Center Board Member Wins MacArthur Award

May 25, 2009

goldstoneRichard Goldstone, the incoming chairman of the Center's advisory board, received the MacArthur Award for International Justice today at a ceremony in The Hague.

The award provides Goldstone with $100,000 for his own work and invites him to suggest an additional $500,000 in support for nonprofit organizations working on international justice issues. At Goldstone’s suggestion, MacArthur is awarding a $100,000 grant to the Ethics Center, which will be used toward programs that promote judicial dialogue. The first program will be the South American Judicial Colloquium, scheduled for November 2009 in Buenos Aires.

Goldstone served as the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia. A native of South Africa, he chaired from 1991 to 1994 what became known as the Goldstone Commission, an independent judicial commission that investigated activities and people who posed a threat to the restoration of civil rights during the transition to post-apartheid South Africa. He was recently named to head a fact-finding mission investigating alleged war crimes during the conflict in Gaza from December 2008 to January 2009.

In accepting the award, Goldstone said: “I am delighted that the MacArthur Award recognizes the centrality in the 21st century of international criminal justice. It is a system that withdraws impunity for war criminals even if they are sitting heads of state. It is also a system that recognizes the inherent dignity of all human beings and seeks to bring official acknowledgement to victims of atrocity crimes.”

MacArthur President Jonathan Fanton presented the Award and said: “As chief prosecutor of the UN International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, Justice Goldstone displayed a mature, meticulous, and measured exercise of his mandate that reanimated the enterprise of international justice, bringing both a degree of resolution to victims and a new model for the prosecution of crimes against humanity. Insisting on the independence of the counsel and judges, a transparent establishment of the facts in each case, due-process protections for the accused, and the centrality of first-hand testimony from witnesses and surviving victims, he gave the Tribunals moral authority and legal credibility. Justice Goldstone stood guarantor for the responsibility, probity, and value of international justice; his unquestioned competence and integrity won the faith of the world.”

In addition to his work on the Ethics Center board since its inception in 2000, Goldstone has served as one of the directors of the Brandeis Institute for International Judges since its inception in 2002.