April 10, 2009
Michael Greenwald (’10) leads Afghan delegation to meet Secretary Hillary Clinton and Justice Sandra Day O’Connor
As a member of the Core Committee for the visit of prominent Afghan women judges and attorneys to Washington, D.C., Michael Greenwald (’10) expanded his already vast network with some new, but familiar, faces. In D.C., he met Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. This was all in a day’s work for Greenwald, who was working to help the United States’ mission to strengthen the rule of law in Afghanistan.
The trip to Washington, D.C. was part of the Public-Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan. This initiative is an effort by the State Department's Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs and the American legal community. “The goal of the Partnership is to help the Afghan people establish a fair and transparent justice system that protects the rights of women, children and minorities and that is equally accessible to all citizens,” said Greenwald.
The delegation of Afghan women lawyers and judges visited the United States for a training and empowerment session where the women participated in two weeks of intensive legal seminars, roundtable events and consultations with senior officials. Along with Secretary Clinton and Justice O’Connor, the women also met Afghanistan Ambassador Said T. Jawad.
“All of these women are mothers who risk their lives every day to uphold the Afghanistan legal system,” said Greenwald. “It’s exciting to keep in touch with them…and they are a constant inspiration to me. The legal work of these women will bring real reform and rule of law to the Afghan people. I look forward to playing a role in that process.”
Greenwald, who has been a member of the Partnership since March 2008 under the guidance of former Lt. Governor Kerry Healy, was the delegation's daily manager for the D.C. component of the program. In this role, Greenwald worked with the Partnership’s associates at the State Department, Afghanistan Embassy, Supreme Court and Federal Judicial Center to put together a program that explored various topics. These subjects included the Afghan and American legal systems, legal decision-making and mediation, and family and mental health.
“The most exciting part of the delegation was speaking with the chief judge of the Afghanistan Supreme Court about the challenges of prosecuting Al-Qaeda and the Taliban,” said Greenwald.
Among his many accomplishments, Greenwald is the founder and president of the National Security Law Society at BU Law. He has recently been asked to serve on the LL.M. Sub-Committee for the Public-Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan, where he will assist with LL.M. training programs of Afghan lawyers in U.S. law schools – including BU Law.