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May 31, 2013

Will Johnson is 2013 Kerry Adam Lewiecki Award recipient

University of Oregon 3L student Will Johnson has been selected to receive the 2013 Kerry Adam Lewiecki Award for his conflict resolution work. The award is given to an Oregon Law student who has demonstrated interest in conflict resolution through personal, professional and political activities, particularly those that advance the well-being of underrepresented individuals, and whose work furthers the goals and values of compassion and reconciliation. The student must have also completed one or more full years of study in Oregon Law's J.D. or Conflict and Dispute Resolution (CRES) program. 

Johnson, who is a concurrent J.D. and International Studies master's degree student, was chosen for the award by a committee with input from the Lewiecki family. The award was established three years ago in honor of Kerry Adam Lewiecki, a J.D. and CRES master's degree student who died unexpectedly at the age of 27 in 2010. As a skilled and courageous leader, he believed in reconciliation of disparate views through mediation.

"The award honors Will for what he contributes to this community and for how he cultivates the values, passions and interests that characterized Kerry and for which we remember him," said Tim Hicks, director of the CRES program.

Johnson received his undergraduate degree in international studies, with a concentration in diplomacy, law and international relations in Latin America. In 2012 he participated in the Oregon Review of International Law symposium "War and Memory: Bearing Witness to Loss in Everyday Life." During the summer of 2011 he spent three months working in El Salvador as a 2011-12 Ryoichi Sasakawa Young Leaders Fellow, where he conducted independent research and interned with Asociación Pro-Búsqueda de Niños y Niñas Desaparecidos.

More recently, in January 2013, Johnson began an 11-week externship with the Center for Justice and Accountability, an international human rights organization that works to bring perpetrators of mass human rights abuses to justice. In mid-April, Johnson traveled to Pakistan as a research and lecture fellow with the American Institute of Pakistan Studies. His M.A. thesis project explores how levels of perceived corruption and impunity act as a barrier to the rule of law in states confronting systemic violence, and how lawyers work within what outsiders consider to be corrupt judicial systems.

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