Having recently returned to my role as Stegner Center Director after a yearlong sabbatical, I’m pleased to report that the Center did not miss a beat during my absence as reflected in this newsletter. The Stegner Center hosted a diverse array of programs during the past year that showcased a number of accomplished individuals, who addressed today’s critical environmental problems. The Environmental Dispute Resolution program, following Michele Straube’s retirement, was pleased to add Theresa Jordan, who brings thirty years of experience working in the alternative dispute resolution field, to the Stegner Center team, while Danya Rumore has taken over as program director. In the Research Fellows program, John Ruple has continued to engage on public land issues critical to our region’s future. My faculty colleagues were as productive as ever, while our students continued to perform at the highest levels. All of these impressive accomplishments and activities are detailed in the articles that follow, once again demonstrating the vital role that the Stegner Center is playing in the College of Law and the broader community.
Building upon last year’s solid foundation, we are looking forward to another year of cutting-edge programs and accomplishments. The Stegner Center’s 23rd annual symposium will explore “Public Lands in a Changing West,” a particularly timely topic given the controversies over federal land ownership in the region and recent national monument designations. Our 13th annual Young Scholar, Professor Felix Mormann from Texas A&M Law School, will address the timely topic of alternative energy in his lecture. Our greenbag series will feature a variety of speakers on such topics as the end of fossil fuels, transportation challenges on the Wasatch Front, and environmental conditions at the Bonneville Salt Flats. In addition, the Center will host local author Chip Ward, who will read from his new book Stony Mesa, and our own Robin Craig who will discuss her new book, The End of Sustainability: Learning to Live with the Trickster in Natural Resources Management. We will once again send student teams to compete in the Pace and West Virginia moot court competitions, an opportunity that the students consistently report represents a highlight in their legal educations.
Further, the College of Law and the Stegner Center are gratified to have received important recognition that validates our deep commitment to environmental law and sustainability. For the third year in a row, U.S. News and World Report ranked the Stegner Center’s environmental law program in the top ten nationally, while National Jurist ranked the College second in the nation for sustainability. The Stegner Center is committed to maintaining this level of excellence throughout our programming, academic instruction, research, and outreach activities and to continuing to have an impact on the fields of environmental, natural resources, and energy law.
Of course, these accomplishments and programs would not be possible without your support and generosity. For that, we are grateful.
Director, Wallace Stegner Center