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About Allison

I am a Canadian lawyer, specializing in international human rights and humanitarian law. I have just moved back to Geneva after three years working in Colombia, Ethiopia, and then writing a book on my journey from corporate law to the humanitarian world.

I used to be a business lawyer…but facing the impending doom of my 30th birthday I took stock of my life and decided to follow my passion for human rights, social justice, and everything international.

I started this blog while living and working in Bogota, Colombia, through the Canadian Bar Association. I worked with ONIC, the National Organization of Indigenous Peoples of Colombia, consulting on human rights and international humanitarian law issues affecting indigenous persons in Colombia, specifically as a result of the ongoing non-international armed conflict.

Keeping true to my roots as a barrister; I will now outline my purposes for starting this blog, including, but not limited to;

– to ensure my family and friends know I have not in fact fallen off the face of the earth,
– to share my experiences,
– to potentially provide some form of entertainment,
– and most importantly, to raise awareness of various issues related to international law.

I hope you will join me in my journey!

Anything contained in this blog is personal opinion meant for entertainment purposes, nothing herein is meant to be, nor should be taken as legal advice. All opinions are my own and not those of organizations I have worked for.

15 Comments leave one →
  1. Francois Beaulieu permalink
    October 27, 2011 7:11 am

    Allison, I am glad to hear that you made in thru your Masters’ degree and that you are now in Bogota. I am also glad to hear that you have finally found your passion in law.

    What a coincidence, we have good friends from Saint John that are from Bogota.

    Enjoy your stay and your work, François.

  2. Michelle permalink
    January 12, 2012 4:59 pm

    Hi Allison,

    I came across your blog through a friend of mine’s blog. Hannah Bradshaw. She is down in Bogota working on her PhD. Anyways, I am a lawyer licensed in WA state and currently articling in BC. I practice aboriginal law. I used to live/study/work in Bogota and still have strong connections to Colombia. I would love to talk to you about your work down there if you have some time. My email address is mbowlen24 AT gmail DOT com.


    • January 12, 2012 7:37 pm

      Hi Michelle, thanks for the note! I would love to hear about your experiences here, I will send you an email! I’m actually having coffee with Hannah on Monday so I will pass on a “hola” for you! Thanks for reading, Allison

  3. leo permalink
    August 5, 2012 2:30 pm

    Hola allison muy interesante tu blog veo que has estado en el vichada es una tierra maravillosa totalmente abandonada por el estado, actualmente que mas proyectos sociales
    desarronllan me gustria ponerme en contaccto contigo.

  4. leo permalink
    March 27, 2013 9:19 pm

    Hola allison muy interesante tu blog me encantaría ponerme en contacto contigo

  5. Sasha Y. permalink
    February 26, 2014 10:29 pm

    Hi Allison! I’m a first year law student in Chicago and looking to get into international human rights law. I happen to be at a school with a great IHR clinic but a HEAVY current towards corporate. I’m having to really plan my path beforehand due to the crazy legal market and the weight of hefty loans. I’d love to talk to you about your experience transitioning from corporate law and any advice you have on how to be most efficient with career strategy. I’d love to chat with you whenever you have time. My email is sashajoven AT icloud DOT com. Thank you!

    • March 11, 2014 4:19 am

      Hi Sasha, thanks so much for your comment. I hope you are making out okay – first year is rough going but so very worth it! I completely understand your situation, it is very difficult to head directly into HR law without being in a very fortunate financial situation. That said – it is possible you just have to be willing to put the extra work in. If you are really dedicated to human rights and know that you will be able to maintain your passion in the face of the nice salaries/set-up life – then it is very possible to transition (but a long haul). I am so thankful for my time in corporate law, I learned so much, had an amazingly supportive network that is still helping me out even now, and thoroughly enjoyed my practice – it was never that I didn’t like it, but I just knew my life’s work was meant to be something else. I will send you an email now for any specific questions and please keep commenting here as well – I’m sure others can benefit from your queries as well! Congrats again on almost being finished your first year and thanks so much for reading! Allison

  6. May 23, 2015 10:15 pm

    Wow, you sound like an amazing person. I am currently studying international development and you sound like the type of person I want to be when I am finished with my studies. Very inspirational for me. I am happy I stumbled upon your blog. Best wishes in your future endeavours.

  7. Marcus Dominguez permalink
    May 27, 2015 7:19 pm

    My name is Marcus Dominguez and I am a rising senior at Kansas State University. I have spent the past week at the Florida State College of Law, gaining meaningful experience about my goal to go to law school after I graduate and become an International Lawyer. I grew up in Chicago, so I was wondering even more specifically what you do as a lawyer in the city. As part of a project while I am down here, I was hoping that I could take 5-10 minutes of your time in answering five simple questions.

    1. How do you define “international law”?

    2. What does a typical day look like for you?

    3. How did you get started in international law?

    4. Do you get to travel?

    5. How do you communicate with your clients?

    If you would be interested in answering these questions, I would be thrilled to get to talk with you! You can either email me back, or call me at 815-761-6075. These questions can be answered at your convenience. I would also be glad to share any information about myself and my interests, if you have any questions.

    Thank you for your consideration,

    Marcus Dominguez

  8. leonardo permalink
    September 19, 2015 8:19 pm

    Hi allison very interesting your blog I see you’ve been in a wonderful land vichada totally abandoned by the state, now that more social projects
    desarronllan gustria me you get in contaccto

  9. eevee permalink
    June 29, 2016 2:48 pm

    Hi Allison, We need your experiences about international human rights. We had an incident here in Uruguay and we need an expert about human rights. here’s the link of what happened.

  10. eevee permalink
    June 29, 2016 3:28 pm

    Allison we need an international lawyer who is expert on human rights. We had an incident here in Uruguay and we need your expertise and advices.

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