| Link                                                                                  September 24, 2014




This week we focus on Arizona Law's growing global presence by introducing the new co-director of our International Trade and Business Law Program, Professor Sergio Puig, and featuring LLM candidate Miriam Matinda and JD/LLM candidate Yahya YŁksel.


Until the footnotes,




Sergio Puig 


Sergio and Negar 

Sergio Puig comes to Arizona Law from Stanford Law School. He teaches in the area of international economic law, including international trade and investment law, international arbitration, and transnational litigation. He joins Professor David Gantz as the co-director of the International Trade and Business Law Program.


The program they lead is both deep and broad. Students in the JD and specialty LLM, MLS, and SJD programs are drawn from around the country and the world. They come to learn from the cutting-edge scholarship of Professor Boris Kozolchyk in trade and commercial law, and to work on projects at the National Law Center on Inter-American Free Trade. They come to study commercial law with Professor Marek Dubovec, and international trade and business law with regular and practice-based faculty.


Sergio brings a wealth of experience in both the teaching and practice of law. Before joining us, he taught international investment law and international trade law at Duke Law and Stanford Law School. In his prior position at Stanford, Sergio also directed a masters program for lawyers with interests in pursuing interdisciplinary legal scholarship.


Sergio also worked for over three years in the young professionals program for lawyers at the World Bank Group and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes, and has practiced at Von Wobeser & Sierra in Mexico City, where he is from, and Miller & Chevalier in Washington, DC.

"I decided to come to Arizona to be involved with its excellent program in International Trade and Business Law. Professor Gantz has been a pioneer in the field and has placed Tucson on the map of international trade and economic law. With the recent developments at the College, I believe we can serve as an important hub for understanding the legal aspects of globalization and the new forms of global trade. In my research and writing, I focus on how regional trade agreements are becoming the main alternative to global negotiations and are adapting to the ways commerce, innovation, intellectual property and logistics are transforming international trade. As I like to put it, long gone are the days where trade was limited to England and Portugal trading wool and wine. I am happy to have the opportunity to cement Tucson as the place to study how regional trade agreements are transforming the world." 


Sergio got more than great practice experience in DC:  he met his wife, Negar Katirai, who directs the new Public Interest Law Group initiative at the law school.  Sergio and Negar are enjoying their first experience living in the Southwest and exploring the art and music scene.  They are particular fans of the Rialto Theatre and the music offerings at the Hotel Congress, especially the gypsy jazz trio that plays on Sundays. 


Water Polo at the UA Rec Center

Both Sergio and his wife have found something familiar in Tucson as Sergio was born and raised in Mexico City and Negar was born in Iran. They both enjoy the unique border culture of the city and are consulting with Negar's father (who is from Shiraz) about the various (I hope non-invasive!) plants that will thrive in the mid-altitude desert climate. 


Sergio and his wife are also looking forward to becoming parents in late November. As I see it, the College of Law got two great professors, and a future law student...


In his spare time Sergio enjoys hiking and playing water polo. He is particularly happy to be playing outdoors with the University's club and masters teams.


"I think water polo is the second best way to exercise. It is fun, intense, and if you don't play with sharks, generally fair. Being in the water up to your neck is especially refreshing on hot days. The only thing better is surfing without sharks."


Miriam Matinda ('15)

From Tanzania, Miriam Matinda joins the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy LLM Program. She received her bachelor's degree in Law from the University Dar-es-salaam, a postgraduate diploma in legal practice from the Law School of Tanzania, and is currently licensed to practice law in Tanzania.


Before joining Arizona Law, Miriam worked with the East African Law Society Secretariat and Advocates Without Borders (ASF). She helped managed a project involving human rights advocates in five countries: Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. 


Prior to that, she worked with the Legal and Human Rights Center (LHRC), the leading human rights organization in Tanzania, where she was in charge of the gender and family desk. She provided legal assistance to indigent women and children across a wide range of areas including probate, child rights, divorce, and custody of children.


Miriam envisions working on issues at the intersection of human rights and business.


"My career goal is to be able to assist communities and multinational companies operating in Africa reach win-win solutions in the myriad of challenges facing them both. I also have a dream of working with the African Court of Human and Peoples Rights based in my home town, Arusha. I would be humbled and proud to be associated with this institution, which is a hallmark of Africa's long walk to promoting justice in the continent."

Her children,
Eben and Nase


She is the proud mother of two children, Eben (6 years old) and Nase (2 years old), who are with her during her course of study. Eben goes to Drachman Montessori magnet school and Nase attends Imagination Tree day care. The two have been bursting with energy as they explore the Tucson community and all its treasures.


When she isn't tackling international issues or studying, Miriam loves to engage with people from different cultures, watch movies and documentaries, go swimming, travel to new places, and read a good book.

Yahya YŁksel ('15)


Arizona Law endeavors to break down barriers in the study of the law. On the forefront of this mission is Yahya YŁksel.


Yahya is a Persian-Turkish-American, born and raised in Tucson, who is currently studying law in China at Tsinghua University. This year, his third year, he enrolled as a LLM student studying Chinese Corporate Law with a Certificate in International Arbitration and Dispute Settlement.


Tsinghua University is known nationally and internationally as one of the top universities in China. Yahya is able to use his experience there with his core international business training he received from Arizona Law. He will return to the US and graduate with his JD in the centennial class of 2015. 


Due to his academic standing and demonstrated interest in international law, the Chinese government provided him with a tuition scholarship, monthly stipend, and free room and board.


Representing Arizona Law in China


Yahya loves the Tsinghua campus, remarking on its beautiful artwork and sculptures, exceptional gym, and low-cost but abundant sources of food. 


Most importantly, he wrote, "Believe it or not China also has American football! I was recruited to join Tsinghua's flag football team, and we won the first game of the season against another university."


At Tsinghua, he is taking international arbitration and transaction classes, taught by renowned practitioners like former Arizona Law Professor of Practice Gary Born, and Randell Rader, former Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. 


His fellow students come from all walks of life and from around the globe -- Tucson joins Cambridge joins Georgetown joins Palo Alto. Practicing lawyers from top international law firms in Hong Kong and London are also studying in the LLM program because of the high demand for Chinese law expertise.


Yahya with the winning flag football team

Yahya's international focus began long before applying to law school. In fact, he is the youngest-ever chairman of the City of Tucson Human Relations Commission, where he led community efforts to increase religious, racial, and marital tolerance. He also participated in a field study on the progress of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDG) in the Bahamas, Trinidad, Costa Rica, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, and Belize.


Before moving to China, he was a law clerk at Lewis Roca Rothgerber, participated in the Entrepreneurship Program at Eller Business School, and assisted Professor Leslye Obiora on International Public Policy projects, World Bank Grant proposals, and a Central Bank of Nigeria consulting proposal.


Yahya says "Arizona Law runs in my blood." His father, Edip YŁksel ('89) and his aunt, Naghmeh Bashar ('90) are both ardent Arizona Law Alums!


Learn more and connect with Yahya



2014 Recent Graduate Arizona Law Fellows


This week we shine a spotlight on the many ways that Arizona Law is transcending national and academic boundaries. I want to offer a separate and special thanks to the recent alumni who have joined our educational mission as Arizona Law Fellows with a donation of $500 or more. The recent graduates are building connections that last a lifetime, while supporting our efforts to have an impact from the four corners of Arizona to the four corners of the globe. 


Alison S. and Benjamin Bachus

Brian J. and Jennifer R. Cosper

Darcy D. Elgin

Jessica E. Feingold

Chris L. Hering

Rory J. Juneman

Carlene Y. Lowry

Scott D. McDonald

Christina Noz

Ryan S. and Nicole Patterson

Angela L. Perez

Jill H. Perrella

Elizabeth N. Rollings


Gabe Galanda

Congratulations to Gabriel Galanda ('00), who received the Washington State Bar Association's 2014 Excellence in Diversity Award, in recognition of his leadership in advocating for religious rights for Native American prisoners and indigenous peoples. Gabe has built an extraordinary practice and continues to mentor (and hire!) Arizona Law students.




Congratulations to Judge James L. Conlogue ('86), Presiding Judge of the Superior Court in Cochise County his recent recognition as the 2014 Arizona Capitol Times Leader Of The Year in Public Policy For Public Safety.




Coming soon!

Join Us - "The Mind & the Law" Lecture Series: And If Your Friends Jumped Off a Bridge, Would You Do It? Translating Juvenile Developmental Neuroscience into Law

Wednesday, October 1, 2014
7 pm
Ares Auditorium (Room 164)

Professor Amanda Pustilnik of the University of Maryland will  explore what contemporary developmental neuroscience is teaching us about the specific, legally relevant differences between adolescents and adults.

No RSVP required.

Future dates in the series: October 22, November 5, November 19, and December 3. Click here to learn more

* * *

SAVE THE DATE - Centennial Homecoming Weekend

November 7-9, 2014
For more information, visit our Homecoming 2014 website.
For assistance with hotels or game tickets,
please contact the alumni office.

* * *

Alison Bachus ('05) [left], Jessica Post ('05) [right], and their partners
at the Maricopa County Bar Association Hall of Fame Centennial Dinner



Our international enterprise comes from our inherent curiosity and aspiration to connect diverse groups and explore transnational issues. Whether we are bringing Arizona Law to Mongolia or Hong Kong or Shanghai or Quindao -- where I'm off to next week to visit existing and potential global partners, open employment opportunities for our students with an interest in global practice, and participate in a rule-of-law initiative -- or Maricopa County, we try to influence the legal community, and the larger social order, one professor, one student, and one alum at a time.




Marc Signature

Marc L. Miller

Dean & Ralph W. Bilby Professor of Law
James E. Rogers College of Law

Looking for a way to make an impact?
Make a donation to our student scholarship fund. Every dollar invested produces a solid return and helps to alleviate the burden of educational debt for a student.

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