Elli Götz and Marie O’Leary are pictured with Shelly Frantz and Marie’s mother, Colleen O’Leary,” during their visit at Fritz’ Café.

Austrian visitor charmed during Springfield visit

An Austrian woman was charmed during her recent visit to Springfield. 

Elli Götz, of Vienna, accompanied Marie O’Leary to her hometown, Springfield, during a two and a half-week road trip.

During previous trips to the United States, Elli visited New York, Chicago and Washington, DC. “This time I wanted to go out into the countryside,” she said.  “There is such a big difference.” 

It was Elli’s first trip to Minnesota and Springfield, and she loved what she experienced.  

The two women became acquainted about 10 years ago when both were living in The Hague, a city on the North Sea coast of the western Netherlands, and also the home to the U.N.’s International Court of Justice. Both worked at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, a court of law dealing with war crimes that took place during the conflicts in the Balkans during the 1990s.  

Marie, daughter of Brian and Colleen O’Leary, grew up in Springfield, graduated from Springfield High School, and went to The Netherlands following her graduation from St. Thomas University.   Based upon experiences of others who had done internships there, Marie and Elli also decided to intern there. The International Court of Justice offers internships of one to three months to students and young professionals who are in the early stages of their careers.  The internship is an opportunity for them to put their knowledge and experience into practice, while performing certain tasks for the Court under the supervision of Registry officials. The working languages of the Court are English and French.  Both of the young women were intrigued by the work.

Marie continues to live and work in The Hague, now at the International Criminal Court, in the Office of Public Counsel for the Defense.

Elli returned to Vienna where she is working as a lawyer. 

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