NYSBA Signs Agreement With Virgin Islands Bar Association Following International Conference in NYC

By David Howard King

NYSBA Signs Agreement With Virgin Islands Bar Association Following International Conference in NYC

6.24.2022

By David Howard King

International Attorneys

The New York State Bar Association signed an agreement with the Virgin Islands Bar Association on Friday that established a framework for joint events and continued collaboration between the two organizations.

The Memorandum of Understanding is the 12th agreement NYSBA has signed with bar associations in just over a year. Overall, the association has signed 21 other pacts, but they have generally been with foreign bar associations.

“The relationship between the U.S. territories and the federal government is a major focus of my presidency,” said Sherry Levin Wallach, president of the New York State Bar Association. “Formalizing this agreement with the Virgin Islands Bar Association will enable the people of the territories to have a louder voice in advocating for their own rights as U.S. citizens. I look forward to the continued collaboration between our two organizations.”

The Memorandum of Understanding was signed in conjunction with the launch of a task force to study the legal rulings that guide the federal government’s relations with the territories.

Alisha Udhwani, president of the Virgin Islands Bar Association, and Levin Wallach gave remarks at the event along with NYSBA International Section Chair Azish Filabi, Nesha Christian-Hendrickson of the Virgin Islands Department of Labor, and Anthony M. Ciolli, past president of the Virgin Islands Bar Association.

The MOU signing capped a week of focus on NYSBA’s International Section, which includes the NYC Summer Conference.

A highlight of the conference was a Ukraine panel discussion that featured lawyers who have firsthand experience with the war. Anna Ogrenchuk, president of NYSBA’s chapter in Ukraine and a leader of the Ukrainian Bar Association, and Ambassador Sergiy Kyslytsya, permanent representative of Ukraine to the United Nations, discussed plans for prosecuting war crimes. The panel also detailed the impact of the international response to the war.

“It’s my mission as chair of the International Section to strengthen the network between lawyers in countries across the world that are committed to the rule of law,” said Professor Azish E. Filabi. Our work with The Ukrainian Bar Association in collaboration with NYSBA’s Ukraine Task Force speaks to the very tangible results of the work we do and the importance of continuing to build this network of legal experts.”

The Virgin Islands Bar Association was created in 1956 to assist the Supreme Court in regulating the practices of law in the Virgin Islands. All attorneys admitted to practice law in the Supreme Court of the Virgin Islands are also required to be members of the Virgin Islands Bar Association. It has some 1,000 members.

About the New York State Bar Association
The New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. Since 1876, NYSBA has helped shape the development of law, educated, and informed the legal profession and the public, and championed the rights of New Yorkers through advocacy and guidance in our communities.

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