Season One of a new podcast series titled Tales of the Tribunal, created by Christopher Campbell, features interviews with 15 women from various generations and regions who have followed a variety of paths to pursue a successful career in international dispute resolution. Season One – launched in May and concluded in September 2019 – consists entirely of female interviewees. A majority of the women interviewed are ArbitralWomen members. There have been more than 1,000 downloads of the podcast so far.
Interviewees in Season One include ArbitralWomen members Saadia Bhatty, Bettina Knoetzl, Amanda Lee, Dana MacGrath, Rose Rameau, Rekha Rangachari, Catherine Rogers, Sherlin Tung and Mica Worthy.
Other women interviewed include Filipa Cansado Carvhalo, Lakshanthi Fernando, Adwoa Ghartey-Tagoe Seymour, Sarah Grimmer, Mercy McBrayer and Claudia Winkler.
The women interviewed are a diverse cross-section of the international arbitration community, including law firm practitioners, in-house counsel, arbitrators, academics, professionals at arbitral institutions and arbitration centres, and others involved in the field. Some of the topics addressed by the women interviewed include how to find a job and develop a career path in the field; the importance and value of diversity; building relationships in the field; how to find and develop a relationship with a mentor; and contemporary issues and hot topics in international arbitration. For each interview, there is a brief description of the interviewee on the podcast website.
Curator and host of the podcast, Christopher Campbell, is an American who has pursued his career in international dispute resolution from many different parts of the world, most recently in Florence as Visiting Counsel at Baker Hughes, a GE Company, since February 2019. He is a U.S. trained lawyer with an L.L.M. in Chinese Law from Tsinghua University.
When asked what inspired him to create the Tales of the Tribunal podcast, Chris Campbell told ArbitralWomen: “The world (and business) of international law is filled with so many interesting people doing interesting work, yet I feel their stories aren’t being told. These stories hold tales of perseverance, ingenuity and forging one’s own path—plus, they tend to be endlessly fascinating. I believe there is value to our community to hearing those stories, and I see my show as a platform to tell them.”
ArbitralWomen was able to reach some of the women who were interviewed and invited them to comment on the podcast and tell us why they chose to participate.
Here’s what the ArbitralWomen members interviewed told us:
“I chose to be interviewed … because I regularly share career advice with younger lawyers, many … from under-represented jurisdictions. I was pleased to discover the podcast as a platform for diverse members of the community to share career tips and discuss the various and often non-traditional career evolution paths, which hopefully encourages lawyers aspiring to specialize in international arbitration to do so,” commented Saadia Bhatty, counsel at Gide Loyrette Nouel.
“Everyone in international arbitration has a story to tell: Chris Campbell’s ‘Tales of the Tribunal’ provides a welcome forum for those stories to be told with warmth, humour and insight, shining a spotlight on what it is really like to work at the coalface in this fascinating field,” commented ArbitralWomen Director Amanda Lee, arbitrator and consultant at Seymours.
“I’ve listened to almost every episode of Season One of Tales of the Tribunal. The stories of these women are truly inspiring. There is much to be learned here about the many different paths to a successful career in international arbitration. What makes this podcast resonate for me is the low-key, conversational style in which Chris Campbell draws out each woman’s tale. It’s very personal and genuine. By the end of an episode, you feel like you actually met that woman in person,” commented ArbitralWomen President Dana MacGrath, Investment Manager and Legal Counsel at Bentham IMF.
“The podcast contributes to the international arbitration community because it exposes some of the non-traditional pathways to become international arbitrators and or disputes resolution practitioners and it also provides insights to other women around the world on how to break into such practice area,” commented Rose Rameau, partner Rameau Law Firm.
Rekha Rangachari, Executive Director of the New York International Arbitration Center, remarked, “The podcast contributes to the international arbitration community because … the podcast opens a window to candid narratives and humour, encouraging greater cross-border collaboration, community, and conviviality.”
Catherine Rogers, Professor of Law and founder of Arbitrator Intelligence, commented, “I chose to be interviewed as part of the Tales of the Tribunal podcast because an independent podcast, particularly by a new but important voice like Chris Campbell’s, is a great forum to tell our story about Arbitrator Intelligence.”
“The podcast contributes to the international arbitration community because it helps highlight the various paths that one can take to enter and find a place in the community. It was a pleasure for me hearing about the other interviewees’ experiences and the unique paths each has travelled, and it was inspirational to hear how much value women have contributed to the industry,” commented Mika Worthy, a partner at Cranfill Sumner & Hartzog LLP.
We were also able to reach many of the other women interviewed in Season One. Here’s what they told us about the podcast:
“The aspect of Season One of the podcast series that I believe is most relevant to women pursuing a career in dispute resolution is that it provides unique insight into the challenges and joys of building a career in in international dispute resolution, through the sharing of anecdotes and advice by practitioners with diverse backgrounds, experiences and practices, while at the same time showcasing female talent in this field,” commented Filipa Cansado Carvhalo, a lawyer with the firm PLMJ.
Lakshanthi Fernando, Managing Director of CMS Holborn Asia, commented, “I chose to be interviewed as part of the Tales of the Tribunal podcast because it’s a fun, unique platform to share our stories – the joys, the challenges and opportunities – as women working in the world of international arbitration and, hopefully, inspire others to do the same.”
“I chose to be interviewed … because I think the in-house counsel perspective is an important voice to add to the discussion surrounding efforts to make the ADR field more diverse. It is a common understanding that parties ultimately choose their arbitrator, … often … it is the in-house attorney that is the ultimate decision-maker,” commented Adwoa Ghartey-Tagoe Seymour, in-house counsel at Cox Enterprises, Inc. “The diversity of an arbitration panel, especially in the international arbitration space, is truly a value-add to ensuring that parties believe they have had a well-reasoned and impartial outcome.”
“The podcast contributes to the international arbitration community because it records the varied paths that can be taken,” commented Sarah Grimmer, Secretary-General of Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre.
Claudia Winkler, an international Negotiation Trainer and founder of The Negotiation Academy™, commented, “The podcast contributes to the international arbitration community because it gives aspirants personal insights not only into the many different paths a career in international arbitration can lead them to, but also shares the challenges each of them will bring and that we are all in them together.”
Congratulations to Chris Campbell and his team for producing Season One of the podcast featuring such a diverse group of women in international arbitration.
We asked Chris Campbell what is in the pipeline for Tales of the Tribunal going forward. “More tales and stories! But first, we are working on a series of episodes that will profile the Vis Moot from the perspective of students, coaches, and organizers of the competition,” commented Chris Campbell. “Then there will be a break until early 2020 when Season 2 premiers.”
For more information on Tales of the Tribunal, contact TalesOfTheTribunal@Gmail.com.