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Environmental, Natural Resources, & Energy Law

GreenLight on Victor Reuther, editor of Environmental Law journal

October 06, 2014

  • Victor Reuther (middle) with new friends at Bhagsu Falls, India

We’re starting a new series of stories called “GreenLights”, where we will shine a spotlight on some of our amazing students in the environmental and natural resources law program. In our first GreenLight, Victor Reuther (’15) shares some of his background and law school experiences with us. In addition to his role as Editor of Environmental Law, Victor spent a fabulous summer on a Lewis & Clark externship in Delhi, India. 

 I was born in the post-industrial city of Detroit, Michigan. At age four my family relocated forty-five minutes due north to the small suburban town of Lake Orion, where I spent the formative years of my life. After spending my senior year of high school at The Putney School, a liberal arts boarding school in Vermont, I traversed the nation to northern California to attend Humboldt State University. Upon withdrawing from the music program, I settled on studying political science, focusing closely on the ways capitalism, environment, politics, and social movements interact to shape our contemporary global landscape.

 I was raised to value and respect our natural environment. From a young age teachers underscored the significance of the interconnectedness between humanity and nature. I was taught to consider the environmental and social costs of our modern consumer-based economic paradigm. It quickly became undeniable that humanity’s continued welfare is inextricably tethered to and contingent upon the health and productivity of nature. As global population continued to rise, and levels of abject poverty declined, I turned to environmental law as a vehicle for helping shape the way humanity thinks about and uses the earth’s natural resources. While small-scale actions and behavior changes are necessary and important if we are to properly manage our natural resources, I wanted to advance broader change, and environmental law provides this opportunity.

 Serving as editor in chief of Environmental Law is unquestionably the highlight of my academic career thus far. I have the honor and privilege of working alongside some of the brightest, most thoughtful, and inspiring people I have ever known. More than anything, my experience as editor in chief is a function of these people. This is to say, so far it’s been a great ride.

 As editor in chief I’m ultimately responsible—from cradle to grave—for ensuring four issues of environmental and natural resources scholarship go to press. Our members put an extraordinary amount of attention and care into publishing every single manuscript. Our first-year members undertake the exhaustive challenge of verifying each authors’ assertion in every article is supported by another resource. Our Form & Style Editors methodically peruse each manuscript—on more than one occasion—to ensure every footnote is formatted pursuant to our various style guides. Our Articles Editors read through a flood of manuscript submissions to identify only the most forward-looking and analytically sophisticated articles to publish. Together we are working as a well-oiled machine.

 One of the other highlights of my law school experience so far was the eight week summer externship with a Mergers & Acquisitions team at India’s largest law firm—Amarchand Mangaldas. My responsibilities ran the gamut—from proof reading various international business contracts, to researching securities regulations promulgated by the Securities Exchange Board of India, to preparing a multi-country comparative analysis of liquidated damages. In addition to engaging legal work, I had the privilege of spending time with a multitude of wonderful, intelligent and charming people from across India and around the world. This included shadowing members of a litigation team to a proceeding before the Supreme Court of India, as well as attending a business dispute settlement over which the former Supreme Court’s Chief Justice arbitrated. As a law student with an interest in environmental law, I thoroughly enjoyed gaining exposure to a wide range of unfamiliar areas of law in the world’s largest democracy.

For more on Victor’s externship experience, please click here.