The University of Iowa

Ambassador Rapp visits UI to speak about global justice April 3

April 6th, 2012

Stephen J. Rapp of Iowa, the ambassador-at-large heading the Office of Global Criminal Justice in the U.S. Department of State, will give a lecture titled "Diplomacy for Global Justice: The tools for establishing truth, accountability and reconciliation after the commission of mass atrocities." Rapp will speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 3, in the South Room of the Iowa Memorial Union.

Stephen J. Rapp

The lecture is free and open to the public and will be followed by a reception. The University of Iowa Center for Human Rights in UI International Programs, the UI College of Law, and the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council (ICFRC), also a community partner with UI International Programs, are sponsoring the event.

Rapp was appointed by President Barack Obama, confirmed by the senate, and assumed his duties on Sept. 8, 2009. Prior to his appointment, Rapp served as prosecutor of the special court for Sierra Leone beginning in January 2007, responsible for leading the prosecutions of former Liberian President Charles Taylor and other persons alleged to bear the greatest responsibility for the atrocities committed during the civil war in Sierra Leone. During his tenure in Sierra Leone, his office won the first convictions in history for recruitment and use of child soldiers and for sexual slavery and forced marriage as crimes under international humanitarian law.

From 2001 to 2007, Rapp served as senior trial attorney and chief of prosecutions at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, personally heading the trial team that achieved convictions of the principals of RTLM radio and Kangura newspaper—the first in history for leaders of the mass media for the crime of direct and public incitement to commit genocide.

Rapp was United States Attorney in the Northern District of Iowa from 1993 to 2001, where his office won historic convictions under the firearms provision of the Violence Against Women Act and the serious violent offender provision of the 1994 Crime Act.

Prior to his tenure as U.S. Attorney, he worked as an attorney in private practice and served as staff director of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency and as an elected member of the Iowa Legislature. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard College in 1971. He attended Columbia and Drake Law Schools and received his Juris Doctorate degree from Drake in 1974.

For more information or special accommodations to attend this event, contact Liz Crooks at 319-335-3900 or or Amy Weismann at 319-335-0483 or, both in the UI Center for Human Rights.