Assistant attorneys general and investigators from the Commonwealth attended a training conference conducted by the National Association of Attorneys General's Training and Research Institute from Jan. 22 to Jan. 25, 2013, in Guam
Hosted by the Office of the Attorney General of Guam, the four-day conference featured two separate training tracks: NAAGTRI's acclaimed hands on, do-as-you-learn Trial Advocacy and an interactive training based on lectures that covered topics ranging from the representation of state agencies and ethics to human trafficking and interviewing techniques.
Every Micronesian island group was represented during the training, including American Samoa.
Nine CNMI assistant attorneys general as well as the deputy attorney general participated in the trial advocacy training, which focused on real-world courtroom skills such as effective direct and cross-examination of witnesses; persuasive opening and closing statements; the mechanics for the admission of evidence; and making and responding to objections.
The week concluded with the attorney-participants conducting a full mock trial putting their newly honed skills to the test.
“I was thrilled to get to participate in the NAGTRI trial advocacy training this past week,” said assistant attorney general Nicole Driscoll said. “The training included informative lectures, but focused on workshops where we learned by doing, immediately putting new skills to the test in front of our peers and trainers. The trainers were very supportive and provided invaluable feedback. I particularly appreciated that we received real-time critiques of our work, focusing on both style and substance. All of our exercises were filmed and then reviewed with trainers so that we could see what we were doing well and where we still needed to grow. I’ll be using this training for years to come!”
All NAAGTRI instructors are veteran attorneys general from various states who are experts in the topics they covered, which made their constant critique and feedback invaluable. (Office of the Governor)