VLS Blog

The Vermont Law School blog features blog posts and articles written by students (JD, LLM and Master's students), fa​culty members, and others,​ about ​​​​environmental law, energy law, food and agriculture law and policy, inter​national law, ​human rights, and more.​

Global Reach Carina Roselli, VLS Law BlogVeteran Law Student Forges His Own Path

November 10, 2017
Chris Whidden JD’18, Army veteran and president of the Veterans Law Student Association at VLS, discusses the needs of local veterans with South Royalton Legal Clinic Staff Attorney Laurie Izutsu.​ Read more »​​​​​​

Rockweed Management in Maine, VLS Water Law BlogTHE MUDDIED WATERS OF ROCKWEED MANAGEMENT IN MAINE​​

July 18, 2017
In Maine, the hotly debated issue of whether rockweed constitutes private property has significant ramifications​. Read more »

Sea Level Rise in California, VLS Water Law Blog'UNDEVELOPMENT': ADDRESSING SEA LEVEL RISE IN CALIFORNIA

June 26, 2017
T​he state of California continues to act as a pioneer when it comes to American climate change initiatives, in both the mitigation and adaptation sphere​s.​ Read more »

Trump Paris Agreement, VLS Environmental Law BlogNOT SO FAST, MR. TRUMP

June 5, 2017
President Trump's decision to leave the Paris climate agreement ​was, in the words of distinguished career diplomat R. Nicholas Burns, a "colossal foreign policy mistake."​​​​​​ Read more »

California Marine Protected Areas, VLS Water Law BlogAN OCEAN NETWORK PROTECTED, BUT NOT FROM HARM

May 23, 2017
Despite legal protection, species and habitats fou​​nd in California’s Marine Protected Areas ​remain exposed to harmful ocean, land and climate-based stressors.​​​​​​ Read more »

Trump War on Climate Change, VLS Environmental Law BlogTRUMP'S WAR ON SCIENCE

May 12, 2017
In his first budget, Trump proposed to eliminate many climate change programs outright, and cut others sharply. Read more »​​​​​​

Student Summer Ocean Work, VLS Water Law BlogSTUDENTS DIVE INTO SUMMER OCEAN WORK

May 8, 2017
This summer, spanning the waters of the continental U.S., our students will be tackling the major issues facing our ocean.​​​ Read more »​​​​​​

Community Owned Solar Power, VLS Energy Regulation and Law BlogWILL OUR COMMUNITY OWN OUR SOLAR POWER?

April 6, 2017
As community solar projects become increasingly popular around the country, there’s a question that any potential participants should be askin​​​g: will our community actually own our solar power?​​ Read more »​​​​​​

Different approach to Drug Use and Addiction, VLS Criminal Justice Blog​A DIFFERENT APPROACH TO DRUG USE AND ADDICTION

March 17, 2017
In front of the Vermont House Judiciary Committee, VLS professor Robert Sand offered his perspective on a fundamentally different approach to marijuana reform.​ Read more »​​​​​​

Vermont H.55 Bill, VLS Criminal Justice BlogVERMONT H.55 IS ‘IMPORTANT ADVANCEMENT IN JUSTICE’

February 17, 2017
Thoughts on the H.55, a bill that guarantees public defense services to all needy people who were 25 or under at the time of their​ alleged offense.​ Read more »​​​​​​

Global Reach Joseph Kaifala, VLS Law BlogGLOBAL REACH WITH JOSEPH KAIFALA JD'13

November 18​​​​​​, 2016
Born in Sierra Leone, VLS alum Joseph Kaifala ​​​now return​​​s to the country he used to call home to rebuild schools and libraries​.​​ Read more »​​​​​​

Global Reach Carina Roselli, VLS Law BlogGLOBAL REACH WITH CARINA ROSELLI JD'13

November 16​​​​​, 2016
A former U.S. Army helicopter pilot, VLS alum Carina Roselli sees a bigger fight environmental preservation.​ Read more »​​​​​​

Global Reach Leigh Henry, VLS Law BlogGLOBAL REACH WITH ​LEIGH HENRY MSEL'98

November 14​, 2016
International wildlife policy has a friend in VLS alum Leigh Henry, who supports the prosecution and sentencing of high-profile illegal traffickers.​ Read more »​​​​​​

Global Reach Olga Kariyawasam, VLS Law BlogGLOBAL REACH WITH OLGA KARIYAWASAM LLM'12

November 12, 2016
VLS alum Olga Kariyawasam's credentials​​ speak for themselves as her bilingual assets are in high demand in a globalized economy.​​​ Read more »​​​​​​

Global Reach Charles Di Leva, VLS Law BlogGLOBAL REACH WITH CHARLES DI LEVA JD'78

November 10, 2016
As Chief Counsel of Environmental and International Law for the World Bank, Chuck Di Leva has a global view of climate change.​​​ Read more »​​​​​​

Global Reach Shazia Khan, VLS Law BlogGLOBAL REACH WITH SHAZIA KHAN JD'03

November 8, 2016
VLS alum Shazia Khan is on a mission to provide a country with 55 million people without electricity the power they need.​​ Read more »​​​​​​

Global Reach Dan Williams, VLS Law BlogGLOBAL REACH WITH DAN WILLIAMS JD’10

November 6, 2016
As Environmental Protection Specialist for the Federal Aviation Administration, VLS alum Dan Williams has become a climate changer.​​ Read more »​​​​​​

GLOBAL REACH WITH GRETCHEN OLDHAM JD’09, MII/DJCE CERGY PONTOISE ’10

November 4, 2016
Find out how Gretchen Oldham is uniting nations through her work as a professional support lawyer with Cleary Gottlieb Paris LLP.​

CALL ME DANIEL: AN IMMIGRANT'S STORY

November 2, 2016
Vermont has been a safe haven for some 6,300 refugees who have settled here since 1989, including Daniel, who caught Erin Jacobsen JD'11's attention​.

THE CHINA PROJECT

September 30, 2016
On this increasingly small and fragile planet, China is the single biggest Environmental Stage. Enter Vermont Law School.

A VOICE FOR INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS

September 28​, 2016
I​n her work and in her teaching, Stephanie Farrior has shown that the fight for social justice knows no boundaries.​​

A PASSIONATE ADVOCATE: REMEMBERING CHERYL HANNA​

September 26​, 2016
Vermont Law School mourns the passing of Cheryl Hanna, who was a passionate leader in the Vermont community.

A CITIZEN OF THE WORLD: REMEMBERING JEFF SHIELDS​

September 24​, 2016
Vermont Law School mourns the passing of Geoffrey “Jeff” Benson Shields, who left an indelible mark on the law school as president and dean from 2004 to 2012.

FOR THE LOVE OF WATER: REMEMBERING ALAN PANEBAKER​

September 22​​​, 2016
​Alan Panebaker JD/MELP '11 represented the very best of VLS and his passion for the outdoors lives on in the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic.

CALL OF THE WILD WITH BEN LEONI JD'11

September 20​, 2016
​When VLS alum Ben Leoni JD'11 is not focusing on land-use and zoning disputes, he's hitting the slopes as a professional backcountry skier.​​

CALL OF THE WILD WITH VERONICA WARNOCK MSEL'99

September 18​, 2016
There's no mountain eco-system high enough that VLS Alum Warnock MSEL'99 won't fight protect as the Conservation Director for Hell's Canyon Preservation Council.​​

CALL OF THE WILD WITH REGGIE HALL JD/MSEL'02

September 16, 2016
VLS alum Reggie Hall JD/MSEL'02 helps make it possible for local conservation groups to purchase land by providing financial and technical assistance.​​

CALL OF THE WILD WITH ALLISON BUCKLEY MELP'10

September 14, 2016
VLS alum Allison Buckley's MELP'10 role as Natural Resources Planner has given her the chance to help conserve thousands of acres of land.​​

CALL OF THE WILD WITH MIKE O'BRIEN JD/MSEL'02

September 12, 2016
From the Green Mountains to Alaskan, VLS alum ​Mike O'Brien ​JD/MSEL'02 has served the environment, and worked hard to make it safe for all.​

CALL OF THE WILD WITH MEGHAN HOOKER MSEL'05

September 10, 2016
By becoming an advocate for removing old dams, supporting and restoring rivers and improving public access for boaters, VLS alum Megan Hooker MSEL'05 has made the great outdoors her office.​​

CALL OF THE WILD WITH STACY TATMAN JD'13​

September 8, 2016
When VLS Alum Stacy Tatman JD'13 is not photographing nature, she's managing regulatory and legislative issues on behalf of it.

CALL OF THE WILD WITH ELIZA DONOGHUE JD'12​

September 6, 2016
From Vermont to Maine, VLS alum Eliza Donoghue JD'12 has made it her life's passion to protect New England​ forests and land.​

CALL OF THE WILD WITH THERESA LABRIOLA MSEL'99​

September 4, 2016
When VLS alum Theresa Labriola MSEL '99 is not exploring the ocean and its wildlife, she's fighting to protect them.

CALL OF THE WILD WITH KATE BROWN JD/MSL'95​

September 2, 2016
From snowshoeing in Vermont to negotiating a land purchase Lehman Brothers, VLS Alum Kate Brown JD/MSL'16, has had a deep connection with nature.

CALL OF THE WILD WITH CYNDY KOZARA MSEL'99​

August 31, 2016
VLS Alum Cyndy Kozara MSEL'99 turned her law degree into a career preserving land and wildlife for the Green Mountain Horse Association (GMHA)​.​​

CALLING ALL POLICYMAKERS​ AND LEGISLATORS​

August 29, 2016
The impact that Climate Change has had on Vermont is undeniable, and VLS is preparing the next generation of policymakers and legislators to protect the environment.​

GREAT OUTDOORS WITH MOLLY GRAY JD'14​

August 27, 2016
Whether its politics and international affairs or trails and fishing holes Vermont is ingrained in VLS alum Molly Gray JD'14.​

GREAT OUTDOORS WITH PROFESSOR JACK TUHOLSKE

August 25, 2016
VLS Professor Jack Tuholske love of the outdoors has translated well to lessons in and out of the classroom, including a two summer course in Montana.​

GREAT OUTDOORS WITH TOM MITCHINER '15

August 23, 2016
Thanks to Vermont Law, VLS alum Tom Mitchiner '15 was able to give meaning to his passion for outdoor sports.

GREAT OUTDOORS WITH KELLY NOKES '15

August 21, 2016
VLS Alum Kelly Nokes '15 came to Vermont Law not only because of her passion for protecting the environment, but to satisfy her inner adrenaline junkie as well.

GREAT OUTDOORS WITH​​ REBECCA PURDOM JD/MSEL '96

August 19, 2016
From Oregon to South Royalton, Professor Rebe​cca Purdom has balanced her expertise in law with a love for the ​outdoors.​​​​​​

GREAT OUTDOORS WITH DAVID SCOTT '15​

August 17, 2016
An aspiring bass fishing pro, VLS Alum David Scott '15 came to South Royalton with the mission of protecting that waterways and what he loves.​​​​​

VERMONT FOOD NETWORK WITH MEGHAN JEANS JD'02/MSEL'03

August 15, 2016
​​VLS Alum Meghan Jeans, director of the Boston aquarium's Conservation Programs, is leading an effort​ to advance seafood sustainability.​​​​​

​VERMONT FOOD NETWORK WITH PAIGE TOMASELLI '04​

August 13, 2016
VLS Alum Paige Tomaselli's '04 work for the Center for Food Safety has helped protect animals, the environment and public health, all while fighting "factory farms."​​​​

​VERMONT FOOD NETWORK WITH NANCY AND WALTER WARNER '12

August 11, 2016
Nancy and Walter Warner '12 have been able to grow their unique jam business, thanks in large part to Walter's legal education and externships.​

VERMONT FOOD NETWORK WITH AMY HUYFFER '00

August 9, 2016
As a first-year law student Huyffer aspired to be a principled small-town lawyer, instead, her days now begin with 4 a.m. milking, arranging ​logistics for a dairy business, and caring for her children—four boys, ages six to thirteen.​

​VERMONT FOOD NETWORK WITH MICHAEL FORMICA '98​

August 7, 2016
While it’s become common in recent years to espouse the virtues of small, localized farming, Michael Formica isn’t one of the movement's evangelists. ​"I’m ‘Big Bacon,’” he says, with a laugh.​

GRACE BEFORE DINNER: THE FUTURE OF FOOD​

August 5, 2016
Scott Cullen '97 and GRACE Communications Foundation are cultivating relationships where philanthropy and public policy touch the overlapping spheres of food, water, and energy.​

 NOURISHMENT: CENTER FOR AGRICULTURE AND FOOD SYSTEMS' MISSION​

August 3, 2016
Vermont Law School's Center for Agriculture and food systems is on a mission to improve the way a nation grows and distributes its food. It's a place where students can get their hands dirty.​​​​

WATER WORKS WITH ALUM BECCA PINCUS MSEL'11​

August 1, 2016
VLS alum, Becca Pincus MSEL'11, Chair of Arctic Studies at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and Professor-In-Residence at the Center for Arctic Study and Policy, works to support the Coast Guard's strategic objectives in the Arctic region.​​

WATER WORKS WITH ALUM ANDY MEEKS JD/MSEL'03​

July 30, 2016
VLS alum, Andy Meeks JD/MSEL'03, Development Director at The Freshwater Trust in Portland, Oregon, calls himself a "disrupter of the status quo" in the fight for clean and abundant fresh water.​

WATER WORKS WITH ALUM MARGAUX VALENTI JD'13​

July 28, 2016
VLS alum, Margaux Valenti JD'13, Staff Attorney at Riverkeeper in Buffalo, New York, helps gain access, through contractual agreements, to private and public lands to install river restoration projects.

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM TOM LEARY JD/MSEL'95​

July 26, 2016
VLS alum, Tom Leary JD/MSEL'95, Deputy Legal Counsel to the Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman at the Department of Defense in Arlington, Virginia dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM MICHELLE BENDER MELP'15​

July 24, 2016
VLS alum, Michelle Bender MELP'15, Earth Policy Fellow at Earth Law Center in Redwood City, California, dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM PETER VAN TUYN JD/MSEL'89​

July 22, 2016
VLS alum, Peter Van Tuyn JD/MSEL'89, Managing Partner at Bessenyey & Van Tuyn, LLC in Anchorage, Alaska, dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.​

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM SARAH MOONEY REITER JD'13​

July 20, 2016
VLS alum, Sarah Mooney Reiter JD'13, Ocean Policy Analyst at Monterey Bay Aquarium in Monterey, Calif., dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.​

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM ZACHARY LEES JD/MELP'12

July 18, 2016
VLS alum, Zachary Lees JD/MELP'12, Staff Attorney at Clean Ocean Action in Sandy Hook, N.J., dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.​

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM STEPHANIE SHOWALTER OTTS JD/MSEL'01​​

July 16, 2016
VLS alum, Stephanie Showalter Otts JD/MSEL'01, ​Senior Research Counsel and Director of Sea Grant Programs at the University of Mississippi School of Law in Oxford, Miss., dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM MEGHAN JEANS ​JD/MSEL'02​

July 14, 2016
​VLS alum, Meghan Jeans JD/MSEL'02, Director of Conservation at the New England Aquarium in Boston, Mass., dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.​

OCEAN VIEW WITH ALUM JIM LANDIS LLM'09

July 12, 2016
VLS alum, Jim Landis LLM'09, Counsel at Lowcountry Counsel Office U.S. Marine Corps in Beaufort, S.C., dives into the legal and policy issues related to protecting oceans and marine ecosystems.

A LAWYER ON THIN ICE

July 10, 2016
Betsy Baker, Professor of Law at VLS, is now a go-to expert on the​ Arctic. Through her work with the U.S. State Department and the Arctic Council, an international governing body for the Arctic, Baker has played an important role in elevating the status and understanding of the frozen north.

CLEAN WATER ACT, WILLIAM TAYLOR JD/MSEL'83

July 8, 2016
Alum William Taylor JD/MSEL'83, ​Attorney at Pierce Atwood LLP in Portland, Maine and Partner, Environmental Practice Group, shares his Clean Water Act (CWA)-related work along with CWA trends and big issues.​

​CLEAN WATER ACT, ANNE HEDGES MSEL'93​

July 6, 2016
Alum Anne Hedges MSEL'93, ​Deputy Director and Lead Lobbyist, Montana Environmental Information Center, a statewide nonprofit focused on air and water pollution issues, shares her Clean Water Act (CWA)-related work along with CWA trends and big issues.​

​CLEAN WATER ACT, MICHAEL FORMICA JD'98​

July 4, 2016
Alum Michael Woodard JD'98, Assistant VP and Legal Counsel for Domestic Policy, National Pork Producers Council, shares his Clean Water Act (CWA)-related work along with CWA trends and big issues.

CLEAN WATER ACT, LEE WOODARD JD'82

July 2, 2016
Alum Lee Woodard JD'82, Partner with Harris Beach PLLC, shares his Clean Water Act (CWA)-related work along with CWA trends and big issues.​

CLEAN WATER ACT, JULIA ANASTASIO MSEL'96​

June 30, 2016
Alum Julia Anastasio MSEL'96, Executive Director and General Counsel, Association of Clean Water Administrators in Washington, D.C., shares her Clean Water Act (CWA)-related work along with​ CWA trends and big issues.

WATER WARS​

June 28, 2016
Few ​​question the need for clean waterways and safe drinking water. But the controversy and litigation involved in attaining those goals is increasing and sometimes makes the ultimate objectives harder to reach.

 

THIRST AND RESILIENCE FROM EAST TO WEST

June 26, 2016
In the face of drought, floods, and sometimes invisible pollution, access to clean water is growing more fraught than ever. The work of VLS alumni in three regions of the country offers a glimpse of how it's all playing out.

​SUPPORTING ASYLUM SEEKERS

 

June 24, 2016
Over spring break a group of VLS students volunteered with the CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project in Texas to provide legal assistance to asylum​-seeking mothers and children being held at detention centers by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. 

 

Global Reach Carina Roselli, VLS Law BlogCODE OF CONDUCT

May 1, 2015
Things in Bob Liu's JD'14 life began to shift partway through his 1L year, when he overheard friends discussing the Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps.. Read more »​​​​​​