Thursday, January 24, 2013

Claire Mitchell Interviewed on Washington State Marijuana Law

Claire Mitchell, LL.M. Class of 2010-2011, was recently interviewed on LXBN TV on the implementation of Washington State's vote to legalize marijuana. Claire is with Stoel Rives, in Seattle, Washington, working as an associate attorney in the Technology and Intellectual Property group. She focuses her practice on regulatory compliance and risk management within the food, animal feed, beverage, and dietary supplement industries.

Check our her interview below.  Nice, work, Claire.


Sunday, January 20, 2013

K.C. Dupps Tucker Elected Partner at Basset Law

We are pleased to announce that LL.M. Alumna K.C. Dupps Tucker was elected as a partner to the Bassett Law Firm.

K.C. joined the LL.M. program in the fall of 2007 and completed her LL.M. degree in 2008. While in the Program, K.C. served as a Graduate Assistant at the National Agricultural Law Center. K.C. earned her B.A. from Colorado College, with majors in Political Science and Theatre. She received her J.D. degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law.

While in law school, she was selected to serve as the first Corporate Extern in the Wal-Mart Legal Department. There, she worked on international service contract review, international lease preparations, and legal research and writing on international labor issues, current European Union legislation, and investor relations.

K.C. is admitted to practice before the State and Federal courts in Arkansas and the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. Her practice involves representing individuals and corporations in all phases of complex civil litigation—with a focus on environmental and agricultural issues.

The Bassett Law Firm LLP, located in Fayetteville, serves clients in Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Missouri.  The firm is included in the 2012 Martindale-Hubbell® Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers™, and has been recognized by the national publication Corporate Counsel as a full service law firm and by Fortune magazine as a “go to” litigation firm for top U.S. companies.

In addition to her practice, K.C. is active in the Northwest Arkansas community and serves as the President of the Board of Directors for the Peace at Home Family Shelter.

Congratulations K.C.!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Harvard Reception for Peter Barton Hutt

I am reposting information about this week's reception at Harvard Law School honoring Professor Peter Barton Hutt, as I learned that the poster embedded earlier did not show up on all computer platforms.

In addition, we have an update.  Thanks to the graphic talents of this year's LL.M. candidate, Nicole Civita, we were able to create a collection of photographs from Professor Hutt's LL.M. class last Fall.  We had it framed, and it is on its way to LL.M. alumna, Alli Condra.  Alli is a Fellow in the Food Policy Clinic at Harvard, and she is going to personally give the print to Professor Hutt at the reception. The print is displayed below.  A special thank you to Nicole.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Indigenous Food & Agriculture Initiative Launched

The University of Arkansas School of Law will launch the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative on Tuesday, Jan. 15. It will be the nation’s first law school initiative focusing on tribal food systems, agriculture and community sustainability.

The initiative will draw on the nationally recognized expertise of LL.M. Alumna Janie Simms Hipp, who leaves her post as the senior adviser for tribal relations to USDA Secretary Thomas Vilsack and on that of Stacy Leeds, currently the only Native American law school dean in the country. Janie will serve as director of the initiative and as visiting professor of law.

“The National Congress of American Indians applauds the creation of this new initiative,” said Jefferson Keel, president of the organization, which is the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native tribal government organization in the United States. “Ms. Hipp accomplished many important goals during her time as senior adviser at USDA, and Dean Leeds is a leader in tribal governance and land issues. The NCAI leadership has long recognized that growing and sustaining food and ag businesses is essential to stabilizing our communities, and this initiative is poised to provide leadership in this important area.”

Among its strategic plans, the initiative will provide educational and technical assistance to tribal governments, private entities and businesses engaging or entering the food sector. Other areas of research, service and education will include agriculture, health and nutrition law and policy development, professional training of government and corporate leaders, and the formation of pipeline programs to engage students at the community level and foster them through four-year higher education institutions, law and graduate opportunities.

“I am honored and thrilled to return to my alma mater and to Northwest Arkansas to assist the dean, the School of Law and the University of Arkansas in this important endeavor,” said Hipp, a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation. “The initiative we are embarking upon will support tribal governments and rural communities throughout our region and the nation in making investments in our nation’s food and energy security. When indigenous communities use their natural resources to create jobs and strengthen local communities, we all benefit.”

The Arkansas Newswire press release noted that Janie is "an attorney and graduate of the School of Law’s internationally renowned master of laws program in Agricultural and Food Law, the nation’s only advanced law degree program in agricultural and food law. She is the founder of the USDA’s Office of Tribal Relations in the Office of the Secretary and served two terms on the USDA Secretary’s Advisory Committee for Beginning Farmers and Ranchers. She also served on two delegations to the United Nations in the areas of women’s issues and indigenous issues."

“The Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative is very much in line with the University of Arkansas’s historic commitments to diverse communities and with our mission as a land grant institution,” said Sharon Gaber, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs.

Leeds is one of five commissioners of the Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform, established by Secretary Ken Salazar of the U.S. Department of Interior. The commission was created to conduct a comprehensive two year evaluation of the department’s management and administration of nearly $4 billion in American Indian trust assets and to offer recommendations on improvements in the future. She will be honored in February with the American Bar Association’s Spirit of Excellence Award for her contributions to enhancing diversity in the legal profession.

“This interdisciplinary initiative plays to the strengths of the university and the law school,” said Leeds, a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. “It will further enrich our highly acclaimed LL.M. program in Agricultural and Food Law, which has produced many of our nation’s most well-respected agriculture law and policy leaders, including Janie Hipp.”

We are delighted to welcome Janie back to Arkansas, and we look forward to many ways that the new initiative will contribute to the rich agricultural and food law curriculum we offer our LL.M. candidates.  And, we look forward to helping to further its important work.

An exciting way to start of the new year!

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.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Professor Peter Barton Hutt To Be Honored at Harvard Law School

We are proud to share the following announcement regarding Peter Barton Hutt, a visiting condensed course professor who taught Selected Issues in Food Law last Fall in the LL.M. Program.  Congratulations, Professor Hutt!