International Scholars to Memorialize Late Law Professor Jon Van Dyke

January 30, 2013

A three-day symposium, "He Haliʻa Aloha No Jon – Memories of “Aloha for Jon,"  will honor and memorialize the life and work of the late Hawai‘i Law Professor Jon M. Van Dyke, and will bring to Hawai‘i a prestigious line-up of international scholars and experts on the Law of the Sea, as well as on international environmental and nuclear law, sea level change, and human rights.

The symposium opens Wednesday, January 30, with an evening reception at the Hawai‘i Supreme Court, and runs through Friday, February 1.  It is free and open to the public and includes continental breakfast and lunch. Register online at: http://blog.hawaii.edu/lawreview/symposium/rsvp/. Registration will help to ensure adequate quantities of programs and meals.

To honor the work of Professor Van Dyke, the symposium will bring together scholars from around the world, particularly from areas where Van Dyke’s influence was directly felt such as China, Korea, Japan, Turkey, Guam, Palau, and the United States. Outstanding faculty members from the host institution where Van Dyke taught for 35 years – the William S. Richardson School of Law (WSRSL)– will participate on the eight cutting-edge panels dealing with challenging global issues.

“Jon Van Dyke is truly irreplaceable as a scholar, teacher, mentor, lawyer, and colleague and we miss
him terribly,” said Dean Avi Soifer of the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. “Nonetheless, this conference highlights the extraordinary breadth of his accomplishments and the real difference he made across the globe."

Attorney Sherry Broder, director of the newly-formed Jon Van Dyke Institute of International Law and Justice, and the widow of Professor Van Dyke, has been a leader of the symposium advisory committee.

Professor Broder notes that bringing together scholars of this caliber to reflect on and discuss issues of global significance is an important way to carry on her husband’s work.

“Jon never stopped working on issues that touch us all,” said Broder. “With this institute in his name, these areas of concern will remain at the forefront of action and help inspire others to move forward.”

Van Dyke died of a heart attack in November 2011, at the age of 68. He was an internationally recognized legal scholar and lawyer dealing with Native Hawaiian and human rights, environmental, ocean, constitutional and international law. Deeply compassionate, Van Dyke spent a lifetime fighting for the underdog and breaking new legal ground in his battles for justice and equality.

The symposium’s principal sponsor is the Korean Institute of Ocean Science and Technology (KIOST)
along with the WSRSL, the University of Hawaiʻi Law Review, and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. Supporting sponsors include: Carlsmith Ball LLP; the East-West Center; the Hawai‘i State Bar Association, International Law Section; UH School of Pacific and Asian Studies; UH Center for Korean Studies; the WSRSL Alumni Association and the WSRSL Law School Student Bar Association.

Hawaiʻi Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald and Dean Soifer will offer opening remarks.     

The first of three keynote conference addresses will be given at 7 p.m. on January 30 during the opening dinner reception at the Hawai‘i Supreme Court Building by Harry N. Scheiber, the Riesenfeld Professor of Law & History and Co-Director of the Law of the Sea Institute at the University of California Berkeley Law School, in tandem with Jane Scheiber, Research Associate, Center for Law and Society, Berkeley Law School. Their remarks are entitled: “Military Government, Internal Security, and the Constitution: Hawaiʻi Under Martial Law.”

A second keynote address, entitled “The Legacy of Jon Van Dyke in Legal Scholarship,” will be given at 1:15 p.m. February 1 in the Moot Court Room at the WSRSL by David Caron, Professor of Law and Co-Chair of the Miller Institute for Global Challenges and the Law at Berkeley Law School.

The third keynote address took place on January 14, two weeks before the symposium, in cooperation with the WSRSL’s January-Term seminars offered by visiting scholars.  Jerome Cohen, Professor and Director of the U.S.-Asia Law Institute at New York University Law School, reflected on recent human rights cases in his presentation, “A New Era for Chinese Justice, Reflections on the BoXilai and Chen Guangcheng Cases.” His talk was recorded and will be available electronically on the Law School’s Law Review Website at www.hawaii.edu/lawreview/symposium The website also offers additional information about the symposium.

The eight conference panels include:

Panel 1 – East Asian Seas –

    Conflicts, Strategies for Peaceful Resolutions and Accomplishments

Panel 2 – International Environmental and Nuclear Law

Panel 3 – Climate Change and Sea Level Rise

Panel 4 – Emerging International Regimes to Control Environmental Impacts

Panel 5 – Protecting the Ocean and Its Resources

Panel 6 – Human Rights in Asia

Panel 7 – Utilizing Indigenous Tradition and Custom in Decision-Making

Panel 8 – International Law and the Development of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

(For interviews press may contact Andrea Maglasang at andream@hawaii.edu or (808) 255-5566)

Press Release