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AOI: Environmental Law

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Beauty image Michigan's Coastline Beauty image Michigan's Coastline

@UMICHLAW Spring/Summer 2023

Forty Years of Protecting the Great Lakes Watershed and Training Environmental Lawyers

Forty years after its introduction, what is now known as the Environmental Law and Sustainability Clinic continues to provide invaluable hands-on learning experience for students, using litigation and other means of advocacy to advance environmental priorities in the Great Lakes region and beyond.

Russell Smith Russell Smith

Class Note Fall 2015

Russell Smith, ’86: Ensuring There Are Plenty of Fish in the Sea

Russell Smith’s clients are slimy. Really. They number in the billions, don’t communicate, and move constantly. He willingly allows many to get the death penalty. Smith, ’86, is deputy assistant secretary for international fisheries at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). 

Professor Joseph Sax Professor Joseph Sax

In Memoriam Spring 2014

Professor Joseph Sax

Joseph Sax, a pioneer of environmental law, died March 9, 2014, at the age of 78. He was a professor of law at Michigan from 1966 to 1986. Although he later joined the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley, he said of Michigan, “It is the place where I grew and prospered professionally, and it shall always be my intellectual home.” 

Jesse Medlong, ’13 Jesse Medlong, ’13

Class Note

Jesse Medlong, ’13: Addressing Climate Change across Borders and Sectors

It was only as he sat in Paris at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference of Parties that Jesse Medlong realized he might be an environmental lawyer. 

Ted Kill photo Ted Kill photo

In Practice Winter 2022

Law at the Bottom of the Earth

Ted Kill, ’07, covered a lot of ground between Michigan Law and his arrival in Antarctica, when he travelled to the continent as part of an interagency federal government inspection team. His journey to the bottom of the earth started with a clerkship at the International Court of Justice that he secured through Michigan Law, which served as a bridge to joining the State Department’s Office of the Legal Adviser. 

Professor Uhlmann addressing a lecture theater Professor Uhlmann addressing a lecture theater

@UMICHLAW Winter 2022

Environmental Law and Policy Program Hosts National Climate Advisor

“One out of three Americans [have felt the effects of climate change] in the last couple of months, between the wildfires and hurricanes and flooding, and the storms and droughts and heatwaves. We’re in a new era when we can see it and taste it and feel it for ourselves.” 

Graphic for "A Seat at the table" There is a fork, gavel, and plate Graphic for "A Seat at the table" There is a fork, gavel, and plate

Cover Story Winter 2020

A Seat at the Table: Legal Careers in the Food Industry

From Texas Roadhouse to Massachusetts dairy, we profile alumni working across the food industry's varied legal landscape. This includes a food lawyer who, “has participated in the development of virtually every law and regulation affecting the food industry in the last four decades,” an environmental lawyer advocating for sustainable meat production, a food writer, and a fast-food franchise owner.

Beauty image of the Law School Reading Room Beauty image of the Law School Reading Room

@UMICHLAW Fall 2020

@UMICHLAW: Fall 2020

John Petoskey, ’20, appointed to Michigan Advisory Council on Environmental Justice  |  Professor Ellen Katz receives 2020 L. Hart Wright Award for Excellence in Teaching  |  Professor of Law Evan Caminker co-counsels successful appellate case  |  and more...

Spring/Summer 2018 Feature Recovery Spring/Summer 2018 Feature Recovery

Cover Story Spring/Summer 2018

The Legal Climate of Climate Change: Preparedness and Recovery

As Hurricane Sandy bore down on the East Coast of the United States in 2012, Damon Vocke, ’89, stepped into his Connecticut yard with his two dogs, Winston and Diva. For Winston, it was business as usual—he seemed oblivious to the approaching storm. But Diva knew something was wrong. She was scared and wanted back into the house, where she then went to hide.

The Legal Climate of Climate Change Cover Art The Legal Climate of Climate Change Cover Art

Cover Story

The Legal Climate of Climate Change

Like most headline-grabbing problems, the myriad issues surrounding climate change are integral to the work of many Michigan Law graduates. For some alumni, curbing and combating climate change is their life’s calling. For others, it is another hurdle to navigate as they pursue optimal outcomes for their clients or businesses.