Another senior Belizean jurist has been chosen to serve as a judge on an international tribunal. Lisa Shoman has been selected to serve as one of the 7 judges on the Inter-American Development Bank's Administrative Tribunal.
It's a panel set up to settle disputes which arise out of the employment relationship with the Bank, or the corporation with their staff members. The seven judges are chosen from candidates who are from member countries, but no 2 judges can come from the same country.
They are selected and recognized for professional competence and integrity, and they must have the necessary qualifications to sit as judges in the highest judicial courts in their own respective countries.
Shoman submitted her applications and credentials, and she was chosen to serve. She granted us an interview this evening to discuss this new opportunity for her career. Here's what she told us:
Lisa Shoman - Appointed as an IDB Judge
"Last year I became aware that the Inter-American Development Bank was looking for adjudicators for their administrative tribunal, they refer to their adjudicators as judges. So this is an arbitral panel that is composed of 7 judges from member countries of the Inter-American Development Bank. You can't be an employee at the bank, you can't be an employee of any member of the bank which obviously would include Belize, but other than that they were seeking 2 adjudicators, 2 judges to serve for a 6 year period starting the 1st of July 2017. The requirements are that you have at least 15 years of legal service in your country. There is not one particular judicial system that they follow but they like to have a mix of common law and civil judges."
"So I was encouraged to apply and I did and I made the short list and then there after the short short list, went up for an interview and on Monday I was notified that the board had approved my appointment. So, I will be one of the arbitral panel of judges."
"The qualifications call for you to be qualified to hold high judicial office in your own country. So, it's quite an honor for me to be considered among all of the applicants in the Americas for this post. People who are on this panel of the caliber of Madam Justice as Desiree Bernard, who has been a CCJ judge for some time. So as you can see it's quite an honor and I'm told, I'm the first Belizean to have been chosen for such a panel."
"I've been looking forward to this for some time. I in fact have always taught that judicial service would have been one of the things that I wanted to do. If you are an attorney, judicial service for many of us is the capstone of our career. So, this is something that I am very much looking forward to and who knows where it leads me from here."
The IDB's Administrative Tribunal conducts its business in the same way that other high courts arbitrate disputes.