Donald Cinnamond

  • On May 25, 2021

Col. (Ret.) Donald M. Cinnamond is Lexpat’s Senior Consultant for Judicial and Court Administration.  He brings 30 years of senior leadership experience as in the U.S. federal judiciary, and another decade of experience working internationally to build justice sector and rule of law capacity abroad.

Mr. Cinnamond served as the Clerk of Court – the chief administrative officer and chief operating officer – of two United States District Courts, in the states of Florida and Oregon.  In those roles, he managed and directed teams of 75 administrative staff supporting fifteen judges across multiple courthouses in each district.  He managed all civil and criminal case administration; information technology integration and training; personnel, budget, finance and procurement activities; professional legal and management education and training programs; capital construction, renovation and facilities operations; management information and statistical reporting systems; and court performance, monitoring and evaluation systems.  This included leading his judges through the design, development, and implementation of an automated Case Management and Electronic Case Filing system, and also managing the design and construction of two new courthouse complexes, with a combined budget of a quarter-billion U.S. dollars.

Concurrently with many of his court administration duties, Mr. Cinnamond served for 25 years in the United States Army and National Guard, including several assignments leading Special Forces units.  Achieving the rank of Colonel, his responsibilities included leadership roles in defense reform and political-military liaison in post-conflict countries.

His many years of international experience in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East give Mr. Cinnamond a rare global perspective and nuanced insights into comparative legal systems and cultures, in both the civilian and military spheres.  He has served with distinction in more than a dozen countries, including Afghanistan, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Egypt, Georgia, Iraq, Jordan, Liberia, Moldova, Pakistan, Russia, Serbia, Ukraine, and Vietnam.  His roles have included several tours of duty as USAID Chief of Party and Deputy Chief of Party, as well as Team Chief, Senior Legal Advisor, or Senior Court Administration Advisor for USAID and U.S. Department of Justice missions.

Mr. Cinnamond’s accomplishments in those roles cover the full spectrum of foreign judicial and court administration foreign assistance.  He has led judicial and court administration assessments of several countries’ trial and appellate courts, evaluating judicial caseloads and workflow, case management processes, filing and service procedures, fee assessments, and enforcement of judgments.  He developed USAID’s Guidelines for Effective Court Administration, as well as a Court Reforms Best Practices Toolkit.  He has developed and implemented court performance measurement metrics and monitoring and evaluation programs; trained judges, magistrates, litigators, and administrators in court operations and case management systems; coordinated the design, procurement, and installation of secure information technology systems for judiciaries; managed operational and movement security for judicial personnel in high-risk areas, and directed the efficient operations and maintenance expenditures of several courts’ facilities.

Through each of these assignments, Mr. Cinnamond has coordinated closely with judicial, law enforcement, diplomatic, civil society, and justice sector stakeholders to develop and evaluate programs, work plans, and procurement/program funding requirements for each endeavor.  Himself a lawyer, he has also provided relevant legal technical assistance such as evaluating prevailing laws, regulations, and local court procedures relating to registration of cases, parties and commercial entities, and has provided in-depth training in investigating and prosecuting corruption-related crimes, especially corruption directed at judges and justice-sector actors.

Mr. Cinnamond earned a juris doctorate from Lewis and Clark Law School, an MPA from the University of Southern California, and a Bachelor’s in Economics from the University of California at San Diego.  He is also a graduate of the US Federal Judicial Center’s Senior Leadership Course, the US Army War College, the Army’s Command and General Staff College, and several other prestigious civilian and military leadership programs.