A delegation from the Bar Council of the Maldives (BCM), established in 2019, met with State Bar of Wisconsin leaders and team members, as well as Office of Lawyer Regulation Director Timothy Samuelson (far left). State Bar President Cheryl Daniels (front, left) and others provided insights to BCM President Maumoon Hameed (front, right) and his team.
March 2, 2022 – Hoping to learn more about Wisconsin’s lawyer regulation system and the State Bar of Wisconsin’s structure and programming, a delegation from the Bar Council of the Maldives (BCM) visited the State Bar Center in Madison last week.
The delegation, led by BCM President Maumoon Hameed, was visiting the U.S. to study and observe administration of the bar exams in Illinois and Wisconsin and learn about best practices for bar association management and operations.
BCM is a mandatory bar created just three years ago, in 2019, as the first-ever independent, self-regulating bar association in the country.
The Republic of Maldives, an archipelago nation located south of India and Sri Lanka, in the Indian Ocean, underwent a democratic transition in 2018-19.
The BCM delegation, assisted by the American Bar Association’s
Rule of Law Initiative (ROLI), heard presentations from State Bar President Cheryl Daniels and Office of Lawyer Regulation (OLR) Director Timothy Samuelson.
State Bar Executive Director Larry Martin discussed the State Bar’s history and governance structure, and the BCM delegation heard presentations in other State Bar areas, including ethics (Timothy Pierce) and pro bono (Jeffery L. Brown).
“The trip has been fantastic and very enlightening in the way that everything is structured and organized,” said President Maumoon. “It has given us a lot of ideas to take back with us, including how you are engaging and training young bar leaders for the future.”
“It was also interesting to learn about the pro bono programs and the pro bono culture. We are very excited to go back and implement some of these ideas to improve engagement with bar members, and increase pro bono efforts.”
President Maumoon said the trip was important to learn about bar exam administration, but also to establish relationships with state bars with more than 100 years of experience in structuring the legal profession. “We want to tap into that expertise, and the trip has opened our eyes to the possibilities,” he said.
The State Bar of Wisconsin is not a stranger to assisting other countries in the development of their legal systems and structures. In 2017, the State Bar
received an invitation from the U.S. State Department to help Armenia strengthen its justice system.
Five Wisconsin legal professionals – including State Bar Ethics Counsel Tim Pierce and representatives from the Wisconsin State Public Defender Office – traveled 6,000 miles to offer assistance to help Armenia refine and enhance its justice system.