The International Bar Association, the world’s leading organization of over 200 bar associations and law societies and over 45,000 legal practitioners, will for the first time ever have a Secretary-General from Central & Eastern Europe. Martin Šolc, one of the founding partners of Czech law firm Kocián Šolc Balaštík (KŠB), will assume the office of Secretary-General in January 2013.
The Secretary-General is the third ranking position in the IBA, after the President and Vice-President. As a rule, Secretaries-General usually make it to the very top of the IBA.
“I am very honoured to be elected Secretary-General. I take it not only as a sign of recognition of my more than 20-year involvement in the IBA but also as a sign of appreciation of the role Czech lawyers and the Czech Bar Association play in the international legal community,” said Martin. In his two-year term as Secretary-General, Martin plans to concentrate primarily on maintaining the IBA as an institution representing the global voice of the legal community. However, he would also like to initiate discussion on changing how the IBA operates, such as whether to provide online membership and virtual access to conferences and seminars to those who cannot afford to travel and whether and how the IBA should boost its regional involvement.
The election of Martin as Secretary-General took place at the IBA Annual Conference 2012 held in Dublin in October, which was attended by over 4,000 lawyers and legal professionals. Martin was elected by representatives from more than 200 bar associations and law societies from all across the globe.
While serving as Secretary-General, Martin – whose role as KŠB’s Managing Partner was taken over by Dagmar Dubecká in January 2012 – will also continue to be active and involved in KŠB’slegal practice and strategic decisions.
“I would like to extend my warm congratulations to Martin – his personal success also has a positive influence and boosts the international position and reputation of the Czech Bar Association. Despite being extremely busy, Martin has always devoted time to the Czech Bar when necessary and let us hope he will continue to do so. On behalf of the Czech legal community, I’d like to wish him good health and all the best in his new role,” said Martin Vychopeň, Chairman of the Czech Bar Association, in response to Martin’s election as Secretary-General.
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Martin Šolc is one of the founding partners of Kocián Šolc Balaštík. He graduated from the Faculty of Law of Charles University in Prague and was admitted to the Czech Bar Association in 1982. Martin specializes in mergers & acquisitions, corporate law and restructuring and was named a leading Czech expert in these areas by international legal ranking directories (Chambers, IFLR 1000, PLC Which Lawyer, Legal 500). Martin is active in the International Bar Association (IBA), wherehis positions have included Chair of the Public and Professional Interest Division (one of IBA’s two divisions) in 2007 – 2008 and Co-Chair of the Human Rights Institute in 2009 – 2010. Martin Šolc was additionally Chair (1994) and Co-Chair (1990 – 1993 and 1995 – 1998) of the Czech Bar Association.