International Law

Diversity Fellowship

2021-2023 ABA Section of International Law Diversity Fellowship Application

About the Fellows Program

The ABA Section of International Law Diversity Fellows Program promotes the active involvement and participation of young, diverse lawyers in Section activities. The goal of the Diversity Fellows Program (“Program”) is to give lawyers with diverse backgrounds, as described by ABA Goal III, an opportunity to become involved in Section Committees and programs. The program will run for two years and will serve as a pipeline for developing future diverse Section leaders and will encourage the participation and active involvement of young lawyers of diverse backgrounds in Section activities.

The goal of this program is to give 3-4 young lawyers of diverse backgrounds including lawyers of color, different race and ethnic backgrounds, lawyers with disabilities, and lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender lawyers – LGBT – an opportunity to become involved in the substantive work of the Section, while developing into future leaders.  This is in line with the ABA’s Goal III – to promote full and equal participation in the association, our profession, and the justice system by all persons and to eliminate bias in the legal profession and the justice system.

Once selected as a result of a competitive process, each Fellow will be assigned to work with a substantive Committee and Committee Chair.  The Committee Chair will serve as a mentor and engage the Fellow in all aspects of committee membership, helping the Fellow to get involved in a substantive project, publication, policy or program. The Fellows will also work very closely with the Diversity Officer, the Diversity Committee and the Membership Officer who, together with the relevant Committee Chair, will be responsible for mentoring the Fellows, monitoring their progress and providing periodic reports to the Section’s Administration Committee.  The Diversity Officer will provide the Administration Committee with quarterly reports on the progress of each Fellow and will also submit an Annual Evaluation and Progress Report. During the first year of the Fellowship, which ends August 31, 2022, all activities will be conducted in a virtual format via Zoom video call, email, and phone.  In bar year 2022-2023 funding for Diversity Fellows to attend in-person Section events is contingent on available funding from sponsorship.  If funding is not available, Fellowship will continue in a virtual format. Fellows will be required to sign a Fellowship Agreement with the Section.


Applicant must have practiced law in the international context and/or shown interest in international law (law firm, international organization, government, NGO, university) for at least one year after graduation from law school.

Applicant must be committed to international law issues as covered by the 64 Section substantive committees; must be up to 36 years old or be admitted to a bar for less than 6 years (YLD membership criteria), be a diverse lawyer as defined by the Section and ABA Goal III, and have demonstrated leadership/commitment within other ABA entities or Sections.

If the applicant is not a member of the ABA or the Section, if accepted, the Fellow will be required to become a dues paying member of the ABA and the Section. Fellows will have to produce specific deliverables during their fellowship and report on them on a quarterly and annual basis (policies, programs, publications, projects).

Fellows’ Responsibilities

  • Active Committee participation as required by the Section for all Section Leaders.
  • Fellows must meaningfully contribute to their assigned substantive Committee by producing publications, actively working on programs, policies and projects and become actively engaged within the Committee by participating on calls of the Committee leadership.
  • Fellows must keep regular communication with their Committee Chair, the Diversity Officer and any other assigned mentor from the Section to identify leadership opportunities in an ongoing basis and produce a work-plan.
  • Fellows must complete and return a post-meeting report that outlines the Fellow’s involvement in these Section events, what was achieved and any deliverables produced.
  • Fellows must submit to the Diversity Officer and the Section’s Administration Committee a quarterly progress report on the work-plan of their Fellowship.


You must submit your full application addressing all the questions below, and include a cover letter and two letters of recommendation no later than April 30, 2021. Please submit your full application package to Angela Benson:

Diversity Fellowship Application Form