Friday, July 24, 2015

Nicole Civita Accepts Teaching Position at Sterling College, Continues Affiliation with LL.M. Program

Nicole Civita
Nicole Civita
We are pleased to congratulate our alumna, colleague, and friend, Nicole Civita, for her appointment to the faculty at Sterling College in Vermont.  Nicole will teach in their Sustainable Food Systems curriculum and serve as the Assistant Director of the Rian Fried Center for Sustainable Agriculture & Food Systems.

With the school motto of "Working Hands. Working Minds," Sterling College was one of the first U.S. colleges to link a liberal arts education with ecology, outdoor education, and sustainable agriculture. The new Rian Fried Center for Sustainable Agriculture & Food Systems furthers this mission.  Nicole's longstanding commitment to the development of a more sustainable food system, combined with her demonstrated academic excellence make her a natural fit for this new position.

Nicole came to the LL.M. Program in August 2012, moving with her family from Los Angeles where she practiced law as an Associate Attorney with Hogan Lovells. Although her practice had been based on employment law, her passion was food law, and our Program served as a critical transition for her.

Following completion of the LL.M. Program, we asked Nicole to stay with us as a Visiting Assistant Professor to help with the launch of our new distance track for the LL.M. Program and the associated expansion of our curriculum. In that role, she helped to design distance courses throughout our curriculum, working closely with our colleagues at the UA Global Campus.  And, she developed and taught our LL.M. courses in Urban Agriculture and Food Justice Law & Policy.  She also took over the leadership of our Food Recovery Project, publishing the widely circulated article, Food Recovery: A Legal Guide, and speaking all over the country at food waste and food recovery conferences.

We are delighted to announce that Nicole will remain connected to our Program as an Affiliated Professor. In that role, she will continue to serve as the Director of the Food Recovery Project and continue to represent us at national legal conferences. She will also teach courses for us via distance, this Fall teaching Urban Agriculture, and teaching Food Justice Law & Policy spring semester.

While we will greatly miss Nicole's regular presence on campus, her new position represents an exciting opportunity for her, and we applaud her success.  We extend our appreciation to her for all of her work in helping us to expand our Program and for her commitment to agricultural and food law excellence.  We wish her great success in her new position at Sterling and look forward to continuing to work with her in furtherance of our efforts here.

Monday, July 20, 2015

John Oliver Highlights Food Waste and our Food Recovery Guide

Screen shot from Last Week Tonight broadcast 
We were proud to have Nicole Civita, Director of our Food Recovery Project help to provide background information for the recent segment on food waste that appeared on John Oliver's Show, Last Week Tonight.  And, our project, Food Recovery: a Legal Guide, was featured.

Our work on food recovery and the reduction of food waste has been a critical part of our outreach since we received our first grant from the Women's Giving Center to create the Food Recovery Project and produce the Guide.  James Haley was the Food Recovery Project Research Fellow and wrote A Legal Guide to The Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act.  Affiliated Professor Nicole Civita took over as Director of the Food Recovery Project and produced the guide that Mr. Oliver referenced.  That Guide has now been downloaded nationwide, helping to convince many businesses to donate food rather than discard it.

And, a shout out to our good friend and colleague, Emily Broad Lieb who is interviewed in the Oliver segment, featuring her excellent work with NRDC on the Dating Game: How Confusing Date Labels Lead to Food Waste in America.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

LL.M. Alumni Advancing Homegrown By Heroes Program

Independence Day is a particularly good day to announce an exciting new farmer-veterans initiative spearheaded by two of our LL.M. alumni. We are very proud of their work and the new initiative.

On July 2, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, the Arkansas Agriculture Department and the Arkansas Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Farmers Veterans Coalition announced the Arkansas Farmer-Veteran Initiative, the Arkansas Grown - Homegrown by Heroes program.

Founded by the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, the Homegrown by Heroes program provides a certified labeling opportunity that gives consumers the opportunity to show their recognition and appreciation to veterans by purchasing the agricultural products they raise. The endeavor is now operated by Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC), and it is spreading state-by-state. Arkansas is the latest of more than 40 states that have signed on.

AR Agric. Sec. Wes Ward, Gov. Asa Hutchinson, FVC Counsel, Jason Foscolo
Our LL.M. Alumnus, Jason Foscolo of The Food Law Firm serves as General Counsel and Chief Operations Officer for the FVC and was on hand for the announcement.  Arkansas Agriculture Secretary Wes Ward, another of our alumni, is credited with bringing the program to Arkansas, working with the assistance of the Arkansas Department of Veterans Affairs and the support of Governor Hutchinson. We are extremely proud to have these two distinguished Marine Veterans representing our LL.M program.

The Arkansas Grown - Homegrown by Heroes program. is designed to give Arkansas veteran farmers an additional marketing tool, to encourage Veterans to pursue careers in agriculture, and to recruit more Veterans to Arkansas. Because a diverse agriculture is such an important aspect of Arkansas's economy - it has an impact of more than $20 billion annually - there are many opportunities for Veterans in Arkansas agriculture.

The program is open to any veteran and active duty, National Guard or Reserve member. Businesses or operations certified by the Homegrown by Heroes Arkansas Grown label must maintain veteran ownership of 50 percent or more. Businesses must be an approved member of the Arkansas Grown program before certification for use of the merged label.

Program requirements and benefits include:

  • Products certified under the merged label must meet food safety guidelines applicable to their products in the regions in which the products are being distributed and/or sold;
  • The Farmer Veteran Coalition, part of the Homegrown by Heroes program, will work with applicants to determine food safety requirements;
  • The coalition's food-safety experts will help plan and execute food safety measures;
  • Business planning, financial consultation and legal assistance will be provided during and after the certification process.

We encourage everyone to look for the Homegrown by Heroes whenever shopping!  Happy Fourth of July to all, and a special shout of appreciation to our veterans.  

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Alumni News: Adam Soliman

LL.M Alum Adam Soliman joins the Visiting Scholars Program at Harvard Law School 

We are pleased to report that LL.M. Alum Adam Soliman will be joining the Visiting Scholar Program at Harvard Law School during the 2015-2016 academic year. 

While there, Adam will facilitate a series of fisheries law seminars and conduct research on fisheries governance. Through his work at Harvard, Adam hopes to raise awareness on issues limiting access to justice for family and small-scale fishers.

The seminars will focus on fisheries governance, the right to protest in the high seas, fishers safety, transboundary conflicts, seafood safety, and the human rights approach to fisheries management and to spread information on Fisheries Law itself as an emerging academic discipline.

Adam is hosted by the East Asian Legal Studies Program at HLS under the direction of Professor William Alford.