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William (Bill) Loris

Senior Lecturer, Program Director | Loyola University Chicago School of Law (Rome Campus)

Member of Hague Rule of Law Network

Mr. Loris holds a Juris Doctorate degree from the Santa Clara University School of Law (1972) and a Master's Degree in International and Comparative Law from the Vreij Universiteit Brussel (1973).
He served for five years in Abidjan, Ivory Coast as a Regional Legal Advisor for West Africa to the US Agency for International Development (USAID), as well as in Cairo as a Legal Advisor in USAID's Egypt mission. He then co-founded the International Development Law Institute, a Dutch foundation, which was later transformed into the International Development Law Organization (IDLO). IDLO is now a key international institution in the promotion of the rule of law in developing countries, countries in economic transition and countries recovering from violent conflict. Mr. Loris has served as IDLO's Director General for 10 years. In these capacities Mr. Loris has been a leading advocate for the rule of law throughout the developing countries and countries in economic transition and for the improvement the effectiveness of such countries in international negotiations.
Mr. Loris has now joined the School of Law of Loyola University of Chicago to found and manage a new LL.M. program on Rule of Law for Development (PROLAW) - the first LL.M. program to focus on the practical aspects of rule of law advising.

Personal motto: 'When a country is living under the rule of law, few think or talk about the rule of law. When a country lives without the rule of law, people think and talk about rule of law all the time.'

Rule of Law expertise

  • Institutional and Professional Capacity Building
  • Preparing legal professionals for rule of law work
  • Anti Corruption

Country / region expertise

  • Central and Eastern Europe
  • Afghanistan
  • Africa

Top achievements

  • Co founded the International Development Law Organization (IDLO), of which he was later the Director for many years, and for which he achieved a Permanent Observer status at the UN General Assembly
  • Set up the LLM programme Rule of Law for Development at the School of Law of Loyola University of Chicago
  • Worked in over 120 countries at the highest levels

Favourite quote

An ineffective rule of law advisor is often wrong, but seldom in doubt.
Roy Jackson, former Deputy Director General, FAO