DEAR AIJA NETWORK,
I’M ANNA WYRZYKOWSKA
Thank you very much for visiting my webpage! It was created to give you some information about myself and what I stand for as I am running to be elected for the position of the Vice-President of AIJA. I hope you will enjoy reading it and I can count on your support! Please don’t forget to register for the first online AIJA annual congress at 2020congress.aija.org
My message
Dear AIJA network, dear friends,

As announced some time ago, being already devoted to your service as AIJA Treasurer, I would like to contribute and work for AIJA and its members even more by applying for election as the Vice President of AIJA.
I couldn’t be happier to see that my decision was received so well with such positive feedback from members of different nationalities, various business backgrounds, industries and legal practices.

I am a member of AIJA since 2013 engaging in its activities first as a speaker on dozens of seminars and congresses, then as head of the Organising Committee of the Half Year Spring Congress in Warsaw in May 2018 and for almost two years now as Bureau member in the function of Deputy Treasurer and Treasurer.

We are all confronted with the new reality after the outbreak of the pandemics worldwide. I sincerely hope that you and everyone close to you is doing well. The world changed but this is also an opportunity to reflect on where we stand and on what is important for AIJA and its members.

The previous elections demonstrated how diversified we are and that we can have different views on what’s best for our Association. Let’s use our diversity and swarm intelligence to enrich AIJA with it. Let’s discuss constructively our joint future around ideas and strategies that will make AIJA flourish. This requires a joint determination and involvement on many different levels, but only teamwork will lead to greater opportunities and achievements.
There I am willing to work for each and every one of you encouraging you to unify in our efforts to make AIJA grow more. We need to understand how lucky we are to be associated in such a wonderful professional structure. The time spent at our events, shared with colleagues and friends, is something exceptional. Yet we should not forget that this is a professional platform which should serve us for our professional goals too. Also we should not forget that AIJA is one of the five global legal associations and its voice should be heard and visible in our legal industry.
I see AIJA as a global, inclusive and integrating network of innovative, creative and engaged lawyers working together for a better future for our profession. AIJA has huge potential for all of us when we join our energy for our network to develop and for our Association to expand its reach globally and to enhance its quality and content. We already have the most amazing and irreplaceable AIJA spirit! Now let’s take that further and grow professionally with AIJA!

I am determined to dedicate myself to lead AIJA to its bright future ahead using all my professional experience and I would be most honoured if you chose me as your President to proudly represent you and your interests in AIJA.


Let’s make #all4aija and #aija4all!

Yours faithfully,
Anna Wyrzykowska
My BIO
About
I was born in Warsaw, Poland and this is where I am practicing law for 17 years now.
I have graduated from the faculty of law and administration at the University of Warsaw and the School of American Law at the Centre for American Law Studies (University of Florida). After that I have obtained a master’s degree in French and European business law from the University of Poitiers (France) where I completed postgraduate studies (D.E.S.S. du droit français et européen des affaires), followed by postgraduate studies at the Warsaw School of Economics ‘The Legal Basis of the Construction Process’. I have also completed an official internship organised for foreign advocates by the Paris Bar as part of the EFB (Ecole de Formation professionnelle des Barreaux de la Cour d'Appel de Paris), during which I worked for the Paris-based law firm De Pardieu Brocas Maffei.
I am admitted to the Warsaw Advocates’ Bar and a partner in one of the leading independent Polish law firms WKB, Wierciński, Kwieciński Baehr, Poland, in which I am already working for more than 8 years focusing my practice on real estate and M&A transactions as well as corporate law.
Within the firm I am heading a Real Estate team of six wonderful lawyers and am co-heading our French desk.
I am a lecturer on corporate and real estate law at The Warsaw Bar Association and a co-author of several publications, including Corporate Governance Review Polish Chapter edited by The Law Review, and two commentary books Limited Liability Companies: A Practical Guide and recently published Liability of Members of Capital Company Governing Bodies.
I am a member of AIJA since 2013 engaging in its activities first as a speaker on dozens of seminars and congresses, then as head of the Organising Committee of the Half Year Spring Congress in Warsaw in May 2018 and for almost two years now as Bureau member in the function of Deputy Treasurer and Treasurer.  
I am not a social media animal but those who know me are also aware that while working as a lawyer I am also a wife, mother of 11 year old Zuzanna and 9 year old Gabriela, passionate about non-challenging sport activities, interior design, football and Pearl Jam.
My Programme  |  AIJA COLOURS
AIJA is wearing rainbow colours this year as we have a year of diversity proclaimed by our President Paola Fudakowska. But the rainbow is not just about colours for me. Actually each of them represents values, attributes and qualities AIJA should stand for. Values we should support, maintain and work on in order to make AIJA grow and us to grow with AIJA.
Red
Red is already an AIJA colour. It represents passion but also action. We all know that AIJA is not just a professional network. It becomes for us a network of professional friends. Red also stands for strong – which we want AIJA to be. We need to use our joint power and our joint voice to make a difference in our legal profession. In times of COVID-19 or post COVID-19 and constant problems with violation of Human Rights or application of the Rule of Law – we need to understand that as one of the five important legal associations worldwide, we are legal representatives and ambassadors of our profession, i.e. ambassadors of Human Rights’ protection and safeguards of the Rule of Law. The present times prove that violation of these crucial rights and principles are not abstract problems not existing in current reality. As business oriented lawyers, we should not lose the legal foundlings of our profession from our perspective.
  • We should therefore empower the Human Rights Committee as AIJA’s ambassadors to strengthen the role of AIJA in the legal industry in that respect but also to be able to react, impact or make a change whenever it is needed. We should undertake initiatives oriented on Human Rights and activities visible and considerate in legal world. Our Human Rights Committee should also work internally within AIJA to remind all of our members during our events through different initiatives (giving also networking opportunities) that above all AIJA supports and protects Human Rights.
  • AIJA is one of the five leading international legal associations and it has a role to represent and defend the Rule of Law, especially given events and incidents in some jurisdictions, and particularly mine. We should understand that lawyers worldwide, especially our members may seek AIJA’s support as an international voice in the legal profession. I therefore propose to appoint a new Rule of Law Committee safeguarding the Rule of Law and legal values or to extend the responsibilities of the Human Rights Committee in that scope (and consequently adjust its name).
  • We need AIJA to be strong and unified. Individual initiatives will only succeed if AIJA grows as a whole. The progress in attracting new members by a commission is always the result of initiatives of the OC’s of events but also of an amazing AIJA team in Brussels and other engaged lawyers, especially those in the Bureau or the Extended Bureau. In order to make AIJA grow we need to encourage our members to cooperate as one team.
  • If we look at the number of specific commissions in other associations we should consider creating new commissions to attract potential members that we aren't sufficiently reaching yet today. Let’s also  support different initiatives to create new interest groups or discussion groups, which could gather practitioners from different commissions and allow them to discuss cross practice topics or trends. Under the supervision of the current commission’s officers, different sectors or law specific interests groups could be created which could also allow members to cooperate with other commissions and to grow their network based on their joint experiences in for example: insurance, media, public law or administrative law, regulatory, logistics, automotive, aerospace and aviation, mining etc. This would allow members to find joint platforms of cooperation and personal promoting, at the same time enriching AIJA’s offer and content.
Orange
Orange stands for energy and creativity which is of course linked with our youth (extended until age of 45). Lets’ turn our youthful enthusiasm into determination to think outside the box of the traditional legal profession and to innovate. We ought to be the group of innovative lawyers updated on current legal trends, new technologies, Artificial Intelligence, etc. to create a network of technology oriented lawyers. COVID-19 only revealed how digital tools and AI technology is important in our profession.
  • I want to appoint a NewTech Working Group in AIJA to perform researches for innovative solutions and technology novelties, introducing Legal Tech and AI also to AIJA. The new tech enthusiast would test and comment the products and solutions which could follow the trends for AIJA and its members. Each commission should appoint their representative to work in this new group so that we make sure that the new tech solutions are accessible to all lawyers and all legal industries and practices. COVID-19 and immediate digitalisation of our work revealed how important technology is in our professional life.
  • We also should develop a structured cooperation with external researchers which could help the NewTech AIJA Working Group to conduct its studies. A partnership with NewTech and AI companies that have relevant technology for the legal industry could allow them to teach us on one hand but also give them an opportunity to advertise their services to our members.
  • Based on this experience AIJA can provide training to its members (under the supervision of our dear SCILL Commission). I see the role of the SCILL commission as a horizontal commission not only organising individual coaching lessons but also focusing on research, analysis, trainings and work for the benefit of our members.
  • Let’s try to conduct the researches together with other organisations such as IBA, UIA, ABA, who will conduct their own analysis (supported by larger law firms using AI tools) to which we can have access for our members. They can only benefit from such cooperation with AIJA given the likely bigger knowledge of our members on new technology and their more advanced user experience.
  • Since the future of law firms is said to be outsourcing activities like HR, marketing, accounting or IT, the AIJA members and their member firms can be an interesting platform also for them to introduce their services globally within a more structured cooperation. Training our members to be more entrepreneurial and business oriented will also allow them to get more support from their firms to be more involved in AIJA.
Yellow
Yellow expresses the happiness which for me is simply AIJA spirit. Let’s not lose it in our day to day work and let’s remember that our Association is a platform for all of us! The diversity and inclusiveness should not be left as slogans. Let’s truly integrate people and each and every new member who is entering the AIJA world.
  • I support the idea of creating an AIJA app (even with the limited resources we might have in post-COVID times) to increase the interaction between members outside our events in one integrated tool for easier communication, consultation of the members directory and use of the referral dashboard. Today not everyone is following the MyAIJA webpage on a daily basis and because of that different queries remain unanswered unfortunately. The app should of course be absolutely safe and protect our data as a supportive tool to enforce the strength of our main and traditional networking opportunities that will remain the key focus of AIJA.
  • Let’s integrate people not only in closed WhatsApp groups but also through official platforms that include information on social life or hobbies. You like windsurfing or you are single mother or heading to the rock concert and looking for people loving the same? – use the social networking dashboard or the AIJA app to express the AIJA spirit not only during AIJA events, but let’s make our AIJA spirit a lifestyle. We all experienced how important this was during COVID-19 confinement. Let’s not lose touch now we’re back to business!
  • To make all new members and new comers at events feel welcome, I propose to have an AIJA patron appointed for every one of them not only during a single event (AIJA buddy) but during the entire first year of their membership. An older colleague would make sure that the new member gets to experience the AIJA spirit the very first day of membership and is introduced to all AIJA opportunities! This would be our special care symbol just like our very own Home Hospitality concept that would allow us to reach out to new members who are less brave to bluff their ways into AIJA tripping.
Green
Green represents nature. Thanks to our wonderful congress in Rome last year we are aware what #sustainability means. Let’s not leave this only to last year’s adventure. Let’s try to make our activities and events truly sustainable.
Green represents also the wellbeing of our members, which we want to stimulate despite the challenges of our profession. AIJA should help us to find a healthy work life balance and to overcome the difficulties we might find in our professional life but also in our private life which is affected with our professional duties.
  • Our knowledge on #sustainability that we have gained during the Rome congress should be put in action. Let’s convene an AIJA Eco Forum (ecology enthusiasts) to tell us what we as AIJA members as well as the Association could do to make our planet healthier, e.g. use sustainable materials during our events, take initiatives which would help to integrate climate friendly actions, ... and even more important to follow up on the actions taken and the results that are achieved. Who else should work on the climate if not us for ourselves, our kids or future AIJA members when we leave AIJA. We, people representing still young generations, should learn and teach in AIJA how to implement different solutions in law firms so that our members can further implement them in their countries. AIJA needs to be a modern and innovative platform to discuss but also implement necessary and practical solutions to our private and professional lives
  • Within the SCILL commission I see also a potential to increase the scope of interest not only to develop our careers but also to take care of our wellbeing. Sadly it is confirmed that a huge number of active lawyers suffer from depression or burn out. Our profession is challenging but we are already lucky to be associated in AIJA, the best association ever not only to grow professionally but also to get friends for life. The asset of our Association is that we build a professional network being not really concentrated on our professional life only. We are happy when we spend time together, we embrace the AIJA spirit but we need to truly support each other not only in good but also in bad times. COVID-19 or no COVID-19. I propose to extend the SCILL commission’s interest to topics such as work life balance, difficulties in combining the clients’ or firms’ requirements with our family duties, trends on how to implement different wellbeing solutions into firms or our legal practice or how to search for help individually, also in AIJA if help is needed.
Blue
Blue is the colour of the sky and sea and is associated with stability. It symbolizes trust, confidence, intelligence, and reliability. AIJA should be a stable, communicative and reliable towards members. But blue is also associated with confidence and reliability which are attributes of our profession. Just as professional we are in our day-to-day work, we should work for our Association to make it as professional as it can be. We constantly need to work on quality but not only focus on quality of events (which already are fantastic due to the enormous work of the AIJA Brussels team) but also on the quality of services and content AIJA can provide to members.
  • With the help of our AIJA team in Brussels, a constantly working APC and members of the organising committees, we are already super good in organising successful events. However, AIJA is a professional organisation and apart from events which will always remain excellent experience, we should put even more efforts into improving the content also in other forms of activities I propose to undertake. This is important to attract new members and to convince law firms that sending their lawyers to AIJA events or allowing them to work for the Association is worth it. The pandemics also revealed that we need to search for other networking opportunities than just in person events.
  • The professionalization of AIJA will depend on the work of each and every member of our Association. However there are some initiatives that we could implement helping our members to express themselves and work for the benefit of the Association while getting additional visibility. Other than our strong and solid online program of webinars, I propose to create an AIJA Review which would include articles prepared by our members. In a digital era we don’t need to include additional costs in printing these materials. We could include the content of the AIJA Review on our AIJA app or myAIJA webpage. This would be an immense advertising option and personal branding opportunity for our members other than being a speaker during our events or webinars. I think we should appoint a special Written Content Committee making sure that all contributions are at the appropriate level suitable for our excellent Association, are in merits and are interesting.
  • Professionalization is linked with services that AIJA can provide to its members not only by way of promoting them during events. Personal branding requires individual actions and training. This is why I see the position of our SCILL Commission as one of the leading in AIJA for our personal development. I propose to design and hold a set of joint trainings for our members introducing them into the legal profession branding and navigating them through external law reviews and publications allowing members to promote themselves (e.g. GLG, Lexology, Law reviews), all existing international rankings (e.g. Legal 500, Chambers and Partners, ILFR etc.) and all other forms of promotion. The publishers, rankings or firms performing trainings (e.g. training on submissions to the rankings) should be interested in cooperating with AIJA and as a consequence support AIJA and its members.
Violet
Violet is the colour of tradition which we should never forget. AIJA will turn 60 in 2022! AIJA is built on a wonderful concept of exchange of generations to allow young lawyers to grow and step in their older colleagues’ shoes. However if we stay connected with former members, the current members will only benefit from that not only to derive experience and knowledge but also to maintain an important business network and to encourage them to build new networks!
  • I strongly believe that we should not loose connection with our alumni. We can only benefit from staying connected. Next to the event dedicated especially to alumni we are already organising now, I propose to develop a network of former AIJA members who could update their contact details. Just imagine that you can discover a mutual experience of being an AIJA member with someone you meet professionally. It always gives additional value to such relation and the opportunities to make our network grow within AIJA will get even bigger. IBA has its Senior Lawyers Committee - why not create something similar managed by a selected group of our dear honorary members.
  • AIJA should also secure its members a smooth transition to any other association (to secure AIJA “afterlife”). We should therefore help our members to understand what can be different other opportunities, how other associations work and what is best to choose. We should educate and inform. On the other hand other associations should understand that it is in their interest to provide us with information but also to grant incentives to our members, e.g. free of charge membership or participation in other conferences just to get to know other associations. We should align with others for our members.
The official rainbow colours are these above but I would add of course:
White
White which stands for simplicity and clarity as simple and clear it should to be to stay active and grow in AIJA which should remain inclusive. White is also transparency on which AIJA should be based. Our structure, corporate governance, modus operandi, decisions, information should be clear and encouraging new people to be engaged in working for the Association. We don’t need a revolution in AIJA corporate governance structures to grow. We just need to refresh the understanding on different functions to empower people to act. In times of COVID-19 when online programs allow us to easily dial in to meetings, I think we should keep online versions of Executive Committee meetings as a rule not only viable during pandemics. It will allow for better communication of the Associations’ actions and plans.  White also stands for diversity. We should support not only social or sex diversity but regional, background and national diversity in AIJA’s corporate governance and activity. The more we grow, the more diverse we are. The more diverse we are, the more we can learn and the bigger perspective we get on our profession and future.
Black
Black is commonly associated with formal. We should not forget we are a formally run association of lawyers with its predominant professional goals and although we all feel AIJA is our love and place we get friends for life – we should manage the Association as professionally as we can.  Black recently gained importance as a message as simple as it is – absolutely no colour importance in any and all our activities! We should support all initiatives to remind also the legal industry about racial equality and how important is to eliminate any symptoms of racism.
Pink
Pink obviously should stand for feminine. I hated pink all my life. Now I love it! Our organisation brings together many wonderful women, great lawyers. It does not mean that women are there because of the parity obligation. We are there because we are qualified and empowered to show we can work together with men on merits eliminating any discrimination. Gender diversity (as any other diversity) is extremely important, but we should rather educate and encourage integration than to divide people in different opposing groups or discussing parties. We are a professional network of different people. Let’s  be joined by our qualifications and meritocracy! Let’s not differentiate as feminists! Let’s cooperate based on mutual respect and qualifications! After all we are all just lawyers.
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