We’re delighted to announce the appointment of two new trustees to the ICWA board, Cris Duschek (fellow in Romania, 2004-2006) and Peter Leon. Trustee Constance Whiteside is also stepping down at the end of her term and will be missed.


Peter Leon

Peter Leon is a partner and global Africa chair of the international law firm Herbert Smith Freehills. During the last decade, the international Who’s Who directories of mining lawyers, Best Lawyers, The Legal 500 (EMEA), Chambers and Partners, and other peer-reviewed global legal directories, have consistently identified him as one of the world’s pre-eminent mining lawyers. In 2021, he was named “one of the top mining lawyers in the world” and recently, Chambers Global Guide: Energy & Natural Resources: Mining 2022 ranked Peter in Band 1, with sources stating that “he brings solutions to issues you wouldn’t think of, bringing to bear relevant experience from right across Africa.”

Peter excels in helping resolve contentious issues arising from mining projects and related developments in Africa. His areas of expertise include crisis management, resource nationalism, mineral and petroleum regulation in developing countries (including international best practice), Black economic empowerment and indigenization law, international investment law and investment protection. Owing to Peter’s expertise, he has significant experience in resource regulatory issues across Anglophone Africa.

Peter’s experience also includes the Middle East, where he has recently represented the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as international legal counsel on the Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources’ mineral law reform project.

He was a council member of the Legal Practice Division of the International Bar Association responsible for the Africa Regional Forum, the chair of the International Bar Association’s mining law committee advisory board and is an honorary lecturer at the University of Dundee in Scotland’s Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy.


Cris Duschek

Cristina “Cris” Duschek, Chief Communications Officer, Paradise Advertising and Marketing, Inc. based in St. Petersburg, Florida, oversees a blend of innovative strategic communications, including external and internal communications and employee engagement. She was an ICWA fellow in Romania from 2004-2006.

Cris has created and executed communication, branding and marketing campaigns for a variety of industries and clients for more than two decades. Her experience spans an impressive clientele including Bvlgari Jewelry, PricewaterhouseCoopers (Almaty and Toronto), Gabriel Resources, Visit St. Pete/Clearwater, The Dali Museum, and JW Marco Island Beach Resort.

She has also managed internal and external communications for the University of Arizona Foundation and oversaw national media relations for Visit Tampa Bay. A former journalist, she has written and reported for a wide range of publications, including The Economist, Adweek, American Banker, and The Washington Post. Born in Bucharest, Romania, Cris grew up in New York City and spent much of her professional career working in New York and all over the globe.

Cris is a graduate of Harvard University, where she played top singles and captained her Division I tennis team. She also holds a master’s degree in journalism from New York University. Cris has been appointed to serve on Destinations International’s Public Relations and International Global Leadership committees.