Wash. U.’s Crimes Against Humanity Initiative

The president and chief financial officer of PDS Tech, Inc., Steven Cash Nickerson brings his experience in law and business to his work with the Irving, Texas, agency. A graduate of Washington University in St. Louis, Steven Cash Nickerson earned a master of business administration and a juris doctor from the institution. Named a distinguished alum of the Washington University School of Law in 2013, Cash Nickerson works on and helps support the institution’s Crimes Against Humanity Initiative.

Since 2008, Washington University School of Law has run the Crimes Against Humanity Initiative within the Whitney R. Harris World Law Institute. Run by a seven-member Steering Committee, this organization researches ways to stop and penalize crimes against humanity. Adopting a four-phase process, it is currently undertaking Phase IV, which involves raising global awareness for the importance of a specialized conference on this issue.

In 2013, the Crimes Against Humanity Initiative saw some of its achievements being adopted by the United Nations (UN) International Law Commission. On July 30, the UN voted to enhance the definition of “crimes against humanity” for its long-term work program. This alternation came in response to the dedication of Whitney R. Harris World Law Institute director Leila Nadya Sadat. Sadat and the rest of the Crimes Against Humanity Initiative members spent the previous five years acquiring information and drafting a treaty focused on combating this problem. The UN’s recognition of the organization’s work showcased its commitment to remedying a lack of power in international criminal law when responding to violators.

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