Distinguished Visitors

The annual distinguished visitors event celebrates achievements and perspectives of environmental scholars from around the country, aiming to increase exposure of environmental issues and educate students on different perspectives.

This Year’s Distinguished Visitor:

Uma Outka

The University of Kansas School of Law

Professor Uma Outka works at the intersection of energy law and environmental law. Her scholarship explores the legal context for energy transition, with particular interests in energy and environmental justice, renewable energy, electricity regulation and decarbonization of the electric grid. More information on Prof. Outka and the 2024 Distinguished Visitor and Graduates event coming soon. 

History of NRLI and the Distinguished Visitor’s Lecture:

The Natural Resources Law Institute (NRLI) provided a focus for legal scholarship at Lewis & Clark’s law school. The NRLI supported work by an annual research fellow, distinguished faculty visitor, and visiting scholars from around the globe, as well as faculty research. The institute has coordinated more than 20 educational programs dealing with natural resources law, several of which have been conducted nationwide. NRLI also conducts intensive, specialized environmental law trainings for federal judges, government agencies, and judges and lawyers in other countries.

NRLI cosponsored, with various student groups, a series of Environmental Colloquia at the law school, attracting local, regional, and national speakers on a range of topics. These colloquia were free and open to the public.

NRLI provided nearly all of the law clerks under contract to the Bonneville Power Administration’s Office of General Counsel. Students placed at BPA work on issues of fish and wildlife restoration, regional power management, environmental impacts, endangered species, and rate setting.

The Environmental, Natural Resources, and Energy Law program continues to provide these programs and events after the dissolution of NRLI. Our Newsletter provides updates on our program.

Prior Distinguished Visitors include:


Helen Kang

Golden Gate University School of Law

“Bearing Witness to Environmental Injustice: The Path Forward”

Here is a link to the recording of Prof. Kang’s lecture.






2021 (lecture held virtually in 2022)

Professor Mary Wood

Philip H. Knight Professor from the University of Oregon

“Nature’s Trust: Protecting An Ecological Endowment for Posterity”

Here is a link to the recording of Prof. Wood’s lecture.


Professor Alexandra Klass

University of Minnesota Law School

“U.S. Energy Transitions in the Trump Administration: A Law and Policy Perspective”


Professor Sarah Krakoff

University of Colorado

“The Roots of Environmental Injustice and the Limits of Environmental Law”


Professor Dan Tarlock

Chicago-Kent College of Law

“Western Water Law and the Challenge of Climate Disruption”


Professor Dan Esty

Yale University

“From 20 th  Century Environmental Protection to 21 st  Century Sustainability: Evolving Law and Policy”


Professor Rena Steinzor

University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law

“How White Collar Criminal Enforcement Can Save the Environment”


Professor Richard L. Revesz New York University School of Law

“Three Stages in the Evolution of Environmental Policy”


Professor Jim Salzman Duke University

“Turning the World Upside Down: How Frames of Reference Shape Environmental Law”


Professor Hope Babcock Georgetown Law

“Putting a Price on Whales to Save Them”


Professor Jody Freeman Harvard Law

“The President’s Role in Environmental Law”


Professor Douglas A. Kysar

Yale Law School

“What Climate Change Can Do About Tort Law”


Professor J.B. Ruhl

Florida State University College of Law

“After Cap-and-Trade: The Climate-Forced Path of Environmental Law”


Professor Christopher Schroeder

Duke University School of Law

“Moving the 21st Century Environmental Agenda: Lessons from the Environmental Decade of the 1970s”


Professor Lisa Heinzerling

Georgetown University Law Center

“Climate Change in the Supreme Court”


Professor Robert Glennon

University of Arizona Rogers College of Law

“The Environmental Consequences of Groundwater Pumping: Herein Tales of Bottled Water and French Fries”


Professor Eric Freyfogle

University of Illinois School of Law

“Goodbye to the Public/Private Divide”


Professor Nicholas Robinson

Pace University School of Law

“Conceiving Laws for the Biosphere”


Dean David H. Getches

University of Colorado School of Law

“Water Wrongs: Why Can’t We Do It Right the First Time?”


Professor Robert Percival

University of Maryland School of Law

“Greening the Constitution”


Professor Zygmunt Plater

Boston College School of Law

“Law and the Fourth Estate: Endangered Nature, the Press, and the Dicey Game of Democratic Governance”


John Leshy, Solicitor

U.S. Department of Interior (1993-2001)

“The Babbit Legacy at the Department of Interior: A Preliminary View”


Professor Barton Thompson, Jr.

Stanford University Law School

“Tragically Difficult: The Problems of Regulating the Commons”


Professor Suedeen G. Kelly

University of New Mexico School of Law

“The New Electric Power Houses in America: Will They Transform Your Life?”


Professor Oliver Houck

Tulane University School of Law

“Are Humans Part of Ecosystems?”


Professor Richard Lazarus

Georgetown University Law Center

“Fairness in Environmental Law”


Professor Gerald Torres

University of Texas

School of Law

“Taking & Giving: Police Power, Public Value, and Private Right”


Professor Robert Fowler

Director, Australian Centre for Environmental Law

“Applying Environmental Disclosure Requirements Extraterritorially to Transnational Corporations”


Professor Carol Rose

Yale Law School

“Environmental Lessons”


Professor Harrison Dunning

University of California at Davis School of Law

“Current Issues”


Professor William Rodgers

University of Washington Law School

“Working with Scientists, Public Lands Acquisition, Other Recent Lessons from Washington, D.C.”


Professor Daniel Farber

University of Minnesota School of Law

“Reserve Mining and Judicial Review”


Professor James Krier

University of Michigan Law School

“The Critical Roles of Politics and Economics in Resolving Environmental Issues”


Professor Frederick Anderson

American University Washington College of Law

“Environmental Aspects of Recombinant DNA Research and Products”

Please email elaw@lclark.edu for questions regarding the distinguished visitor or graduate event.