Minutes of the International Committee Meeting

Reported by Paul Biderman

About a dozen people from NASJE and NACM reported on their interests and experiences with foreign judicial organizations during a meeting of the NASJE International Committee at the 2011 NASJE/NACM conference. Milt Nuzum, Director of the Supreme Court of Ohio Judicial College, led the discussion.

After hearing the caution from William Brunson of the National Judicial College that people shouldn’t sign up as international trainers expecting to board the next flight to Paris, the group reviewed training offered to judicial personnel in third world countries and emerging democracies. Interchanges occur both through delegations to the U.S. and through travel abroad by judges, court administrators and judicial educators. Those experienced with the International Organization for Judicial Training discussed the value of associating with that growing organization.

Representatives of two USAID primary contractors, the National Center for State Courts and Tetra Tech DPK, discussed the opportunities that exist through their programs for interchanges abroad. Experienced trainers also described some of the challenges, such as adapting to different expectations about educational techniques, unfamiliar traditions of judicial independence, and varying objectives for the training. Everyone who had participated in international training described the warm relationships built, the enthusiasm and creativity generated, and the enormous amount gained by the trainers as well as trainees from their interchanges.

It was agreed that the rewarding and exciting area of international training can be the subject of future collaborative planning between NASJE and NACM.