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International business law expert to receive Distinguished UConn Alumni Award (Released: 4/30/97)

by Elizabeth Omara-Otunnu, Office of University Communications.

STORRS, Conn. -- Lionel Olmer is this year's recipient of the University of Connecticut Alumni Association's Distinguished Alumni Award for professional and civic achievement.

Olmer, a native of New Haven, graduated from the University in 1956 with a bachelor's degree in liberal arts. He also holds a law degree from American University in Washington, D.C., and is a graduate of the National Defense University.

A member of the Connecticut and Washington, D.C., bar associations, Olmer specializes in international business law, representing a broad range of U.S. and foreign manufacturers and service companies concerned with the protection of intellectual property rights, export controls and market access.

He also is a member of the board of directors of the International Rescue Committee, a voluntary agency that aids in the relief and resettlement of refugees, and is chair of the Citizens Commission on Afghan Refugees.

In the early 1970s, Olmer served for five years on the staff of the president's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, a board of private citizens established by President Eisenhower.

In 1977 he joined Motorola, where he coordinated the company's successful effort to become the first American supplier of high-technology products to Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Public Corp., which was at that time a Japanese government-owned monopoly.

From 1981 - 1985, Olmer served as under secretary of commerce for international trade in the Reagan administration. His responsibilities included managing trade promotion, export control regulations and trade law remedies for the U.S. government.

Olmer, now a partner in the law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, will receive the award at a reception May 16.

First presented in 1956, the Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes outstanding alumni of the University for their achievements. The recipients are selected by a committee of the association's board of directors, alumni volunteers, and faculty.