Saturday, September 16, 2017

Jason Foscolo joins LL.M. Speaker Series "Careers in Agricultural & Food Law"

Jason Foscolo joins LL.M. Speaker Series "Careers in Agricultural & Food Law

Join us on Wednesday, September 20th at 11:00 a.m. CST as Alumnus Jason Foscolo discusses his work as the founder and principle attorney at The Food Law Firm.

The Food Law Firm is a New York-based law firm serving farming and food entrepreneurs across the nation.

As Jason explains on his website -
I launched this firm in 2011 with the single goal of delivering general practice, commercial law services to food businesses. 
It is easy for me to point out to my clients the special regulations that apply to their food businesses. I go one step further than that. Over the years I’ve been in practice, I’ve developed an acute awareness for how the constellation of food laws and regulations can affect the ordinary commercial transactions that fill the business day. I add value for my clients by mitigating risks, both regulatory and commercial, and this is what makes me distinctive.
I admire my clients. From farmers to manufacturers, they are sharp and courageous. From shippers to importers, they are innovative and disruptive. It is a privilege to help them make their businesses better. 
I am a former Judge Advocate in the United States Marine Corps (separated in 2010 at the rank of Captain) and I’m currently serving as a Major in the New York Air National Guard. I’ve got three kiddos and an indefatigable wife, and you can usually find us eating things across our home range, the Hudson Valley of New York.
Food Law Firm clients include specialty pork producer Mosefund Mangalitsa, the gastro-job resource Good Food Jobs, trade associations like the American Mangalitsa Breeders Association and the American Cheese Society, and the highly-respected non-profit foundation, The Farmer-Veteran Coalition.

Jason writes the Food Law Blog with many followers and tweets at @FoodLawAttorney. He is an outspoken supporter of our Program and often mentions us favorably in the press, as evidenced in an excerpt from an interview with Gastronomes.
I had the extraordinary opportunity to pursue an advanced degree in Agriculture and Food Law at the University of Arkansas School of Law . . . the  program gave me a comprehensive understanding of the network of special laws that regulate almost every transaction in our food system.
Jason will join us by video-conference from his offices in New York. Join us in room 254 or catch the live stream by contacting us at

Friday, September 15, 2017

Paying it Forward - LL.M. Alumni Give Back


We are 63% towards our goal with 14 days left!

Thanks again for your support of the LL.M. Alumni-Sponsored Graduate Assistantship!

Want to see how you’re making a difference? Check out this video testimonial from LL.M. alumna
KC Tucker as she discusses how her time in the program changed the trajectory of her professional life. Assistantships provide critical financial support while enhancing a candidate’s professional portfolio and advancing the good work being done in Agricultural & Food Law today.

We’re making great progress, but aren’t there yet. Please help spread the word about this important project to your colleagues and classmates. Send a quick email. Share this video on social media. Be sure to provide our project link ( and share how the LL.M. program has made a difference in your life, too! Remember, gifts of all sizes join together to help us reach our goal, and contributions can made anonymously.


Thursday, September 14, 2017

Take Me Out To The Ball Game

How Our National Pastime United Students and Alums

For five years, Jose Ernesto Colon Villafañe, dreamed of attending the LL.M. program. This year, his dream became a reality. Through persistence and a series of fortunate events, including receipt of the Benjamin Franklin Lever Fellowship, he traveled to Fayetteville from San Juan, Puerto Rico—notebook in hand, and ready to learn.

Jose Ernesto enjoys being part of the LL.M. program and also enjoys his internship with The Law Group of Northwest Arkansas, LLP. The Law Group includes three LLM program alums: K.C. Dupps Tucker, Katie Willoughby and Kristy Boehler. Experiencing the practical application of agricultural law is one perk of working with the firm. Another is baseball tickets.

Courtesy of The Law Group, Jose Ernesto treated LL.M. colleagues Andrei Trapizonian and Susan Burns to a Northwest Naturals game at the Arvest Stadium.  Attending a baseball game was a first for Andrei, a native of Kyiv, Ukraine. For Susan, from Minneapolis (home of the Minnesota Twins), it was an opportunity to explain the rules of the game—a rare opportunity given that her understanding doesn’t extend much past the basics.

They all enjoyed the great view close to home plate, and they decided that a commonality between agriculture and baseball is the pace of crop growth and the pace of the game. The Naturals lost, but it was a welcomed opportunity to enjoy a beautiful evening far away from studies …

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Introducing Susan Burns, Graduate Assistant to the LL.M. Program

Susan Burns appointed LL.M. Program Graduate Assistant

Susan Burns, LL.M. Graduate Assistant

We are pleased to announce that on-campus LL.M. Candidate Susan Burns will be serving as the 2017-2018 LL.M. Program Graduate Assistant.  Susan hails from Minneapolis, Minnesota and is the founder and President of Susan Burns LLC. Her work focuses on representing small businesses from start-up through global development. She is also the founder and CEO of Small Business Legal School Ltd.  She is a leader within the ABA International Law Section, co-chairing the Mexico Committee. Her food and agricultural interests include providing support to organic agriculture.

Susan received her J.D. from Hamline School of Law where she served as Associate Editor of the Hamline Law Review. She received her B.A., from the College of St. Benedict in Minnesota, majoring in German.

In her role as Graduate Assistant, Susan will be working directly with Program Director Susan Schneider on marketing, alumni relations, and recruiting as well as providing advanced legal analysis on agricultural and food law topics.  She will be blogging here, keeping everyone up to date on Program and alumni activities. Watch for her first post tomorrow.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Professor Ewelukwa Publishes Chapter in New International Food Law Book

Professor Uche Ewelukwa Ofodile's chapter, Food Law and Policy in Africa: Emerging Legal Framework, Key Issues, Major Gaps and Challenges was published in a text book, International Food Law and Policy, eds. Gabriela Steier, Gabriela, Kiran Patel, Kiran.

This unique textbook considers food law & policy issues throughout the world, providing an interdisciplinary focus and bringing together experts from many countries.

We are fortunate to have Professor Ewelukwa, an internationally recognized professor and scholar, teaching in our LL.M. Program. She teaches two courses in the LL.M. Program in Agricultural & Food Law that she created, Right to Food and Business, Human Rights & Corporate Social Responsibility.

Professor Ewelukwa is an active member of the American Bar Association Section on International Law (ABA-SIL) and currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Committee on Investment & Development, the Vice-Chair of the International Intellectual Property Rights Committee, as well as the Vice-Chair of the Committee on Corporate Social Responsibility of the association.

Professor Ewelukwa is also an active member of the American Society of International Law (ASIL) and currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Intellectual Property Interest Group and the Co-Chair of the Africa Interest Group of ASIL. Professor Ewelukwa is the Secretary General of the African Society of International Law.

Professor Ewelukwa's scholarship focuses particularly on international investment law and arbitration, business and human rights, China-Africa trade and investment relations, as well as the intersection of intellectual property law and human rights. Professor Ewelukwa’s articles have appeared or are forthcoming in the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, Michigan Journal of International Law, Minnesota Journal of International Law, Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law, University of Miami Law Review, Transnational Dispute Management, among others.

Professor Ewelukwa is on the Advisory Board of the African Journal of Legal Studies, is on the Editorial Board of Law Digest, Africa’s Premier Law Journal, and is part of the Editorial Team of the Africa International Legal Awareness Blog. For four years (2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014) she has served as the Editor of The Year In Review for the International Investment & Development Committee of the American Bar Association Section of International Law. She has also served as the Editor of The Year In Review for the Committee on Corporate Social Responsibility of the American Bar Association Section of International Law.

Professor Ewelukwa has received numerous awards and fellowships in recognition of her work. Past awards include: Outstanding 2014 Year-in-Review (YIR) Award from the American Bar Association Section of International Law (for the Corporate Social Responsibility Committee’s Year in Review that she edited and co-authored), the 2009 Human Rights Essay Award from the Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, and a fellowship award from the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs.

Professor Ewelukwa holds the following academic degrees:   LL.B. (Nigeria); LL.M. (London); LL.M. (Harvard); S.J.D. (Harvard).

Kelly Damewood to join Careers in Agricultural & Food Law Speaker Series

Kelly Damewood, Director of Policy & Government Affairs, California Certified Organic Farmers
On Wednesday, September 13th, LL.M. alumna Kelly Damewood will join our LL.M. Speaker Series "Careers in Agricultural & Food Law" to discuss her path from LL.M. Candidate to Director of Policy & Government Affairs at California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF).

Kelly attended the LL.M. Program in Agricultural & Food Law during the 2013-14 academic year. During her Candidacy she served as the 2013-14 Marler Clark Graduate Assistant, writing and publishing news articles on food safety issues for the online publication Food Safety News with worldwide distribution.

Kelly received her J.D. from Vermont Law School, magna cum laude. During law school she served as a Staff Editor to the Vermont Law Review.  She earned her General Practice Program Certificate which is awarded after completing a program of classes that teach substantive law through simulations and mock transactions.

Kelly earned her B.A. from the University of Portland (English, Philosophy minor). Before attending law school she founded and operated a certified organic farm in Oregon. She is licensed to practice law in Oregon.

Following the LL.M. Program, Kelly joined CCOF as its Policy Director.  In this role, she leads CCOF’s policy staff and organizes member engagement on issues related to the National Organic Program (NOP), National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), the Farm Bill, and other aspects of agricultural policy. During her presentation, Kelly will talk about organic regulation and challenges to maintaining integrity within the organic system, as well as discussing her work at CCOF.

Email us at for streaming options and check back for news on future speakers. Our speaker series takes place weekly on Wednesday's from 11-11:50 am CST.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Disasters, Resilience, and the Importance of the Law

Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of our friends and alumni who have experienced, and who are now experiencing, the tremendous challenges of the hurricanes and the fires. The Texas cattle ranchers dealing with flooded pastures and lost livestock and the thousands of acres of ranch land and forests burning in the west are examples of the devastation. While the American spirit is resilient, no industry is more vulnerable to natural disaster than agriculture. And, agriculture is the core of our food system.

In the face of these challenges, I am heartened that we have dedicated agricultural and food law alumni throughout the U.S. and the world that are helping to keep our food system stable and strong, sometimes one client at a time. For example, our alumnus, Ben Thomas is Director of Agriculture in Montana. I know that he will do everything humanly possible to assist farmers dealing with fire damage in his state. Alumna Anne Hazlett was recently appointed Assistant to the Secretary of Agriculture for Rural Development. Anne will advocate fiercely for rural America, particularly when challenges are presented. Our alumni in private practice will represent their clients with disaster assistance, insurance claims, debt restructuring, supply chain disruption, food safety concerns and a host of other legal issues that arise from natural disasters. 

These are challenging times, and we are all moved by the tremendous needs that so many experience. Donate to the relief funds, volunteer if you are able, and be grateful for your good fortune if you are not affected. But, in the end, also remember that the work we do in agricultural and food law is the framework that underlies our entire food system. Please donate even a small sum to our campaign and give us a signal that you agree - the work we do is really important.

A very sincere "thank you" to those of you that have donated.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Campaign Update: $3525 needed to reach our goal!

LL.M. Alumni-Sponsored Graduate Assistant Campaign

We're getting there! Thanks to the generosity of our alumni, we have already raised nearly $2,500 toward our goal of $6,000! How does your support make a difference? Check out this video featuring 2017 LL.M. candidate Kelly Nuckolls as she describes her experience serving as a graduate assistant. Kelly's assistantship under the supervision of Dean Stacy Leeds focused on building a toolkit for native American farmers and ranchers, as well as the attorneys who assist them. This is just one example of projects undertaken by our GA's. Help us continue this important work by sharing on social media and encouraging your friends, family and fellow graduates to make a gift to the LL.M. Alumni-Sponsored Graduate Assistantship Campaign!

In addition to supporting our project financially, please help us even further by sharing our project with your family and friends via email, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Please share this project link:

Like and follow on Facebook and Twitter for announcements and updates!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Chancellor Issues Statement in Support of DACA Students

Chancellor Joseph E. Steinmetz of the University of Arkansas released the following statement Friday, Sept. 1, regarding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which was created in 2012 to support college-going students:

"In light of current conversations, the University of Arkansas believes strongly that the state of Arkansas and the greater national and global societies are strengthened by educated men and women. This is consistent with something I supported publicly when in December I signed on with more than 600 college and university presidents who favor supporting DACA students. That includes students who were brought to this country as children — through no fault of their own — and who have grown up in our state, attended our public schools and befriended our children, and have made contributions to our campuses, our economy and to our communities. Their attendance doesn't take anything away from any other student — in fact, their presence enriches our community. We urge the continuation of federal and state laws and policies that support their ability to pursue higher education."

— UA Chancellor Joseph E. Steinmetz

We need your help! Join our LL.M. Alumni-Sponsored GA Campaign

LL.M. Alumni-Sponsored GA Campaign off to a great start!

Our Alumni-Sponsored GA Campaign has officially begun, and we're off to a big start thanks to donations from a number of Alumni & Friends of the LL.M. Program. We thank you for your generous support!

We still have a long way to go over the next 28 days. We are 30% toward our goal of $6,000, and we need your help! Please consider a gift to support the next generation of LL.M. Candidates.
Wondering how your dollars can help? Check out some of the bio's from this year's candidates serving as Graduate Assistants. Your dollars will help us bring standout Candidates, like those featured below, to Fayetteville.

If you've already donated, consider challenging others from your class to do the same.

In addition to supporting our project financially, please help us even further by sharing our project with your family and friends via email, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Please share this project link:

Like and follow on Facebook and Twitter for announcements and updates!

This year, we are able to offer 5 Graduate Assistantships to outstanding candidates who applied to join us in Fayetteville. Each Candidate will contribute their time and skills to a project designed to enhance the important work being done in agricultural & food law. Help us continue the tradition by contributing to the Alumni Sponsored Graduate Assistantship Campaign today!

Andrii Trapizonian (Kyiv, Ukraine)
Masters in International Economic Law, Kyiv National Economic University
LL.B., with honors, Economics & Law Institute, Cherkasy National University
Sub-Lieutenant, Department of Military Training

Daria Kotova (Moscow, Russian Federation)
Recipient of the Russia-US Legal Education Foundation (RUSLEF) Fellowship
LL.B., National Research University Higher School of Economics, Faculty of Law
Member of Jessup Moot Court team, winning 1st place at the national rounds, top-20 in international rounds

Erika Dunyak (Cleveland, OH)
J.D., Case Western Reserve University
B.A., German and International Studies, with concentration in Global Environmental Sustainability, University of Dayton
Legal Extern with Sustainable Economies Law Center; Legal Intern and Research Assistant, Harvard Food Law & Policy Clinic; Sustainability Fellow with Office of Sustainability, Case Western Reserve University

Jamie Dickinson (Portland, OR)
Packaging & Labeling Specialist, Recreational Marijuana Program, Oregon Liquor Control Commission
J.D., University of Oregon School of Law
Staff Editor, Legallity Online Journal
Member, Law of Intellectual Property
B.S., Nutritional Sciences, University of Texas

Mary Susan Burns (Minneapolis, MN)
Attorney, Founder and President, Susan Burns LLC, Minneapolis, MN
Extensive experience in business law and business planning
J.D., Hamline School of Law
Hamline Law Review, Associate Editor
B.A. German, College of St. Benedict