Release Date: November 22, 2010
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- University at Buffalo Law School Dean Makau W. Mutua has been chosen by Attorney General-elect Eric T. Schneiderman for his transition committee to help recruit top legal talent to join the attorney general's staff and to provide policy recommendations to improve the lives of New Yorkers.
Mutua, recognized as one of the world's foremost authorities in human rights law and appointed dean of UB's Law School in 2008, will serve on Schneiderman's Infrastructure/Technology/Regional Offices committee.
"My appointment to the AG's Transition Team is recognition of UB Law and the importance that the Western New York legal community plays in the administration of justice in New York," says Mutua. "I am humbled that AG-elect Schneiderman has placed such great faith in me, and I pledge to do all I can to help his august office uphold the rule of law."
A SUNY distinguished professor and Floyd H. and Hilda L. Hurst Faculty Scholar at the Law School, Mutua is former chairman of the Kenyan Task Force on the Establishment of a Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission.
Mutua is the former head the Buffalo Human Rights Center, a research center of the UB Law School. He previously was associate director of the Human Rights Program at Harvard Law School, from which he received a doctor of juridical science degree in 1987. He is a member of the executive council and executive committee of the American Society of International Law, the most prestigious and largest organization of international lawyers in the world.
He was recently elected a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a New York City-based think tank and membership organization that studies major international issues and publishes the influential journal Foreign Policy. Mutua has conducted numerous human rights, diplomatic and rule-of-law missions in Africa, Latin America and Europe.
He is one of 10 members of the Infrastructure/Technology Committee, which is co-chaired by Andrew Rasiej, senior technology adviser for the Sunlight Foundation, and Laura Ross, chief of staff for the Office of New York State Attorney General Robert Abrams.
The Transition Committee is comprised of legal experts and leaders throughout New York and the nation, and reflects a diverse range of legal, academic and professional talent across a wide spectrum of backgrounds.
The committee has been charged with continuing the tradition of legal excellence and innovation for which the Attorney General's office has become nationally known, and assembling an office that is above politics and partisanship.
"As Attorney General, I am deeply committed to continuing the tradition of legal excellence and innovation for which New York's Attorney General's office has become nationally known," says Schneiderman. "I am confident that with the help of this distinguished group of bipartisan leaders -- reflecting a wide spectrum of geographic and cultural diversity -- we will assemble an office above politics and partisanship, that seeks above all to be the best public interest law firm in America."
Since its founding in 1887, the University at Buffalo Law School -- the State University of New York system's only law school -- has established an excellent reputation and is widely regarded as a leader in legal education. Its cutting-edge curriculum provides both a strong theoretical foundation and the practical tools graduates need to succeed in a competitive marketplace, wherever they choose to practice. A special emphasis on interdisciplinary studies, public service and opportunities for hands-on clinical education makes UB Law unique among the nation's premier public law schools.