Nizar El Fakih is a nonresident senior fellow with the Strategic Litigation Project at the Atlantic Council. He is a lawyer who has served as a consultant on law and public policy for multilateral development banks and other international organizations in Washington, DC, on issues related to institutional capacity building, sectorial regulations and reforms, transparency and integrity, country programs and strategies, and public-private partnerships.
Earlier in his career, El Fakih practiced private law and litigation in international law firms while providing pro bono legal assistance on issues related to human rights and serving as an associate professor at the faculty of law of the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello in Venezuela. He has lectured at different universities in the United States and Latin America including Tufts University, Emerson College, Universidad de Los Andes, and Universidad Iberoamericana. He is also the founder of Proiuris, a nonprofit organization that promotes international law and human rights in Venezuela, Colombia, and Latin America.
El Fakih has served as an expert on international law in US domestic courts, in panels at the European Parliament and the OAS, and in submissions and cases before the United Nations Human Rights Council and at the Inter-American Commission and Court on Human Rights. Among recognitions for his work, El Fakih has received the Medal of Honor from the Caracas Bar Association, the Amnesty International Award for outstanding activism, the Human Rights Award granted by the Canadian government, and the Rita Bahr granted by the University of Notre Dame.
El Fakih has been a Global Shaper at the World Economic Forum, an advisory council member of the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law, and a fellow at Harvard University, where he also served as co-chair of the Venezuelan Caucus. El Fakih holds a JD-equivalent degree from the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello, and master’s degrees in laws and public administration from Harvard University and the University of Notre Dame, respectively.