Ambassador Robert Van Lierop

 

Robert F. Van Lierop's varied and distinguished career has included spells as assistant legal counsel to the NAACP in the late 1960s, as ambassador to the United Nations for the Republic of Vanuatu, as a photojournalist and film producer, and as a founding partner in the law firm of Van Lierop, Burns, and Bassett. At the United Nations during the 1980s he was influential in negotiations on important global issues, including the ending of apartheid in South Africa, and on international environmental law. He was vice president of the United Nations General Assembly in its 43rd session, Chairman of the 4th Committee (Trusteeship and Decolonization) during the 44th session, and vice chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee of the Whole during the 16th Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Apartheid and its Destructive Consequences in Southern Africa; he also served as the first chairman of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) from 1991 to 1994.