Advisory Boards & Board of Directors


Connie Smead Fellowship


Non-Profit Status



Advisory Board

Sherman Cohn

Sherman Cohn is a Professor of Law at Georgetown University, a position he has held since 1965.  He received the 2007 Paul Dean Award and the 2002 Faculty of the Year Award from the Georgetown University Law Center, as well as a Presidential Citation from the Alumni Association.  His courses include Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Conflict of Laws, Equity, Federal Courts & Federal System, Federal‑State Relations, Professional Responsibility, Jurisprudence and Evolving Law, Alternative Models of Justice, Judaic Sources of American Law, American Inn of Court, Alternative & Complementary Evidence: the Legal Issues.

Professor Cohn also taught at American University School of Law and Catholic University School of Law. He received his B.A. from in 1954, his J.D. in 1957, and his L.L.M. in 1960, all from Georgetown.  He received an honorary LL.D. from John Marshall Law School, and an honorary M.Ac. from Tai Sophia Institute.  He is a member of the District of Columbia, Virginia (retired), and Maryland bars.

Professor Cohn is the author of dozens of legal works, including the books “Current Materials in Civil Procedure” and “Civil Procedure:  Our Common‑Law Background.”  He has lectured across the globe on the U.S. legal system, such as at Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel, Manchester University, England; Muenster University, Germany (Fulbright grant), and at Tambov State University, Russia (Fulbright grant).

For 11 years, Professor Cohn was President of the American Inns of Court Foundation.  He served on the American Bar Association’s Reading Team for U.S. Supreme Court Nominees Kagan, Sotomayor, Alito, and Miers.  For 10 years, he served as Chairman of the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine.  Since 1989, he has been Director of the Council for Court Excellence.  He is also current Director of the Jewish Council for the Aging.  Professor Cohn is on the Advisory Board of the Human Rights Law Foundation.

Prior to his work at Georgetown, Professor Cohn served as Assistant Chief of the Appellate Section, Civil Division, U.S. Department of Justice.  He also clerked for Judge Charles Fahy, U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit.

David Matas

David Matas is the Co-chair of the International Coalition Against Torture and Senior Legal Counsel of Amnesty International Canada and B’nai Brith Canada In 1969, he became a Middle Temple United Kingdom Barrister, and he was called to Bar of Manitoba in 1971. Mr. Matas was special assistant to the Solicitor General of Canada in 1971-1972. He has also served as a member of the Canadian delegation to the United Nations Conference on an International Criminal Court 1998, the Canadian Delegation to the Stockholm International Forum on the Holocaust, and since 1997 as the Director of the International Centre for Human Rights & Democratic Development. Mr. Matas has also taught constitutional law at McGill University, and Introductory Economics, Canadian Economic Problems, International Law, Civil Liberties, and Immigration & Refugee Law at the University of Manitoba.

Board of Directors

Perry Link

Perry Link is Chancellorial Chair Professor for Innovative Teaching Comparative Literature & Foreign Languages in the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences at University of California, Riverside.  He is also Emeritus Professor of East Asian Studies at Princeton University, and former Associate Director of Princeton in Beijing. He received his B.A. from Harvard in 1966 and his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1976.

Link is known as one of the West’s best experts on China, its language, culture and people. While at Princeton, he edited the “Tiananmen Papers” with Columbia University’s Andrew Nathan, a collection of documents leaked by a high-level Chinese official that helped chronicle the events that led up to and followed the pro-reform student protests in June 1989.

His publications are voluminous and include the best study abroad language instruction program in China. Professor link’s the “The Tiananmen Papers” (published in January by Public Affairs Press in New York) provide a first-time look behind the scenes at Chinese government decision making. Professor Link’s stature as a China expert is especially evident from the wide range of article he has published. These include, On Leaving a Chinese Prison, April 11, 2002, and Legacy of a Maoist Injustice, July 18, 2007.  Mr. Link is also the author of many books, including: “The Uses of Literature: Life in the Socialist Chinese Literary System” (2000); “Pan Yang Sui Pi” (1999); “Evening Chats in Beijing = [pei-Ching Yeh Hua]: Probing China’s Predicament” (1992); “Mandarin Ducks and Butterflies: Popular Fiction in Early Twentieth Century Chinese Cities” (1981).  Link recently concluded editing a festschrift for former Princeton colleague and distinguished Sinologist F.W. Mote titled “The Scholar’s Mind: Essays in Honor of F.W. Mote.” He also has been working on a book on the rhythm, metaphor and politics of contemporary Chinese language.  Professor Link has served on the Board of Advisors of Beijing Spring, a monthly Chinese-language magazine dedicated to the promotion of human rights, democracy, and social justice in China.

Mary Byrom

Mary Byrom is a classically trained international award winning designer and fine artist. She has won awards for sculpture, package design and painting. Since 2000 she has collaborated with international human rights groups and designed and directed large multi dimensional performance pieces to raise awareness of torture and persecution suffered by Falun Gong practitioners in China. In 2003 she curated an international show of paintings by and for artists who were victims of torture. In 2005 she traveled to Sweden to guide and train representatives from 14 countries on presenting fine arts shows for raising awareness of human rights. She has a background of involvement in regional, state and national nonprofit cultural and arts organizations, grant writing and project coordination. She is a popular children’s illustrator and American landscape painter.

Owen Daka

Owen Daka is a lawyer from S. Africa who has worked on several high profile human rights cases for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. As a well know human rights attorney with an international reputation, he has handled many landmark human rights cases, including a landmark case filed in S. Africa against a high ranking Chinese official for her role in the persecution of Falun Gong.

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