Burofocus Consulting Bureau



Dr. R.J.A. (Nilda) Arduin is a versatile professional whose experience and knowledge span several areas with specific focus on law, community advancement via laws and regulations made understandable and accessible, institutionally strengthening, and group training.

Dr. Arduin obtained her Doctorate in Science of Law in 1993 from the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. This achievement saw her tumble barriers and barricades and blaze a wide trail for other women of the Caribbean, in particular the Dutch Caribbean (then Netherlands Antilles).

Dr. Arduin's most recent distinguished post was that of Sint Maarten's first Ombudsman (2010-2018). She applied her skills and experience to this role with such passion and dedication that the newly minted Bureau Ombudsman of the micro Dutch Caribbean territory took on a leadership role regionally and internationally. Upon her request, she retired as Ombudsman with an honourable discharge by the Parliament of Sint Maarten in December 2018.

Over the years, Dr. Arduin has lend her educational, professional, and governmental knowledge in numerous positions, including second Acting Lt. Governor of the Island Territory of Sint Maarten and student counsellor for Public Management Master's Degree course.

Today, Dr. Arduin consults on various topics including law and institutional strengthening through training, via her consultancy bureau, Burofocus. She is one of the experts who delivers master classes to Members of the Sint Maarten Parliament and other such institutions.

Dr. Arduin has authored and co-authored several publications covering international Timeshare, constitutional law, political history, social and governmental policies, nation-building in the Dutch Caribbean with emphasis on Sint Maarten, and education.

Dr. Arduin was made an Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau by HRH King Willem- Alexander of the Netherlands in 2019. This royal decoration is one of several accolades for her merit and dedication to her profession and her community.


  • 2010 - 2018
  • Ombudsman Sint Maarten; Tasked with paving the way of this constitutionally required High Council of State, a first for Sint Maarten.
  • 2010 - 2010
  • Second Acting Lt. Governor of Sint Maarten;Assisted with the transition from Island Territory to an autonomous status within-the-Dutch-kingdom status.
  • 2005 - 2007
  • Student Counsellor; Master's Degree course "Public Management" course on Sint Maarten, mentoring and guiding civil servants on their academic path to obtain a master's degree.
  • 1996 - 2010
  • Managing Director/Lawyer/Consultant Consulting Bureau Burofocus Worked with local and international clients of varied background (public and private) in administrative, legal, and organizational capacities.
  • 1996 - 1998
  • Commissioner Antillean Telecommunications Company (Antelecom) Worked as a Member of the Supervisory Board to plan and oversee the strategy and development of telecommunications in the (then) Netherlands Antilles.
  • 1996 - 1998
  • Coordinator/Thesis Counsellor Law Faculty St. Maarten Campus University of the Netherlands Antilles.
  • 1988 - 1995
  • Attorney at Law Law Offices Zielinski & Halley, later Halley & Verzijl Netherlands Antilles.
  • 1985 - Present
  • Lecturer/Facilitator/Presenter/Motivational Speaker/Essayist Facilitating lectures, workshops, courses, seminars etc. on various topics.


  • 1978 - 1988
  • Secondary Education Dutch and Biology (Curaçao and St. Maarten)
  • 1974 - 1978
  • Elementary Education (Curaçao)

instructor adult education

  • 1997 - 1998
  • Buro Arends, Middle Management & Personnel Courses
  • 1986 - 1987
  • Advancement courses for civil servants St. Maarten
  • 1985 - 1988
  • Police Training Courses St. Maarten
  • 1983 - 1987
  • Government Administration Courses St. Maarten
  • 1978 - 1982
  • Shell Business School Curaçao


  • 2010 - 2017
  • Annual Reports Ombudsman Sint Maarten
  • 2010
  • The Constitution of Sint Maarten Made Simple
  • 2009
  • "Overzeesche wetgeving inzake timesharing" (Study of Overseas Timeshare Laws) WPNR 2009/6807, pp. 653-655
  • 2009
  • "Een aanzet tot het grondenproblematiek vervolgd" (Overview: An impetus to the land problem continued) S.J.B. april 2009, no. 1, pp. 91-94 (Suriname)
  • 2008
  • "Een aanzet tot het oplossen van de grondenproblematiek in het Binnenland van Suriname" (An impetus to solve the land problem in Suriname's interior) S.J.B. juli 2008, no. 2, pp.10-15 (Suriname)
  • 2006
  • The Law in Focus 2004 - 2005 Summaries and Trivia of a weekly local TV programme about the prevalent legal issues and concerns for the communities of the Netherlands Antilles
  • 2005
  • Fifty Years "Statuut": Where do we go from here, Gedenkboek "50 jaar Statuut, een Koninkrijksbundel" pp. 61-70, Walburg Pers
  • 2005
  • “Timesharing: de landsverordening regeling gebruik in deeltijd van onroerende zaken en aanpassing appartementsrecht” (Timeshare: the national ordinance for part-time use of immovable property and adaptation of apartment law) TAR-Justicia, 2005 no. 4, pp.197-210
  • 2004 - 2007
  • Timeshare in Sint Maarten The Golden Book of Sint Maarten
  • 2004
  • Essay Series - "Fifty Years Statuut" Daily Newspapers Sint Maarten
  • 1999
  • Essay Series - "Nation Building" Daily Newspapers Sint Maarten
  • 1997
  • Ontwikkeling en Armoede op de Nederlandse Antillen, een beleidsevaluatie van Sede Antia(1987-1996) (Development and Poverty in the Netherlands Antilles, a policy evaluation of Sede Antia (1987-1996) Kruÿt, D., Arduin, N., Oude Engebrink, G., Römer, C. THELA Publishers-Amsterdam, September 1997
  • 1993
  • Timesharing van onroerend goed vergeleken (A comparative study of real estate timesharing) Ars Notariatus LXIV, Kluwer-Deventer 1993
  • 1989
  • Ley pa un, ley pa tur (Law for one, law for all), Informative brochure on Labour Laws University of the Netherlands Antilles Willemstad, Curaçao

board and committee appointments

  • 2015 - 2017
  • President Caribbean Ombudsman Association (CAROA)
  • 2016 - 2018
  • Regional President for Latin America and the Caribbean International Ombudsman Institute (IOI) Board
  • 2012 - 2018
  • Director for Latin America and the Caribbean IOI Board
  • 1999 - 2005
  • Chairperson Supervisory Board Foundation Cadastre and Mortgages Sint Maarten
  • 1996 - 2001
  • Officer National UNESCO Committee Netherlands Antilles
  • 1996 - 1998
  • Commissioner Antilliaans TelecommunicatiebeDr.ijf (Antelecom)
  • 1995 - 1999
  • Chairperson Timeshare Advisory Council (Sint Maarten)
  • 1990 - 1991
  • Member Foundation Higher Education Windward Islands


  • 2004 - 2012
  • TV host of The Law in Focus, informative programme
  • 2003 - Present
  • Founder/President Foundation Focus (Creation, development and production of educational material)
  • 2002 - Present
  • Founder & Extraordinary board member Foundation The Ark (Outreach work)
  • 1998 - 2000
  • Dean Sint Maarten Bar Association
  • 1992 - 1999
  • Founder/Coordinator Women's Information Centre
  • 1991 - 2016
  • Vice President Foundation EWA (Social Awareness Movement)
  • 1989 - 1991
  • President Business & Professional Women's (BPW) Association

honours and nominations

  • March 2020
  • Qualichi Award International Women's Day, Our National Icon awarded by Governments of the Sint Maarten / Saint Martin
  • January 2019
  • Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau, Awarded by HRH King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands
  • March 2016
  • AML Award of Leadership Prominent Women Association Sint Maarten
  • 2014
  • Person of the Year The Daily Herald Newspaper (Sint Maarten)
  • 2014
  • Award of Excellence by Interfaith Kingdom Ministries, Inc. New York, USA.
  • 1997
  • Most positive role model for 1997 (Sint Maarten) Nominated by TV Talk show Host Oral Gibbs
  • 1995
  • Honour Roll 1995 for outstanding professional achievements Nominated by St. Maarten Guardian newspaper (Sint Maarten)
  • 1993
  • First Antillean woman to obtain doctorate in Science of Law Recognized by the Netherlands Antilles government
  • 1993
  • First UNA Law Faculty graduate to obtain doctorate degree in Science of Law, recognized by the University of the Netherlands Antilles
  • 1993
  • First Antillean postgraduate to obtain a Doctor of Law degree at The Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, recognized by the University Board