The mission of the CEELI Institute is to advance the rule of law in the world in order to protect fundamental rights and individual liberties; promote transparent, incorruptible, accountable governments; lay the foundation for economic opportunity and growth; and encourage peaceful resolution of disputes.

The theory of change

We reach exceptional individuals through professional training and networks of expertise so that they have the tools and professional support to advance the rule of law at home. 

How we do it

We develop innovative training programs, grow networks of professionals, and promote peer-to-peer exchanges across four key areas of work: judicial independence and integrity, anti-corruption, legal skills and capacity, and civil society support. We collaborate with actors across all corners of society: judges, lawyers, prosecutors, investigators, and civil society.

The CEELI Story

The CEELI Institute was established in Prague in 2000. Scroll below to learn more about our early origins and growth.


1990 — The Central and Eastern European Law Initiative (CEELI)

The American Bar Association launches the Central and Eastern European Law Initiative (ABA CEELI). As part of this initiative, more than 5,000 judges, attorneys, law professors, and legal specialists provided pro bono assistance to promote the rule of law in the region.

2000 — Establishment of the CEELI Institute

The CEELI Institute is formally established at the Villa Grébovka in Prague as an independent non-profit organization. ABA CEELI continues independently and evolves into the ABA Rule of Law Initiative. The renovation of the Villa required substantial funding, starting with a generous grant from the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

2007 — Dedication of the Villa Grébovka

On June 8th, the former Czech President Vaclav Havel and U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor join CEELI Institute Founder Homer Moyer to publicly dedicate the Villa Grébovka as the headquarters of the CEELI Institute which continues today.

2011 — First Conference of the Chief Justices of Central and Eastern Europe

The CEELI Institute helps establish the Conference of Chief Justices of Central and Eastern Europe, which annually brings together the senior judges from the region’s highest courts to share and develop strategies and best practices to promote judicial integrity and accountability, to improve court management, and to combat corruption in the courts.

2012 — Launch of CEELI's Central and Eastern European Judicial Network

The Network facilitates career growth and development for the judges, fosters peer engagement, and produces concrete tools to better assist the judges in performing their duties.

2012 — CEELI's First Advanced Anticorruption Course

The CEELI Institute launches its now marquee training designed and delivered by the world’s experts on investigating and prosecuting official corruption.

2012-2018 — CEELI Trains Tunisian Judges

The Institute partners with the Tunisian judiciary to train nearly all Tunisian judges, focusing on judging in a democratic society. This program brings together judges from all ranks and courts in Tunisia at regular workshops designed to improve professional skills and to build the public’s confidence in the judiciary.

2013 — Support to Myanmar Lawyers

The Institute begins supporting human rights lawyers in Myanmar, in partnership with the Burma Center Prague.

2015 — CEELI's Fellowship Program

The Institute starts providing respite, fellowship, and sabbatical opportunities in Prague for human rights lawyers, journalists, and civil society working under stressful and challenging conditions in repressive environments.

2017 — Expanding our Work to India

Our work expands to India with a new partnership with the Indian National Judicial Academy and the U.S. Federal Judicial Center to promote exchanges between U.S. and Indian judges.

2017 — New Anti-Corruption Curricula

The Institute begins cooperating with anti-corruption watchdogs and launches anti-corruption training combining law enforcement with watchdogs, encouraging cooperation on corruption investigations.

2017 — EU Judicial Training Series

The Institute starts a series of legal education programs for judges from Central and Eastern European Union member states on relevant EU instruments and directives governing the application of both civil and criminal law.

2020 — Launch of CEELI Online

Amid the pandemic, the Institute launches CEELI Online, its one-stop hub for specialized, remotely accessible courses and dialogues for legal, judicial, and civil society professionals. Through this platform, CEELI offers integrated courses on a wide range of timely and relevant topics.

2021 — Launch of the African Judicial Exchange Network

The African Judicial Exchange Network (AJN) is established, with an initial group of six countries. The AJN comprises judges from anglophone African countries who regularly gather to share knowledge and experience on issues such as judicial independence, anti-corruption, transparency, accountability, efficiency, and ethics.

2022 — Emergency Support to Ukraine

Very soon after Russia’s war broke out in Ukraine, the Institute rapidly fundraised over $200,000 in private donations to provide humanitarian support to Ukrainian refugees in Prague. As the war carried on, we launched a Summer School for Ukrainian law students on legal skills needed during wartime that we have continued through 2023.  

2023 — Anti-Corruption Support to Ukraine

The CEELI Institute expands our training offer and support to Ukrainian anti-corruption agencies, investigators, and prosecutors to address wartime risks and in anticipation of reconstruction.

Our Team

Executive Director

Robert R. Strang

Director of Finance and Administration

Marta Werenycka

Communications Manager

Lauriane Labourel

Senior Events Manager

Maria Gorodnycka

Events Coordinator

Anastasiia Hirzekorn

Events and Online Learning Coordinator

Natálie Smutná

Director Of Programs

Marek Svoboda

Senior Program Manager, Judicial Programs Europe

Marcela Entlichová

Program Manager, Judicial Programs Africa

Monique Kamies

Program Manager, Judicial Programs Asia

María Ladrón de Guevara Lozano

Senior Program Advisor, Anti-Corruption

Halyna Senyk

Program Officer, Anti-Corruption

Marianne Bajgar Aalto

Program Officer

Mariia Kaplina

Program Officer, Judicial Programs

Arlind Puka

Residence Manager

Simona Trázníková

Assistant Residence Manager

Jindra Erbenová

Maintenance Assistant

Jiří Manda

Our Leadership


Mark S. Ellis

Chair of the Management Board

Executive Director, the International Bar Association


Maryann Clifford

Vice-Chair of the Management Board

Ethics Consultant, former Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer, BP plc and Motorola


Susan Ringler

Vice-Chair of the Management Board

CEELI Institute Vice-Chair; former Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer, International Rescue Committee


Timothy L. Dickinson

Senior Counsel, Paul Hastings LLP


Eytan Epstein

Senior Partner, Firon & Company


Leanne Geale

EVP, General Counsel, Corporate Governance and Compliance, Nestle


Susan Gouijnstook

Chief Solutions Officer, Jobs for the Future (JFF)


Hon. Ivana Hrdličková

Former President, Special Tribunal for Lebanon


Alexander Juden

Author, former Advisor, Schlumberger Ltd


Homer E. Moyer, Jr.

Founder and Chair Emeritus of the CEELI Institute; Senior Counsel, Miller & Chevalier


J. Larry Nichols

Chairman Emeritus, Devon Energy Corporation


Hon. Barrington D. Parker, Jr.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit


Timothy Powers

Senior Counsel, Haynes and Boone


Laura Stein

Executive Vice President, General Counsel, Corporate and Legal Affairs, Mondelēz International


Hon. John Tunheim

U.S. District Court for Minnesota


William Meyer

Former Attorney, Hutchinson Black and Cook


Jiřina Nováková

Former Vice-Mayor, Prague 9


Martin Šolc

Partner, Kocián Šolc Balaštik; President, the International Bar Association


Quinn O'Keefe


Founder of Climate for Justice


John Mullen


Senior Advisor, McLarty Associates


Jean-Michel Ferat

Senior Managing Director, Ankura Consulting Group


Jonathan Fried

Former Coordinator, Int. Economic Relations; Former Personal Representative of the Prime Minister for the G20, Canada


Homer E. Moyer, Jr.

Founder and Chair Emeritus of the CEELI Institute; Senior Counsel, Miller & Chevalier


Hon. John M. Walker Jr.

U.S. Court of Appeals for Second Circuit


Ann Sultan

Vice Chair, International at Miller & Chevalier Chartered | Practice Co-Lead, Workplace Culture and ConducMiller & Chevalier


Timothy L. Dickinson

Chair of the International Advisory Board

CEELI Institute International Advisory Board Chair; Senior Counsel, Paul Hastings LLP


Essam Al-Tamimi

Attorney, Al Tamimi and Company


Elizabeth Andersen

Executive Director, World Justice Project


Kate Atkinson

Member and Firm Chair, Miller & Chevalier

The Netherlands

Hon. Rosemary Barkett

Iran-United States Claims Tribunal


Mary Boies

Boies Schiller Flexner, LLP


Nicola Bonucci

Partner, Investigations and Compliance, Paul Hastings


Scott P. Boylan

Partner, Stoneturn


Scott Carlson

Associate Executive Director for Global Programs, American Bar Association


Bruno Cova

Shareholder, European Co-Chair Restructuring & Insolvency and Compliance Groups, Greenberg Traurig

South Africa

Hon. Richard Goldstone

Supreme Court of South Africa


Hon. Thomas Griffith

U.S. Court of Appeals for District of Colombia Circuit


Hon. Yonko Grosev

European Court of Human Rights


Gerald Haddock

President and Founder, Haddock Investments


Barbara Dillon Hillas

Legal & Business Consultant


Baroness Helena Kennedy

Executive Director, International Bar Association Human Rights Institute


Ibtissem Lassoued

Partner and Head of Advisory in the Regional Financial Crime Practice, Al Tamimi & Company


Joel Martin

Former CEELI Institute Executive Director


Mary Noel Pepys

International Rule of Law Attorney


Carmen Pombo

Director, Fundacion Fernando Pombo


Robert Stein

Everett Fraser Professor of Law, University of Minnesota Law School


Steve Walther

Former Member, Federal Election Commission


Roman Wieczorek

Former CEO, Skanska AB

We couldn’t do this without our supporters

The CEELI Institute is sincerely grateful to the many individual donors, corporations, foundations, and institutions without whom we could not fulfill our mission advancing the rule of law globally, which is now more important than ever.

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Home to the CEELI Institute

The Villa Grébovka was built in the late 19th century as the summer home of Moritz Gröbe, an industrialist who made his fortune in mining and railroads. The CEELI Institute completed the Villa’s transformation into a conference and residential center in 2007.

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