Executive Committee

The Executive Committee is comprised of experienced arbitration practitioners, including those who act as arbitrators. Members of the Executive Committee coordinate the activities of RAI within their respective jurisdictions.

RAI Founding Co-Chairs

Ana Gerdau de Borja Mercereau

Ana Gerdau de Borja Mercereau Ana Gerdau de Borja Mercereau is a senior associate at Derains & Gharavi (Paris) with over 12 years’ experience in international and domestic arbitration. She has acted as counsel and secretary to arbitral tribunals in commercial and investor-State arbitrations under the ICSID, the ICC, the LCIA-MIAC, and the ICDR/AAA rules, and under Brazilian institutions’ rules (CAM-CCBC, CCMA CIESP/FIESP, CAMARB, Câmara FGV, CAM-BM&FBOVESPA, AMCHAM-Brazil and CMA from São Paulo’s Instituto de Engenharia). Her cases have included commercial transactions, joint ventures, large infrastructure projects (in construction, renewable energy, oil & gas and transportation), M&A deals, and projects in real estate and for mining research and exploration.

She is a member of the ICC Commission on International Arbitration and ADR, upon nomination of the Brazilian Committee, and of its Task Force entitled “Corruption in International Arbitration.” Ana is one of the founders of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative and co-chair of its Executive Committee, a CIArb European Branch YMG Representative, a member of CIArb YMG Global Steering Committee and of Delos’ Long View Steering Committee. She was the recipient of one of the 14 “Women in Law Award, Latin America” for Brazil in 2014.

Ana holds a Ph.D. and an LL.M. (International Law) from the University of Cambridge and speaks French, English, Portuguese (native language) and Spanish

She is admitted to the Bars of Brazil (São Paulo) and Portugal (Porto) and is registered with the Paris Bar (Directive 98/5/EC).

Alexander G. Leventhal

Alexander G. LeventhalAlexander G. Leventhal is Of Counsel in Quinn Emanuel’s Paris office. In addition to being one of the founders of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative, Alexander acts as Chair for Continental Europe of Young ITA (the young members group of the Institute for Transnational Arbitration) as well as CIArb (Chartered Institute of Arbitrators) YMG (Young Member Group)’s Steering Committee Member for France. Alexander writes and speaks frequently on topics of arbitration in English, French, Portuguese, and Arabic and guided a team that prepared a submission to UNCITRAL Working Group III on behalf of the European Federation for International Law and Arbitration (EFILA). Alexander was also appointed to act as an Officer on the International Bar Association’s Mediation Committee and the Rules Committee of the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (CPR), which revised CPR’s Fast Track Rules.

Rocío Digón

Digon RocioRocío Digón is a legal consultant for White & Case and a research associate at Leicester Law School. Based in Rome, Rocío has experience as counsel in commercial and investment treaty arbitration under the rules of leading arbitral institutions, including ICSID, ICC and ICDR/AAA and has acted as sole arbitrator under the rules of the CAM. Rocío’s research at Leicester Law School is part of a project investigating the social and psychological underpinnings of commercial arbitration in Europe. Prior to joining White & Case, she was an Associate Research Scholar at Yale Law School and previously spent three years as the first Managing Director and Counsel of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, SICANA, Inc., where she was responsible for administering cases for the North America region and directing SICANA’s promotional activities. Rocío writes and speaks frequently on topics in international and commercial arbitration. Rocío is also a co-founder of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative.

Rocío holds a J.D. from Yale Law School and an LL.M. from Leiden University in Public International Law. She speaks English, French, Spanish and Italian and is admitted to practice in Massachusetts and New York.

Other Members

Crina Baltag

Crina BaltagCrina Baltag is Senior Lecturer in International Arbitration at Stockholm University and qualified attorney-at-law since 2004, with extensive practice on various aspects on international dispute resolution, private and public international law. Crina is in charge of Publications at the Rising Arbitrators Initiative.

Crina’s publications include The Energy Charter Treaty: The Notion of Investor [Wolters Kluwer, 2012]; ICSID Convention after 50 Years: Unsettled Issues [Wolters Kluwer, 2017]; The Future of Investment Treaty Arbitration in the EU [co-editor, Wolters Kluwer, 2020] etc. and numerous publications in leading legal journals and reviews, including on the Denial of Benefits in Investment Law [co-author; Max Planck Encyclopaedia of International Procedural Law , Oxford University Press, 2019]. Crina is member of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce Arbitration Institute (SCC) Board. Crina is the editor of Kluwer Arbitration Blog, co-managing editor of ITA Arbitration Report and member of editorial boards of prestigious journals in the field, including of the Journal of International Arbitration. Crina has been appointed in numerous arbitrations, as sole arbitrator and co-arbitrator under the rules of the ICC, LCIA, SIAC, and CCIR-Romania.

Crina holds a PhD degree in International Arbitration from Queen Mary University of London (UK), LL.M in International Commercial Arbitration Law from Stockholm University (Sweden), M.Sc. in International Business from Academy of Economic Studies (Romania), LL.B. from University of Bucharest (Romania).

Flavia Foz Mange

Flavia Foz MangeFlavia Foz Mange is a Partner at Mange & Gabbay, São Paulo, Brazil. She handles litigation before Arbitral Tribunals, Courts and Administrative Bodies and acts as arbitrator. She represented clients in domestic and international arbitration handled in English or Portuguese under different arbitration rules. She also acted as solo arbitrator, co-arbitrator and presiding arbitrator under different arbitration rules, by means of example, her experience as arbitrator includes cases administered by ICC, CAM-CCBC and AMCHAM. Before founding Mange & Gabbay, she worked in the litigation and arbitration practice from well-known law firms in São Paulo, Brazil.

She has in-house experience as Latin America litigation manager at Hewlett-Packard. She was a foreign trainee at Shearman & Sterling and Freshfields Bruckhaus international arbitration group in Paris, France. Ms. Mange has a masters’ and a doctors’ degree international law from the University of Sao Paulo (USP) and an LL.M in International Legal Studies from the New York University (NYU). She was visiting researcher at Harvard Law School (HLS) and a guest lecturer at Trinity College Dublin. She is a Professor at UNESP Master of Law Program as well as in several post-graduate courses. She published the following books: “Processo Arbitral Transnacional” and “Medidas de Urgência nos Litígios Comerciais Internacionais”. She is editor-in-chief of the Brazilian Arbitration Review, secretary of the ICC Brazil Arbitration and Mediation Commission and was ICC YAF Representative (2017-2019).

She integrates the roster of arbitrators of the most prestigious arbitral institutions in Brazil. Listed in Who’s Who Future Leaders in Arbitration (2017, 2018, 2019, 2020); Leaders League in Arbitration and Litigation (2017, 2018, 2019) and Analise Advocacia in Arbitration (2019). She is fluent in Portuguese, English and German, and good knowledge of Spanish.

Flavia is responsible for the Memberships at the Rising Arbitrators Initiative.

Joanne Lau

Joanne LauJoanne Lau is a Partner in Allen & Overy’s Global Arbitration Group based in Hong Kong. She represents clients in both international commercial arbitrations and investment treaty arbitrations, including as an advocate. She has extensive experience acting in arbitrations under major institutional rules, including HKIAC, ICC, SIAC and UNCITRAL Rules, involving various jurisdictions such as Hong Kong, England, India, Singapore and, in particular, the PRC. She also regularly advises on arbitration-related court matters. She has experience in a range of complex cross-border disputes, including disputes relating to post-M&A matters, joint ventures, private equity, complex financial products and disputes in the energy and infrastructure sectors. Joanne publishes and speaks regularly on arbitration-related topics. Joanne is in charge of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative's Partnerships.

Kabir Duggal

Kabir DuggalKabir Duggal is a Senior International Arbitration Advisor in Arnold and Porter's New York office focusing on international investment arbitration, international commercial arbitration, and public international law matters, serving both as arbitrator and counsel. Kabir is a Lecturer-in-Law at Columbia Law School, teaching "International Investment Law and Arbitration." He is also a Course Director and Faculty Member for the Columbia Law School-Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Comprehensive Course on International Arbitration. He also acts as a Consultant for the United Nations Office of the High Representative for Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (UN-OHRLLS).

He has published over 40 articles and has spoken at over 300 arbitration events all over the world. He has won several accolades for his work including being listed as a top 10 arbitrator by the Bali International Arbitration and Mediation Center (BIAMC). He is a graduate of the University of Mumbai (Gold Medal), University of Oxford (DHL-Times of India Scholar), NYU School of Law (Hauser Global Scholar), Leiden Law School (2018 CEPANI Academic Prize), and is currently pursuing an SJD Degree from Harvard Law School.

Kabir is in charge of the Support Network of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative.

Montserrat Manzano

Montserrat ManzanoMontserrat Manzano is a Partner of Von Wobeser y Sierra, S.C. with more than 18 years of experience including her expertise in dispute resolution. She has participated in more than 60 arbitrations as party attorney, secretary and/or arbitral tribunal assistant, in arbitrations conducted under the rules of the ICC, AAA, UNCITRAL, PCA, ICSID, complementary mechanism of ICSID and CAM. She has solid experience in dispute resolution related to administrative law, public procurement and government contracting. Furthermore, she has participated in both commercial and investment arbitrations, in various sectors including the following: energy, construction, port, shipping and chemical involving both Mexican and foreign applicable law.

Montserrat has been recognized by various leading international editorials including: Global Arbitration Review 100 (GAR 100), Who´s Who Legal Mexico, Who´s Who Arbitration, Who´s Who Legal Arbitration Future Leaders.

Montserrat is a member of the Events team of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative.

Nhu-Hoang Tran Thang

Nhu-Hoang Tran ThangNhu-Hoang Tran Thang is a French trained lawyer registered with the Paris bar and a Swiss national with Vietnamese roots. She practices international arbitration, covering both investment and commercial arbitration.

She has acted as arbitrator, counsel or assistant to the arbitral tribunal in over thirty arbitrations conducted under various rules (ICSID, ICC, UNCITRAL, SCC, SCAI, LCIA, CRCICA and DIS) and related to a variety of industries. Over the years, she has developed particular expertise in energy related disputes involving both short- and long-term supply agreements.

Before joining Peter & Kim, Nhu-Hoang practiced international arbitration at LALIVE and at the office of renowned arbitrator Pierre Tercier. Prior to that, she gained experience in the arbitration teams of magic circle firms in Paris and at arbitration boutiques in Geneva and London.

Nhu-Hoang is a former co-chair of the young branch of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA) and a co-founder of the Geneva chapter of Energy Related Arbitration Practitioners (ENERAP). Listed amongst the Who’s Who Arbitration Future Leaders ranking since 2019, she regularly speaks and publishes in the field of international arbitration.

Paul Tan

Paul TanPaul Tan is a partner of Cavenagh Law (Clifford Chance Asia), and heads its litigation practice for South East Asia.

Ranked in all major legal publications for international arbitration and litigation, and called to both the Singapore and English bars, his practice focuses on managing disputes across South East Asia, with deep experience advising on complex issues of public and private international law. Paul advises a wide range of clients, including leading multinational organisations, global insurers, financial institutions and Asian governments. He also sits as arbitrator. He is co-authoring the forthcoming edition of Mustill & Boyd's treatise on commercial and investment arbitration.

Paul is also a member of the ICC Commission on the Belt-and-Road Initiative, the YSIAC Committee of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre, the Executive Committee of the Council of the Law Society of Singapore, and co-leader of Swiss Arbitration Association for Southeast Asia.

Paul is a member of the Events team of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative.

Sara Koleilat-Aranjo

Sara Koleilat-AranjoSara Koleilat-Aranjo is a senior disputes and arbitration lawyer admitted to the New York, Paris and Beirut Bar Associations based in the Dubai office of Al Tamimi & Company, the largest law firm in the Middle East.

Sara regularly advises and represents clients in international and domestic arbitration proceedings, both ad hoc and institutional (ICC, DIAC, DIFC-LCIA, GCC Centre for Commercial Arbitration, LCIA, ICSID, PCA, UNCITRAL, etc.). Sara also represents clients in arbitration-related court proceedings, including applications for interim measures, recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards as well as set aside proceedings.

Sara is well versed in both the civil and common law legal traditions and has been involved in proceedings, as counsel, arbitrator and mediator, in the Arabic, French and English languages across several jurisdictions including Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Oman, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia in addition to France, United States, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Sara is a member of several professional organizations. She has been appointed as a Member of the ICC Commission on Arbitration & ADR and the IBA Subcommittee on International Arbitration Case Law. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of ArbitralWomen and serves as the Y-ICCA Coordinator for the MENA Region.

In addition to her practice of law, Sara has held several teaching and editorial appointments, including Editor of the Harvard Business Law Review and Lecturer in Law at the Sorbonne Law School in Paris and is currently a Lecturer in Law at the Paris II – Panthéon Assas University.

Sara holds an LL.B. in French and Lebanese law from Saint Joseph University, Masters in International Business Law from the University of René Descartes (Paris V), an Advanced Masters degree in Management and Finance from the ESSEC Business School and LL.M. from Harvard Law School.

Sara has been awarded the Middle East Rising Star Lawyer of the Year Award in 2019 by The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC), The American Lawyer and The Legal Week as a testament to her growing leadership in the legal profession.

Shirin Gurdova

Shirin GurdovaShirin Gurdova is an arbitration practitioner based in Paris, France. Shirin worked in international firms in Ashgabat, Geneva, and Paris, specializing in international dispute settlement. She has advised clients in investor-state arbitration and international commercial arbitration proceeding, both ad hoc (UNCITRAL) and under the auspices of major arbitral institutions (ICC and ICSID). She has particular expertise in banking, energy, and construction disputes. Shirin is also an Events Coordinator at Young ICCA.

Shirin holds an LL.M. in International Dispute Settlement (MIDS) from the Graduate Institute of Geneva and the University of Geneva, an LL.M. in Public International Law and Human Rights from the Riga Graduate School of Law and a BA in International and Business Law from the American University of Central Asia.

Shirin is fluent in Turkmen, Russian, English, and Turkish and has a working proficiency in Iranian Farsi and French.

Victoria Jeruto Kigen

Victoria Jeruto KigenVictoria Jeruto Kigen, a Kenyan licensed attorney with over 6 years’ experience in dispute resolution, is currently a Case Counsel at the Nairobi Centre for International Arbitration (NCIA) – Kenya’s premier Institutional Arbitration body. Ms. Victoria is responsible for handling NCIA administered proceedings, including contract-based administrations in both governmental and private parties’ disputes, among others.

Victoria is also part of the government of Kenya delegation and advisory team in the Africa Continental free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Investment Protocol negotiations, among others. She is also involved in cutting-edge International Arbitration projects driven by the African Arbitration Academy (AAA), among other Arbitral Institutions in Africa.

Before joining the NCIA, she was an Arbitration Associate at a leading Kenyan arbitration consultancy firm, where she served as a counsel and adviser in commercial and construction arbitrations under domestic and foreign arbitral regimes as well as ad hoc arbitrations under UNCITRAL and other procedural rules.

She is lauded as a young and upcoming arbitration practitioner in Africa and is listed in the Arbitrators of African Descent with a US Nexus list August 2020 issue. Victoria is also an active advocate for the promotion of diversity and equal opportunity among, young and experienced arbitrators. She is an Executive Committee member of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative (RAI) and an ambassador of Racial Equality for Arbitration Lawyers (R.E.A.L) launched in January 2021. She has additionally been actively involved in judging the annual Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Moot Competition over the past few years, among other ADR moot competitions.

Victoria holds an LL.B. from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), Kenya, Post-graduate Diploma in Law from the Kenya School of Law (KSL) and the White & Case International Arbitration LL.M. from the University of Miami School of law, USA.

She is fluent in English, Kiswahili, and Kalenjin.

Youssef Al Saman

Youssef Al SamanYoussef Al Saman is a Member of the Institutional Liaison Task Force of the Executive Committee of the Rising Arbitrators Initiative. He is a Partner – Dispute Resolution and Projects with Zulficar & Partners Law Firm, Member of the Egyptian Bar Association, Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (MCIArb), Fellow of the Asian Institute of Alternative Dispute Resolution (FAIADR).

He specialises in dispute resolution with a focus on international arbitration, where he serves as an arbitrator and appears as counsel. He regularly leads teams in prosecuting mega institutional and ad-hoc arbitral proceedings under different governing laws and procedural rules, as well as arbitration-related judicial proceedings. He is experienced also in preparing independent legal expert reports on laws of different countries in the MENA region. Along with his experience on contentious work, he developed notable corporate expertise, whereby he advises clients on different corporate matters, cross-border commercial transactions, sophisticated projects and multi-contracts transactions, and leads teams in conducting fully-fledged complex legal audit.

He skillfully combines legal know-how and business-oriented mindset drawing on the business and operational experience he acquired through years of work with multinationals before private practice. In addition, his area-focused legal expertise spans diverse industries and legal practice areas, inter alia, energy, telecommunications, construction, media, entertainment, technology, logistics, FMCGs, international trade, corporate law, governmental contracts, and security and defense.

Furthermore, in 2020, he received the maiden edition of the Africa’s 50 Most Promising Young Arbitration Practitioners Award by the Association of Young Arbitrators. Also, he was recognised for ‘very commercial outlook’ and ‘knowledge of the market’, says the 2020 Legal 500 Next Generation Partners – Dispute Resolution, and he appeared in the Chambers & Partners 2020 Edition. In 2019, he was voted as a leading young Egyptian legal practitioner and received the Rising Stars Award by the LAW Magazine, he appeared in an interview for the LAW Magazine 2019 issue, and he featured in the Gobal Arbitration Review. In 2016, he was praised as ‘excellent: very experienced in commercial arbitration and litigation’, says the Legal 500 (2016). In 2015, he featured in the Global Arbitration Review.

His law teaching and legal training experience involved holding a visiting teaching position in academia, and delivering high-level legal training courses with the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative. He obtained his license en droit (LLB) from Cairo University - Egypt, English linguistic studies from the University of Cambridge - UK, Master of Laws (LL.M) in International and Comparative Law from Indiana University, Robert H. McKinney School of Law Indianapolis - US, and Master of Laws (LL.M) in International Dispute Resolution from Queen Mary University of London - UK.

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