David Arthur Rhodes Williams, QC, has been honoured with an appointment to The New Zealand Order of Merit.
The appointment by the Queen on the celebration of the new year recognises the renowned international arbitrator’s services to international law and international arbitration.
Williams, now a Knight Compannion of The New Zealand Order of Merit, is a barrister and arbitrator with over 30 years’ experience as counsel in commercial litigation in New Zealand and abroad. He has been recognised as one of the top international arbitrators in the world and has been an arbitrator in more than 150 international arbitrations.
He is a member of Bankside Chambers, Auckland, New Zealand and Maxwell Chambers, Singapore. He is also an associate member of Essex Court Chambers, London. He is an Honorary Professor of Law at the University of Auckland
Williams was key to establishing a branch of the International Chamber of Commerce, Court of Arbitration, Paris in New Zealand (ICCNZ), enabling New Zealand lawyers to serve on the International Court of Arbitration in Paris.
He was the first New Zealand Appointee to the ICC Court of Arbitration from 1999 to 2002 and been a long-time member of the Arbitrators’ and Mediators’ Institute of New Zealand (AMINZ) in which he served as president from 2004 to 2006.
As AMINZ president, he established the AMINZ Arbitration Appeals Tribunal. He is also involved with AMINZ International, which seeks to promote New Zealand as a venue for international arbitrations from Australasian and Oceania.
The legal veteran also served as a Judge of the High Court of New Zealand
from 1991 to 1994. He has been a Judge in the Cook Islands for more than 15 years and is currently President of the Cook Islands Court of Appeal.
In 2010 he drafted an Arbitration Act which was passed by the Cook Islands Parliament. He also authored New Zealand’s leading text on arbitration with Amokura Kawharu. Early in his career, he helped found the Environmental Defence Society and wrote New Zealand’s first legal text book on Environmental Law.
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