Padideh Ala’i is a Professor of Law at American University Washington College of Law (WCL). She specializes in international economic law, law of the World Trade Organization (WTO), and comparative legal traditions. She teaches international trade law and comparative law. Professor Alai’s scholarship has concentrated on the history of free trade, transparency obligations of the WTO and their implications on internal domestic transparency, universalizing the administrative state through the multilateral trading system, as well as good governance and evolution of international anti-corruption norms.
In August 2017, Professor Ala’i was appointed Director of International and Comparative Legal Studies and Faculty Director of the International Legal Studies Program (ILSP). In her new role, she promotes, represents, and coordinates the law school’s renowned international programs that have been consistently ranked among some of the most prestigious programs in the United States. Professor Ala’i is also the Director of the Humbert Humphrey Fellowship Program at WCL, a Fulbright program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. The Program brings accomplished mid-career professionals from developing countries to the U.S for 10 months of non-degree study and professional development in the general field of law and human rights. In addition, since 2014, she has led the interdisciplinary Trade, Investment and Development Program (TID) that provides resources to students interested in linkage between trade and other disciplines such as intellectual property, environment, investment, labor and human rights.
Professor Ala’i received her J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1988.
Melanija Radnovic is the Director of ILSP and WCL Abroad. In this role, she also serves as Director of the International Visiting Scholars Program. Melanija teaches ILSP Externship Class for LLM Students and she also thought Visiting Scholars Seminar. For almost a decade now, she has represented AUWCL community in number of domestic and international conferences focused on international education, study abroad, career and professional development, student wellness, cross cultural communication and diversity, and collaborated with the US Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs on initiatives aimed to improve educational programs offered to international mid-career professionals and professionals with disabilities. Melanija has worked as a municipal court associate judge; as independent attorney practiced in the areas of business, labor, family and property law; and cooperated with the CIEL and several other NGOs in the DC area on a number of legal research projects related to international environmental law issues, and issues of foreign investment and trade in developing countries. Melanija has a JD from University of Novi Sad Law School and an LL.M. from American University Washington College of Law with two specializations in International Business and Environmental Law.
Rachel manages WCL international initiatives for JD students, primarily focusing on international dual degree, semester exchange, and summer abroad programs. She serves as the on-site coordinator in Brussels, Luxembourg, and Strasbourg for the European Law course in WCL’s multi-city European summer program. In addition, she evaluates new and existing partnerships, handling all domestic and international Memoranda of Agreement between WCL and partner institutions. Rachel has developed the Global Legal Skills Initiative to help JD students navigate law school with the goal of practicing law in a global and/or international setting.
In her role as a member of the Office of Global Opportunities (renamed WCL Abroad in 2017) since 2012, Rachel previously managed the International Visiting Scholars and Washington Seminar Programs for international visitors. Along with her administrative duties, Rachel teaches legal research and writing to non-common law trained LLM students. She serves on the Board of Governors of the Washington Foreign Law Society where she was the Co-Chair of Programs during the 2016-17 term. In 2017, Rachel was selected as one of fifteen American higher education professionals to participate in the Fulbright International Education Administrators Seminar in Germany. Rachel has a JD from American University Washington College of Law and a BS from Cornell University. She is currently enrolled in American University’s graduate TESOL certificate program and is a member of the State Bar of Maryland.
Tra Pham is Assistant Director of ILSP and International Academic Programs. In this role, she works closely with the Office of Graduate Studies in matters related to ILSP admission and scholarships, and with the international law faculty in curricular matters. In addition, she is responsible for administering WCL’s Trade, Investment and Development program (TID). TID focuses on promoting study and career development in the area of international trade and investment through curricular improvement, organizing high-profile conferences and workshops for students to learn and network, and connecting students with internships, externships, and job opportunities.
Before joining ILSP, Tra Pham worked as a lawyer in intellectual property rights, and as a researcher in international investment law and arbitration. She holds a Bachelor of Law degree from Hanoi Law University, Vietnam, an LL.M. degree from American University Washington College of Law, and a Ph.D. degree from KU Leuven, Belgium. She is admitted to practice law in the State of New York.
Olga Morkova is the ILSP Recruitment and Alumni Engagement Coordinator. She manages alumni engagement, social media, and marketing initiatives as they relate to ILSP recruitment. Originally from Crimea, Olga has worked in the field of international refugee law and forced displacement with UNHCR, OSCE, the Council of Europe and other organizations. She has drafted legislation related to the annexation of Crimea and the internal displacement crisis in Ukraine. Olga has produced and directed human rights related documentaries and has also worked in PR and marketing in NYC.
Olga holds a Bachelor of Law and a Master of Law degree from Yaroslav the Wise National Law Academy of Ukraine, an LL.M. degree in International Legal Studies with a specialization in human rights from American University Washington College of Law, and an MA degree in Migration and Diaspora Studies from SOAS, University of London. She is a recipient of both Fulbright and Chevening Scholarships.
Megan Petry is the Coordinator for the International and Comparative Legal Studies Program, and acts as a primary point of contact for WCL students, faculty, and staff. She serves as a general resource for all LL.M. Program students, coordinates both the English for Lawyers Summer Program and the Spanish for Lawyers Program, and manages the daily operation of the International Suite. Originally from the Philadelphia area, Megan holds a BA in Literature from Susquehanna University, an MA in International Training and Education from American University, and studied abroad in London, England. Prior to joining WCL, Megan worked for Bucknell University in the Office of Development and Alumni Relations coordinating donor visits and managing department finances.