and is a member of the governing boards of the Meridian International Center and the International Law Institute, among other non-profit organizations.

Hongxia has been honored with the American Bar Association’s World Order Under Law Award, the Beijing Chaoyang Government’s Phoenix Award, and the Peking University Outstanding Alumna Award.

Hongxia holds a bachelors degree from Peking University and a masters degree from NYU. She regards her study at NYU as the gateway to her international career of nearly 20 years.

amelia rea maguire

Amelia “Mel” Rea Maguire is the President/CEO of REA International. She is also the former Senior Executive Director of Management and Development at Florida International University’s College of Business.  She was also a Partner in the law firm of Amelia Rea Maguire, P.A., and Managing Member of business consulting firm REA International LLC, in Coral Gables, Florida. Her practice areas include corporate transactions, corporate governance and regulatory matters, economic development, international trade, securities and finance. Ms. Maguire has over 28 years of business and governmental experience, including 20 years in law practice, with a focus on international trade, economic development, corporate finance, and government relations. Ms. Maguire is former Secretary of the Florida Department of Commerce and former Assistant Secretary for the Florida Economic Development and Tourism Divisions with extensive experience representing the Governor of Florida and serving on governmental commissions in the areas of economic development, trade and land management. As a partner in two global law firms, Ms. Maguire directed large platform client development initiatives and worked extensively with Fortune 500 companies. Ms. Maguire also developed a variety of Client Development Programs as well as the North-South Strategy for multiple professional services firms at a global level. Ms. Maguire has worked with companies in the United States, Canada and Latin America.

She has been active with the American Corporate Counsel Association, ABA Commission on Women in the Profession and its Leadership Academy, Harvard University Kennedy School of Government Women’s Leadership Board. She is is a Fellow of the American Bar Association, serves on the board of trustees, executive committee and chairs legislative committee of Florida State University Foundation, Inc., board of directors of Coast Guard Foundation Inc., and was a member of the Western Hemispheric Summit Executive Committee, the Florida International Affairs Commission, and the Council of the Americas and with The Florida and The Greater Miami Chambers of Commerce.

Ms. Maguire is a graduate of the University of Florida and received her Juris Doctor with honors from Florida State University.

Daniel Rainey

Daniel Rainey is a member of the Board of Directors for the InternetBar.Org, a Fellow of the National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution,   a member of the Board of Directors and Treasurer for the Northern Virginia Mediation Service, and a founding member and founding Board Member of the International Council for Online Dispute Resolution (ICODR).  He is a member of the editorial board for Conflict Resolution Quarterly, and he is one of the Editors-in-Chief of the International Journal of Online Dispute Resolution.  He is an author/editor of the award-winning book, Online Dispute Resolution Theory and Practice, and more than 40 book chapters and articles about ODR and ADR.  He is a member of the Supreme Court of Virginia’s Access to Justice Commission, Self-Represented Litigants Committee, and he has been the co-chair of the International Mediation Institute Task Force on E-Mediator Competencies.  As a member of the Ethics Committee of the Association for Conflict Resolution, he led a review of the ACR/ABA/AAA Model Rules for Mediators, and he participated as a member of the National Center for State Courts ODR Standards Working Group.  In October, 2017, at the Association for Conflict Resolution annual conference, he received the Mary Parker Follett award for innovation in dispute resolution.

james silkenat

James R. Silkenat, a retired partner in the New York office of the national law firm of Sullivan & Worcester and a member of its Corporate Department, is a former President of the 400,000 member American Bar Association.

Silkenat has a long and distinguished record of service at the ABA. Before his election by the ABA House of Delegates last year as the Association’s President-Elect, he was a member of the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession and the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession. He also served as Co-Chair of the ABA Solo and Small Firm Leadership Coalition.

Silkenat also served as Chair of the ABA Section of International Law (receiving its Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007), Chair of the ABA Section Officers Conference, and Chair of the ABA Standing Committees on Membership and Constitution and Bylaws.

Silkenat has been a member of the ABA House of Delegates since 1990. In his role as ABA State Delegate from New York, he was Chair of the body’s New York Delegation from 2000 to 2009. He is a former member of the ABA Board of Governors and its Executive Committee, and is a former national Chair of the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation.

Silkenat is the director and vice president for the World Justice Project. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Law Institute, and served as Chair of the Lawyers Committee for International Human Rights (now Human Rights First). He was also Chair of the Commission on the World Justice Project and of the Council of New York Law Associates (now the Lawyers Alliance for New York). He was a Fellow in the U.S. State Department Scholar/Diplomat Program and a Fellow of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Silkenat is the recipient of the Diversity Champion Award of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

A frequent author and lecturer, Silkenat is the editor or co-editor of 14 books and author of more than 100 articles on legal and justice system issues. His books include The Law of International Insolvencies and Debt Restructurings, The Imperial Presidency and the Consequences of 9/11: Lawyers React to the Global War on Terrorism and The ABA Guide to International Business Negotiations.

In his legal practice at Sullivan & Worcester in New York, Silkenat helps coordinate the firm’s international business practice and concentrates on the areas of project and infrastructure finance, banking, securities law, mergers and acquisitions, and corporate law. He is a former Legal Counsel at the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank Group in Washington, D.C.

Silkenat received his Bachelor of Arts from Drury College, where he received the Distinguished Alumni Award for Career Achievement in 2000 and an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters Degree in 2012. He received his Juris Doctor from the University of Chicago School of Law, where he was an Editor of the University of Chicago Law Review, and his Master of Laws in International Law from New York University School of Law.

Kenneth vacovec

Kenneth J. Vacovec, the founding partner of the firm, practices in all areas of tax law including tax planning for businesses and individuals, estate planning, representation before Internal Revenue Service and state tax authorities, international tax planning for individuals and businesses, international estate planning and tax compliance. Mr. Vacovec has developed the firm’s practice, which includes large publicly held corporations, high net worth individuals and their families, closely held businesses and corporate executives. The firm is also special tax counsel to other law firms and accounting firms by providing specialized tax services to those firms’ clients. Mr. Vacovec graduated from Tufts University (B.A. 1969), Suffolk University Law School (J.D., cum laude, 1975) and Boston University Law School (LL.M. in Taxation, 1976).

Mr. Vacovec is the immediate past President (2002-2004) and currently Trustee (1998 to present) of Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc., and he was recently named by The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court to a three-year term as a member of the Massachusetts IOLTA Committee (2004-2006). Mr. Vacovec was also the Chairman of the Massachusetts Legal Needs Study (2002 to 2004) conducted by Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation that reported on the unmet legal need of low-income citizens of the Commonwealth.

Mr. Vacovec is Vice President, Treasurer and a member of the Board of Directors of the French-American Chamber of Commerce (1994 to present), a member of the International Fiscal Association, United States Branch Counsel (1999 to present) and has served on the Board of Directors of the British American Business Council of New England from 1993-1997.

He was President (2000-2002) and Trustee (1998?2003) of the Massachusetts Bar Foundation, Inc., President (1996-1997) of the Massachusetts Bar Association (President Elect 1995-1996, Vice President 1994-1995, Treasurer 1993-1994, Vice President 1992-1993, Board of Delegates 1990-1993), Tax Section Chair (1988-1990), Law Practice Section Chair (1986-1988) and a member of the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association (1995-2001). Mr. Vacovec is a member of the Boston Bar and American Bar Associations, and is a life Fellow of the Massachusetts Bar Foundation and the American Bar Foundation. Mr. Vacovec is admitted to the Federal Court and the United States Tax Court.

Mr. Vacovec speaks frequently on tax topics, before both business and professional groups. Recent presentations include Trends and Developments in the Europe of the ’90s; The Overseas Taxation Company Limited, London, England (October 1991); Asset Protection in the ’90s, Commonwealth Financing Group, Vista Hotel, Waltham, Massachusetts (September 1992); International Tax Planning for U.S. Citizens and Resident Aliens, Boston Tax Institute, Boston, Massachusetts (bi-yearly, latest 2003); International Corporate Taxation, Boston Tax Institute (bi-yearly, latest June 2004); Divorce Taxation, Massachusetts Association of Public Accountants (yearly, latest 2004); Sub S Corporate Tax, Bentley Tax Institute (January 1996); co-author, Taxation in the United States, International Taxation of Employment Manual, F.T. Law and Tax (UK), 1995; The U.S. Foreign Tax Credit for Corporate Taxpayers, Bulletin for International Fiscal Documentation (September/October 2001); and the United States Reporter to the 56th Congress of the International Fiscal Association on The Tax Treatment of Transfer of Residence by Individuals (Oslo, Norway, 2002), Divorce Taxation Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (Fall 2003), International Estate Planning, Massachusetts Association of Financial Planners (February 2005).

kristina yasuda

Having grown up witnessing differences in quality of life in Japan, where she was raised and Crimea, where her grandparents lived, international development and financial inclusion is at the heart of Kristina's initiatives. In 2016, she became director of an NGO, leading a digital identity project with a goal of building an identity layer of the Internet would lead to increased access to markets in marginalized communities unlocking sleeping capital of BoP. She believes paradigm shift will happen when individuals will learn how to harness their personal data. She has been actively educating about the importance of digital identity, speaking at number of international conferences hosted by UNESCO, UNFCCC, ASEAN, EU, and forums such as the World Justice Forum and KEY Platform. Kristina graduated Summa Cum Laude from Sciences Po Paris majoring in Europe-Asia studies

Linda Seely

Another life change means relocating to the DC area to accept a position with the ABA. Its a new day and a new challenge.

I recently left my position as the director of Pro Bono Projects at Memphis Area Legal Services and manage the Senior Citizens Law and benefits unit. Family and elder law are among my interests along with serving on many bar initiatives such as developing collaborative law procedures, mentoring programs and clinics. I have a variety of different projects that I work on including promotion of mediation and collaborative law process, development of the legal market for BankTennessee and working with A Step Ahead Foundation of West Tennessee (ASAFWT) as the CEO. ASAFWT works to educate, empower and encourage young women about planning their futures and planning their families through the use of long acting reversible birth control.

One of my goals is to transform the way we resolve conflict through using more ADR. I would
Ike to encourage attorneys and law related professionals to be more multi disciplinary and holistic in how they help clients.

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