Saturday, January 5, 2013

Excellent LL.M. Program Representation at the Annual AALS Conference

This week, the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) is meeting in New Orleans. Although I am privileged to serve on the Executive Committee of the AALS Agricultural & Food Law Section, I was not able to attend this year's meeting.  I am pleased to report, however, that the LL.M. Program is very well represented.

One of our alumni, Alison Peck is chair of the Agricultural & Food Law section, and she developed an excellent panel presentation for the conference, "Exploring the Links Between Food & Agriculture Policy and Obesity," co-sponsored by the Section on Law, Medicine & Health Care.

Alison is an Associate Professor of Law at the University of West Virginia School of Law. She received her B.A. degree Summa cum laude from Butler University (Journalism, Spanish & French); her J.D. degree from Yale Law School, serving as Notes Editor for the Yale Law Journal; and she received her LL.M. in Agricultural Law in 2008.  She previously taught Sustainable Agriculture & the Law in the LL.M. Program and International Environmental Law in the J.D. Program at the University of Arkansas School of Law.

Alison is well regarded for her work in agricultural and food law. Last year at the AALS, I was pleased to present on a panel with Alison where she delivered an Update on USDA Regulation of Biotechnology.  Alison has written on the difficulties associated with regulating GMOs including, Levelling the Playing Field in GMO Risk Assessment: Importers, Exporters, and the Limits of Science, 28 Boston Univ. Int'l L.J. (2010) and Toward an Advocacy Strategy for GMO Accountability, 21 Geo. Int'l Envtl. L. Rev. 37 (2008).  And, last year she authored the interesting look at the history of food regulation, Revisiting the Tea Party: The History of Regulating Food Consumption in America, 80 UMKC L. Rev. 1 (2011).  Her outreach work includes presenting at the West Virginia Farm to Schools Conference, Morgantown, WV on Giving Geographic Preference for Local Foods.

The panel presentation this year will feature professors Richard A. Daynard from Northeastern University School of Law, Emily Broad Leib, Harvard Law School, Lindsay F. Wiley from American University, Washington College of Law, and Pamela A. Vesilind, an LL.M. candidate in this year's class.

Pamela came to us from the University of Vermont Law School where she was a Visiting Professor and Fellow with the Center for Agriculture & Food Systems. She has continued to work with the Center and with the Distance Learning Program at Vermont.  She now holds the title of Scholar in Residence at the University of Arkansas School of Law and serves as Adjunct Professor in addition to being an LL.M. Candidate. Pamela has written a number of recent articles on agricultural and food law topics, with a special focus on animal welfare issues associated with livestock production.  They include, Emerging Constitutional Threats to Food Labeling Reform, Chapman J. of L. & Pol'y (forthcoming), NAFTA's Trojan Horse & the Demise of the Mexican Hog Industry, 42 U. Miami Inter-Am. L. Rev. 1 (2011); and, Continental Drift: Agricultural Trade and the Widening Gap Between European Union and United States Animal Welfare Laws, 12 VT J. Envtl. L. 1 (2010). She will be one of the speakers at the upcoming 20th Annual Animal Law Conference at Lewis & Clark Law School, and her work in progress includes The Humane Methods of Slaughter Act is Unconstitutional, but That’s Not a Bad Thing.

Articles from this AALS section presentation will be published in the Spring 2013 issue of the University of Arkansas School of Law Journal of Food Law & Policy.

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