BUFFALO, N.Y. -- University at Buffalo Law School Dean Makau
Mutua, SUNY Distinguished Professor and Floyd H. and Hilda L. Hurst
Faculty Scholar, was elected vice president of the American Society
of International Law (ASIL) March 26. The ASIL is the most
prestigious and largest organization of international lawyers in
An influential voice on the world stage, Mutua has conducted
numerous human rights, diplomatic and rule-of-law missions in
Africa, Latin America and Europe. He has participated in public
forums in many parts of the world, including Japan, Brazil, France
and Ethiopia. Chairman of the Kenya Human Rights Commission in his
native country, Mutua sits on the boards of several international
organizations. He previously served as director of the Africa
Project at the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights.
The mission of the ASIL is to foster the study of international
law and to promote the establishment and maintenance of
international relations on the basis of law and justice. ASIL is a
nonprofit, nonpartisan, educational membership organization founded
in 1906 and chartered by Congress in 1950. The society holds
Category II Consultative Status to the Economic and Social Council
of the United Nations and is a constituent society of the American
Council of Learned Societies. The society is headquartered at
Tillar House in Washington, D.C.
The society's 4,000 members from nearly 100 nations include
attorneys, academics, corporate counsel, judges, representatives of
governments and nongovernmental organizations, international civil
servants, students and others interested in international law.
Through meetings, publications, information services and outreach
programs, ASIL advances international law scholarship and education
for international law professionals as well as for broader
policy-making audiences and the public.
Mutua is 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.
He is the author of "Human Rights: A Political and Cultural
Critique" (2002); "Kenya's Quest for Democracy: Taming Leviathan
(2008) and Human Rights NGO's in East Africa: Political and
Normative Tensions" (2008). His writings also include scholarly
articles, human rights reports for the United Nations and leading
nongovernmental organizations, and articles for leading
publications including The New York Times, the Boston Globe and The
Washington Post. His expertise and commentary on human rights has
been cited by such prominent media as National Public Radio, the
BBC and "NewsHour with Jim Lehrer."
While on sabbatical in his native Kenya, he was appointed by the
Kenyan government to chair the Task Force on the Establishment of a
Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission. He also was a
delegate to the National Constitutional Conference, the forum that
produced a contested draft constitution for Kenya.
He was educated at the University of Nairobi, Kenya; the
University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and at Harvard Law