IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer Award

IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer

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The Women Lawyers’ Interest Group present this biennial award and invites you to nominate a female lawyer who you believe is deserving of this prestigious award.

Application details

The Women Lawyers’ Interest Group holds its World Women Lawyers’ Conference biennially, at which it presents this award.

The Women Lawyers’ Interest Group would like to thank LexisNexis for their generous sponsorship of the Award which includes a US$5,000 donation to cover or contribute to the cost of travel, and accommodation for the winner, in order to attend the conference to receive the award.

The Women Lawyers’ Interest Group of the International Bar Association, the world’s largest international organisation of Law Societies, Bar Associations and individual lawyers engaged in transnational law, offers a forum for women members from Australia to Zambia to discuss topics of global significance to women practitioners. In addition to fostering women lawyers’ business potentials, the Group also aims to provide informal advice and assistance in areas of interest.

The next opportunity to apply for the IBA Women Lawyers’ Interest Group IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer will be in 2020, please click here if you would like to be informed when the award will be open for nominations in 2020.

Previous winners

Congratulations to Eloísa Machado de Almeida winner of the 2018 IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer !

Professor Eloísa Machado de Almeida received the Award in recognition of her exceptional work as a human rights lawyer and for her contribution to the promotion of women's rights. She is the founder of the Human Rights Advocacy Collective (CADHu), which unites lawyers to act pro bono in strategic landmark human rights litigation. Under this initiative, the first collective habeas corpus was recognised by the Supreme Court, determining the release of more than 5,000 pregnant women or mothers in prison awaiting trial and 2,000 children who were with them. Professor Machado de Almeida aims to ‘transform CADHu into the largest network of human rights lawyers in the country and then internationalise its activities, forming a new and prepared generation of human rights lawyers’.


Congratulations to Carol Xueref, winner of the 2016 IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer !

In the letter nominating Ms Xueref for the award, Linda Hesse, Head of the Paris Capital Markets practice at international law firm Jones Day, wrote: ‘Carol has demonstrated throughout her career what women of intellect and commitment can accomplish, both in our professional endeavours and as agents for change in the legal profession and beyond… Carol consistently recognises her team and colleagues (“putting them in the limelight”) so that as she has advanced others are able to advance as well. Carol has ensured that the members of her team are given equal opportunities and remuneration as well as the time and resources… to achieve a proper work-life balance. This strategic opening of opportunity is a hallmark of a true leader and exactly the kind of woman we should honour with this award.’


Congratulations to Dr Kankasa-Mabula, winner of the 2014 IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer !

Dr Kankasa-Mabula received the Award for educating local law students at the University of Zambia for 18 years before leaving for industry, her being an ardent and consistent gender equality activist and her contribution to the development of the law in Zambia as co-editor of the Zambia Law Reports.


Congratulations to Chief Olufolake Solanke, winner of the 2012 IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer !

Chief Solanke has an impressive record of pro bono and humanitarian work, particularly in protecting the rights of women and children. She was also the first female legal practitioner to be elevated to the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria and the first non-Caucasian to be elected as President of Zonta International, a global organisation of executive women working towards the advancement of the status of women internationally.


Congratulations to Anne-Marie Hutchinson, winner of the 2010 IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer !

Anne-Marie was admitted in 1985 and joined the family law firm Dawson Cornwell in January 1998 as head of the children department. She has had an outstanding career specialising in international divorce forum and jurisdictional disputes on divorce, with particular expertise in international custody disputes, child abduction, the EU regulation on jurisdiction in family matters and international adoption. She also acts for the victims of forced marriages.