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UBC Reports | Vol. 49 | No. 5 | May 8, 2003

UBC Law Grad to be Married in Romania

Lithuanian lawyer adds UBC degree.

By Erica Smishek

From the law courts of Lithuania to the basketball courts at UBC, Linas Antanavicius has covered a lot of ground in 31 years. He’s about to cover more.

Armed with a new Bachelor of Laws from UBC, Antanavicius will article with downtown Vancouver law firm Specht & Pryer, which specializes in personal injury and corporate and commercial law, later this summer. But first he and fiancée Ann Seymour, also a new UBC law graduate, will travel to Lithuania, pick up his mother and brother, and join Seymour’s family in her native Romania for their wedding.

“I told him he has to take a break,” she says. “He hasn’t had any time off in three years.”

Her genial partner just smiles, knowing that hard work is ingrained in his character.

Born in Lithuania, 6’7” Antanavicius received a degree in civil law at Vilnius University in 1995 and also studied business law in Sweden and health legislation in Miami. He was a lawyer for the Ministry of Health in Lithuania and, at 23, was the youngest person to serve as a City Counselor in Vilnius, the capital, after the country gained independence.

“I had an interest in history and politics and had participated in the independence movement in Lithuania,” he explains of his public service. “It was good experience at such a young age. I made good connections and contacts and learned more about how political life works.”

Lithuania became the first Soviet republic to declare its independence in March 1990; the proclamation was finally recognized in September 1991 and the last Russian troops withdrew in 1993.

“The country has changed very rapidly,” says Antanavicius. “Thirteen years ago, it was hard to imagine we’d be a member of the European Union. Now there is a lot of legislation to deal with the shift from a socialist economy to a market economy but the political system is still developing.”

Determined to broaden his opportunities to practice law, Antanavicius came to UBC to study common law.

During his studies he worked at the law firm where he will article, assisted faculty members with research, conducted research for the International Legal Resources Corporation, volunteered for the UBC Law Students’ Legal Advice Program and played in the UBC Nitobe Basketball League. He serves on the Lithuanian Community of British Columbia board and established the Baltic Business Network to unite professionals from the Baltic States and assist with trade missions.

“I would like to have some clients in Europe who want to do business in Canada and some clients in Canada who want to do business in Europe,” he says of his future law career. “It would be ideal given my knowledge of both environments.”

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Last reviewed 22-Sep-2006

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