LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – Stephen W. Snively has been appointed as Honorary Consul for the Republic of Namibia in the State of Florida. On August 20, 2007, he was commissioned by Honorable Marco Hausiku, Minister of Foreign Affairs, based on the instruction of His Excellency Mr. Hifikepunye Pohamba, President of the Republic of Namibia.
An “honorary consul” is a citizen of one country who has certain official diplomatic privileges and responsibilities to act as a representative for a foreign country, as provided in the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations of 1963. In the United States, such a person must be accredited by the U.S. State Department.
His Excellancy Patrick Nandago, Ambassador of the Republic of Namibia to the United States, announced the appointment in Washington, D.C. “We asked Mr. Snively to serve as Honorary Consul because of the great interest he has shown in our country, and welcome opportunities to promote tourism, investment, trade, educational opportunities and cultural exchanges between Florida and Namibia.” (www.namibianembassyusa.org)
“It is an honor and awesome responsibility to serve as Honorary Consul,” Snively said. “Namibia is an incredible country with a compelling history and wonderful people. I humbly welcome this new challenge, the confidence and trust that the government and people of Namibia have placed in me.”
Snively is a partner and real estate attorney in the Orlando, Florida office of the international law firm of Holland & Knight LLP, where he represents financial institutions, investors, developers, operators of retail centers, office buildings, residential developments, warehouses and other types of commercial real estate. (www.hklaw.com)
He is also the founder and president of Scholarships for Namibia, Inc., a charitable organization which provides scholarships at the Polytechnic of Namibia to train land surveyors to assist in the national resettlement effort. (www.scholarshipsfornamibia.org)
Namibia is located on the west coast of Africa north of South Africa and, on March 21, 1990, was the last country on the continent to gain its independence. It is blessed with stunning landscapes, peaceful people, rich cultural traditions, exotic wildlife, a progressive democratic government and an incredible wealth of natural resources. Although it sets an example for other African nations in many ways, it is also burdened with the legacy of a colonial history and seventy years of apartheid rule, poverty and a staggering HIV/AIDS rate. (www.grnnet.gov.na)
“Namibia is at a crossroads in its history,” says Snively. “To break the cycle of poverty and disease, the government is pursuing the resettlement of formerly disadvantaged Namibians from areas of urban poverty to small farms and planned communities. Resettlement will help to strengthen families, reduce poverty and slow the spread of HIV/AIDS.” That effort is impeded by a scarcity of land surveyors in the country. Without surveyors, land can not be described. If land can not be described, it can not be conveyed and owned. If it is not owned, it can not be pledged for bank loans to buy goats, seed and fertilizer, and does not provide families the assurance that they can live together in the future. “This is why land surveyors are critical to the future of Namibia,” he adds.
Snively was honored recently at the Polytechnic of Namibia for the scholarship program he has established. The event was covered by the national media, including the major newspapers (The Namibian, New Era and Republikein) and the official television network (Namibian Broadcasting Corporation).
He is admitted to practice law before the Illinois Supreme Court (1975), the Florida Supreme Court (1980) and the Supreme Court of the United States (1980). After receiving his B.A. at the University of Illinois in 1971, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, he earned his J.D. at the University of Illinois College of Law in 1975. Snively holds the highest rating assigned by Martindale-Hubbell and is listed in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in American Law, and Who’s Who in the Southeast.
His professional memberships include the American Bar Association, the International Council of Shopping Centers and ULI – The Urban Land Institute. He serves on the Editorial Board of Shopping Center Legal Update, a publication of the International Council of Shopping Centers.
He is the author of numerous published articles and has served a variety of local civic organizations, including as chairman of The Foundation for Orange County Public Schools, Inc. and the HCF Foundation, Inc., a hospice organization.