One of the central duties of the President’s judicial administrative tasks is to assign judges from the Roster of International Judges to Panels and cases that come before the Specialist Chambers. The President has been recommended by the independent Selection Panel to be appointed by the Appointing Authority. Unlike the other Judges on the Roster of International Judges, the President serves on a full-time basis. The President is the Presiding Judge on any Supreme Court Panel upon which she sits. The President of the Specialist Chambers is Judge Ekaterina Trendafilova.
Dr Ekaterina Trendafilova (1953), a renowned lawyer, academic and judge from Bulgaria, has been appointed to the position of the President of the Kosovo Specialist Chambers as of December 2016, and took her office on 12 January 2017.
President Trendafilova has a distinguished legal career and extensive experience in criminal law and procedure, international criminal justice, humanitarian law and human rights.
She served as a Judge of the International Criminal Court (ICC) from March 2006 to March 2015. Throughout her term of office at the ICC, she served as a Judge in the Pre-Trial Division (as Presiding Judge of Pre-Trial Chamber II and as President of the Pre-Trial Division). Judge Trendafilova was a member of the Appeals Chamber in the first two final appeals in the cases of the Prosecutor v. Thomas Lubanga Dyilo and the Prosecutor v. Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui, as well as in a number of interlocutory appeals.
Prior to her service at the ICC, President Trendafilova advised the Ministry of Justice on the establishment of the ICC and served as an expert to the Ministry of Justice and the Parliament of Bulgaria where she chaired the Criminal Division of the Legislative Consultative Council. She was the head of the working group on the reform of the Bulgarian Criminal Procedure Code in line with European and international standards for efficient administration of justice and protection of human rights (1998-1999). Dr Trendafilova represented Bulgaria at the UN Commission for Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (1992-1994). She was also a deputy district attorney at the Sofia District Court (1985-1989) as well as a barrister with the Sofia bar (1995-2006).
President Trendafilova has been a Humboldt (1993-1994) and a Fulbright scholar (1997). She completed her PhD in 1984 and is a renowned scholar. She has published and lectured extensively in the field of criminal procedure, human rights, international and comparative criminal justice. Dr Trendafilova is a prominent member and president of a number of legal associations.