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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Eric Friedman
(212) 382-6754

Kathryn Inman
(212) 382-6656

Alexander Papachristou Named Executive Director of Cyrus R. Vance Center for International Justice


New York, February 1, 2012 – Alexander Papachristou has joined the Cyrus R. Vance Center for International Justice as Executive Director.

Papachristou previously was president of the Near East Foundation and an investment manager and attorney practicing in Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe. “Alex’s strong global experience and commitment to international human rights make him the ideal person to lead the Vance Center in its next phase of development,” said Samuel W. Seymour, President of the New York City Bar Association.

Papachristou cited as his short-term goals the strengthening of the Vance Center’s international pro bono clearinghouse, which links New York lawyers with pro bono clients throughout the world, and the launching of access-to-justice initiatives that the Vance Center has planned for Latin America and Africa.

“I am thrilled to join the Vance Center at this exciting time in its young but already accomplished life,” said Papachristou. “We have a great deal to do for the people we serve in Latin America, Africa and around the world, and we are fortunate to have such a strong partner in the City Bar and the Vance Center Committee, as well as a growing community of supporters in the corporate world, the foundation sector and in the law firms and nongovernmental organizations at the front lines of the effort to pursue social justice in these regions.”

At the Near East Foundation, Papachristou led the organization’s efforts to promote economic and social development in Africa and the Middle East.  From 1994 to 2007, he served as managing director and general counsel and then senior consultant at NCH Capital, Inc, which runs a series of limited partnerships investing in private equity and public securities in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Romania and Bulgaria.

From 1989 to 1993, Papachristou lived in Russia, where he opened and ran the Moscow office of the law firm White & Case and wrote a column for the Moscow Times. Previously, Mr. Papachristou was associated with the law firm of Clifford & Warnke in Washington, DC and served as policy assistant to New York Governor Mario C. Cuomo. He also was law clerk to U.S. District Judge Myron H. Thompson in the Middle District of Alabama.

Papachristou has served on the boards of several non-profit organizations, including the Media Development Loan Fund and International Social Service (U.S. Branch), as well as the advisory councils of Princeton University’s Near East Studies Program and Bard College’s Institute for International Liberal Education. In late 2011, The New Press published Blind Goddess: A Race and Justice Reader, which Mr. Papachristou edited. He is a graduate of Harvard Law School and Princeton University.


About the Vance Center
The Cyrus R. Vance Center for International Justice of the New York City Bar Association (www.vancecenter.org) seeks to expand access to justice in young democracies and developing economies. The Center works with partners around the world, including law firms, bar associations and law societies, educational institutions, and nongovernmental organizations, building bridges among them so that they can share ideas and collaborate across borders as they strive to promote social justice. In 2008, the Vance Center launched the Pro Bono Declaration of the Americas, a formal commitment to engage in pro bono legal service, to which hundreds of law firms and lawyers in Latin America and the United States have pledged themselves. The Center was founded in 2003 to honor the memory of Cyrus R. Vance, a past president of the New York City Bar Association and former U.S. Secretary of State and gives continuing substance to his conviction that lawyers have an ethical obligation to play an active role in the promotion of peace, democracy, and social justice.