Our People

Sarra Nsir, Tunisia

General Manager of the Regulatory Institute and researcher and representative of the Regulatory Institute for Africa and the Middle East, Ms Nsir has an excellent academic background and rich experience in civil society. Currently, Ms Nsir is working towards her PhD on “Dispute Settlement Mechanism under the AfCFTA” at the Faculty of Judicial, Political and Social Sciences of Tunis, where she also teaches Property Law. Ms Nsir interned with the National Democratic Institute in the Tunisian parliament over 2020 to 2021, where she made amendment proposals, assisted in meetings with government members and analysed bills discussed in parliamentarian committees. She completed both her Masters Degree in International Commercial Law (2021) and her Law Degree (2018) at the Faculty of Judicial, Political and Social Sciences of Tunis (Tunisia). Ms Nsir is an Arabic native speaker and speaks French and English fluently.

Valerie Thomas, Portugal

Ms Thomas is the President of the Regulatory Institute ASBL, Brussels. She conducts legislative research, writes articles at www.howtoregulate.org, coordinates freelancers and comments on draft regulations. Ms Thomas has 15 years experience working in policy and programme management, both as a federal policy officer and as an adviser to the Timor-Leste government. She holds Degrees in Law (Honours) from the University of Canberra (Australia) and in Politics, Sociology and Philosophy from Murdoch University (Australia). Her Masters Degree in International Relations is from Deakin University (Australia). She was previously licenced to practice law in the Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory. Ms Thomas is a native English speaker and also speaks Portuguese.

Dr Stanislav Chernopiatov, Ukraine

Dr Chernopiatov is the Regulatory Institute’s representative for Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia. He is an Associate Professor of Law at Dnipro Humanitarian University where he teaches various subjects, including Corporate Law, Comparative Law, Theory and Practice of Law Application, Lawmaking and Legal Techniques, Principles of Judicial Proceedings, and Labor Law. He was previously an Associate Professor of Law at the Alfred Nobel University (2016-2020, Ukraine) and a Law Lecturer at the Dnipropetrovsk State University of Internal Affairs (2011-2016, Ukraine). He completed his PhD Law thesis on “Protective Labor Legal Relationships” at the Dnipropetrovsk State University of Internal Affairs in 2016. Dr Chernopiatov’s scientific interests, include: regulatory methodology; legal coercion and legal liability; and civil-like court procedures. He holds a Masters Degree in Philology (Honours, 2020, Alfred Nobel University) and from the Dnipropetrovsk State University of Internal Affairs, a Masters of Law (Honours, 2011) and Law Degree (Honours, 2009).

Outside of academia, Dr Chernopiatov worked as an Assistant to the Authorised Person for Prevention and Detection of Corruption at the Alfred Nobel University, elaborating and introducing local anti-corruption regulation, policies and practices. He has also been an assistant-consultant to the Regional Council Deputy of Dnipropetrovsk (2016-2020) and participated in the election procedure for the 2019 Ukrainian presidential election as a member of the District Election Commission. He also maintains a commercial practice for companies and natural persons, and has been the legal adviser to Makhaon-Invest LLC since 2017. He is a native Ukrainian and Russian speaker and is fluent in English.

Gitanjali Sreedhar, India

Researcher and representative of the Regulatory Institute for South Asia, Ms Sreedhar has a Bachelors Degree in History and Law Hons. She is currently pursuing a Masters of Law in Environmental Law at Stockholm University. Ms Sreedhar has worked in the National Green Tribunal, New Delhi’s special environmental courts for environmental issues and the Supreme Court of India under the mentorship of Mr Ritwick Dutta and Mr Rahul Choudhary, Trustees Legal Initiative for Forest and Environment who recently won the Right Livelihood Award. She previously worked for Clean Air Asia India as a Program Associate, working on air pollution research, capacity strengthening programmes and prepared training modules on “Level of Air Pollution”, “City Clean Air Action Plan” and “Low Emission Urban Development”. She is a native Tamil speaker and fluent in Hindi and English. 

Fabian Espinoza Valencia, Bolivia

Mr Valencia is the researcher and representative of the Regulatory Institute for South America, Central America and the Caribbean. He is a Professor of Legislation for Engineering at the EMI Military School of Engineering and currently a Doctoral candidate in Legal Sciences at the Catholic University of Argentine. He previously worked at the Chamber of Senators of Bolivia as a Legal Adviser and from time-to-time his counsel is sought on cyber-related issues. Mr Valencia is fluent in English and Portuguese and Spanish is his first language.

Bernadine Sengson, Philippines

Ms Sengson is the researcher and representative of the Regulatory Institute for East and Southeast Asia, except the Philippines. She currently works at the Legal Affairs Department of the House of Representatives in the Philippines. She previously worked as a staff of one of the Members of the House of Representatives where she drafted and analysed bills, proposed amendments to existing laws, attended discussions with various stakeholders including NGOs, and assisted in legislative committee meetings. She completed her Law Degree at the University of the Philippines in 2017 and became a member of the Philippine Bar in 2018. She also has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology (2013). She is fluent in English and Filipino is her first language.

Yurii Bilozor, Ukraine

Mr Bilozor assists the Manager with research and other projects of the Regulatory Institute. He previously worked in legal translation and currently works in international legal compliance. Mr Bilozor holds a Masters Degree in Law from the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv (2020, Ukraine). He is fluent in English and Russian, and Ukrainian is his first language.

Ajda Mihelčič, Belgium

Ms Mihelčič made the Regulatory Institute operational in 2016 and 2017. She now serves as a Board member of the Regulatory Institute ASBL, Brussels. She holds a law degree of the University of Ljubljana (Slovenia) and an Advanced Masters in Human Rights of the St. Louis University (Belgium). Ms Mihelčič is fluent in English, French and Slovenian is her first language. She understands Spanish and Dutch.

Manfred Kohler, Belgium

Mr Kohler holds two German state examinations in law and a French degree of public management (ENA). He started his career with the UNHCR and then went on to be the director of a German political asylum NGO, before joining the European institutions. In June 2001, he became the Head of the German press department of the European Parliament in Brussels and in parallel, responsible for environmental legislation. Since April 2004 he has been working for the European Commission, first by coordinating the positions of his Commission colleagues and of Member States in the UNECE forum for vehicle legislation and representing both the EU and its Member States. At that time, he revised over 100 UNECE regulations and improved the overall architecture of the regulatory system. Subsequently, he worked on the improvement of the EU law on medical devices, including new regulations. In 2018 he worked as team leader and pen-holder on a new Construction Products Regulation. For close to two decades he has contributed to dozens of other pieces of EU legislation, including some with horizontal application such as the the Market Surveillance Regulation, the Whistleblowing Directive, the General Product Safety Regulation, the Environmental Crime Directive, the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation and the Raw Materials Regulation.

In parallel to his assignments, Mr Kohler inventoried the regulatory techniques used in EU legislation. From late 2010 to early 2014, he trained over 300 colleagues in regulatory techniques and provided support for their regulatory projects. He also developed a working method for lawmakers. In 2014 he formalised the training manual he had used for training his colleagues by integrating good practices from other jurisdictions – this became the 1st edition of the Handbook. In 2015 he created howtoregulate.org and in 2016 the Regulatory Institute immediately took over the responsibility for howtoregulate.org.

Since March 2023, Mr Kohler works as an independent consultant for lawmaking and regulation. He continues his fundamental research on regulation and provides methodological input to the Regulatory Institute, namely by enlarging its knowledge-base. Moreover, he contributes to the model laws of the Regulatory Institute. Mr Kohler is fluent in English and French, understands Spanish and German is his first language. He can be contacted via the Regulatory Institute, via his LinkedIn profile or by phone: +4915206610320.