On Tuesday 25th October, we were delighted to host a guest lecture by Mr. Robert J. Higdon, Former Assistant United States Attorney for Western and Eastern Districts of North Carolina, and currently Partner in Williams Mullen, Washington. The presentation was delivered in IBCM’s brand new 250+ capacity auditorium.
Mr Higdon delivered a talk on the Rule of Law in a Modern Democratic Society. His fascinating presentation drew on his experience in criminal law, specifically in “white collar” matters, public corruption allegations, campaign finance and election law violations, and his work in Kosovo and the Balkans. Although specifically aimed at Public Administration / Public Service Management students, his talk was attended by, and useful for, all IBCM students.
He clearly explained the role and importance of Rule of Law principles in democracy and market economies. To illustrate his point, Mr Higdon gave several illuminating examples of US cases, including his own personal experience as a prosecutor with the United States Department of Justice. He discussed drug and violent crime cases in Charlotte, North Carolina, referring to the societal and the economic impact of these prosecutions, and public corruption cases around the United States, such as the United States v. Johnny Reid Edwards’s case, United States v. Kent Sorenson case and the legal issues surrounding the U.S. Presidential election. The latter made a great impact on the audience, as they were presented with current and interesting information with respect to the ongoing U.S. Presidential election.
Mr. Higdon also discussed criminal reforms in Kosovo, and highlighted similarities that can be found with issues in the United States. He pointed out that although the legal systems are different, the similarities are rooted in human nature, and if channeled properly it is possible to share information and support each other.
It was a privilege to learn directly from a person with a wealth of fascinating experience and expertise, and we are thankful for Mr. Higdon’s willingness to wholeheartedly share his experience with IBCM students.
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