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Hunting for Answers about Sustainable Use Conservation

Hastings West-Northwest Journal of Environmental Law and Policy

Friday, October 30, 2015 from 7:30 AM to 8:00 PM (PDT)

Hunting for Answers about Sustainable Use Conservation

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Type Remaining End Quantity
General Admission 188 Tickets Ended Free  

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Event Details

Event overview:

In our society, views about uses of wildlife vary on a continuum that range from a wide variety of consumptive uses to a complete rejection of consumptive uses, with many positions in between. Consumptive use occurs when “the entire organism or any of its parts is deliberately killed or removed either as a goal in and of itself … or for a product.”[1] A person who completely rejects this position agrees with non-consumptive use. Non-consumptive use “does not involve direct removal and the wildlife is instead viewed and photographed.”[2] Again, most people fall somewhere in-between.

Legislatures, agencies, non-profit organizations, hunters, and corporations have long fought intense political and legal battles over the ability to hunt big game and, when the hunting occurs overseas, the ability to import any animal parts. The recent death of Cecil the Lion has intensified this debate. Speakers from all sides of the issue will discuss the laws, policies, and economic impacts surrounding sustainable use conservation. Sustainable use conservation is the idea that governmental agencies can sustainably manage wildlife in a way that advances the conservation of the species as a whole through consumptive use.

[1] H. Freese, Wild Species as Commodities: Managing Markets and Ecosystems for Sustainability (1998), at 7.

[2] L.M. Campbell, Use Them or Lose Them? The Sustainable Use of Marine Turtle Eggs at Ostional, Costa Rica, 24 Environmental Conservation 305, 306 (1998).

***Please keep in mind that this is a scholarly event held inside a law school while class is in session.  We will objectively consider all sides of the legal arguments as they relate to hunting issues that are currently controversial in politics and society. The audience shall treat all speakers with the utmost respect and any inappropriate comments or outbursts will not be tolerated.***


Mission statement:

This conference will discuss the laws, policies, economics, and environmental impact of hunting exotic and endangered/vulnerable species both nationally and internationally.


Panel #1 from 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.  

Theme: Current laws on hunting endangered/vulnerable species.

  • Bruce Wagman, Schiff Hardin, LLP, San Francisco, CA
  • Prof. Daniel Barnhizer, Michigan State University, College of the Law
  • Jen “the Archer” Cordaro, Finalist on “Extreme Huntress"

Panel #2 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. – 

Theme:  Sustainable use of biological resources

  • Paul Brisso, Mitchell, Brisso, Delaney & Vrieze
  • Jessica Blome, Animal Legal Defense Fund
  • Prof. Lee Foote, University of Alberta


Break: 11:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Head to the buffet, fill your plate, and get ready for the working lunch


Working Lunch from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. – 

Theme: Attorney’s – would you receive an ethical code violation if you were in Dr. Walter Palmer’s Shoes?

  • John Sullivan, Levit & Levitt, LLP
  • Basil Pastilas, Plastrias & Terrizzi

Panel #3 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Theme:  A non-attorney’s view of hunting endangered/vulnerable species.

  • Elizabeth MurdockInternational Fund for Animal Welfare
  • Glen Martin, Author “the Game Changer"
  • Paula, Cecil the Lion, non-profit organization (still waiting to hear back)
  • Josh Brones, a local executive who also hunts

Panel #4 from 2:45 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Theme: Economics of hunting endangered/ vulnerable species

  • David Hutton, Fur Institute of Canada
  • Jeff Pierce, Animal Legal Defense Fund
  • Brendan Cummings, Center for Biological Diversity

Panel #5 from 4:15 p.m. to 5:45 p.m.

Theme: The Endangered Species Act and the environmental impact of importing and hunting endangered/ vulnerable species

  • Prof. Brian Child, University of Florida
  • Anna Frostic, the Humane Society of the United States
  • Anonymous, Exotic Hunting Ranch

This event includes:  7 hours MCLE  and 1 hour  Ethics CLE to the attorney's in the audience that are registerd with the California Bar - for free.

Donations are greatly appreciated to help offset the direct costs assocated with this event.  Though we received enough donations to pay for the travel expenses for the below speakers, we now seek help with the food costs for the day.  We will be feeding everyone (breakfast, lunch, afternoon snack, and have a reception after the event.)  If you are in a position to financially contribute, please click here.  We are a registered 501(c)(3) and all donations are tax deductible. 

Distinguished Speaker Bio's - in alphabetical order:

1) Professor Barnhizer – Professor Barnhizer teaches and writes in the areas of contract law & theory, conservation law, comparative law, and the jurisprudence associated with the rule of law.  Currently the Bradford Stone Faculty Scholar at Michigan State University College of Law, and a coauthor of casebooks in the fields of Contracts and Commercial Transactions, Professor Barnhizer also directs the Conservation Law Program and the Journals Program at the Law College, as well as the MSU College of Law Institute for Comparative Law & Jurisprudence at the University of Białystok Faculty of Law in Poland. Prior to coming to Michigan State in 2001, Professor Barnhizer worked for the law firms of Hogan & Hartson and Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft in Washington, D.C., and as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Richard L. Nygaard, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit, and for the Honorable Robert B. Krupansky, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit, sitting by designation on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio.  Professor Barnhizer is an avid hunter, with interests and research in the ethics of fish, wildlife, and natural resources use and conservation.  In his work with the Conservation Law Program, Professor Barnhizer remains dedicated to democratically enacted policies on the basis of sound science and policy that promote the ability of future generations to enjoy the outdoors, including preserving the rights to hunt and fish under the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation.

2) Jessica Blome – Jessica Blome is a senior staff attorney with the Animal Legal Defense Fund where she litigates to protect wild animals.  She has focused her efforts on ending wildlife-killing competitions, dismantling USDA’s Wildlife Services, and liberating endangered wildlife from roadside zoos. Jessica began her career representing the Missouri Departments of Natural Resources and Agriculture as an assistant attorney general.  There, she set up a prosecution unit responsible for enforcement of the state animal welfare act and subsequently shut down 40 puppy mills.

3) Paul A. Brisso  - Paul Brisso is a partner in the law firm of Mitchell, Brisso, Delaney & Vrieze in Eureka CA, practicing civil litigation for over 35 years and trying over 100 jury trials.  He graduated with great distinction from University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law and was a judicial staff attorney at the CA Fifth District Court of Appeal before entering private practice. He is an avid hunter, hunting extensively in the lower 48 states, Alaska, Canada and Africa.  He was formerly part-owner of a hunting outfitting business in Montana and was a licensed hunting guide.  He is a life member and president of the California Chapter of the Wild Sheep Foundation.  He is also a member of the National Wild Sheep Foundation, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Trout Unlimited and Safari Club International.  His articles on hunting have been published in Wild Sheep, the Alaska Professional Hunter, and Safari magazines.

4) Doug S. Burdin – Safari Club International Senior Litigation Counsel, Doug Burdin obtained his J.D. from Hastings College of the Law in 1991.  He joined SCI’s litigation team in 2005, after 14 years of private practice.  For the first 11 years at a small District of Columbia law firm, Doug focused on wildlife and natural resources law, including representing a national hunting organization.  For the next three years at a large international firm, he focused on environmental, natural resources, and wildlife law.  Over the years, Doug’s cases have involved numerous species, including bears, moose, deer, elk, mountain lions, elephants, and wolves, and such laws as the ESA, NEPA, the Administrative Procedure Act, Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, along with international treaties, State laws and Constitutional provisions.  He has studied such issues as standing to litigate in court, the public trust doctrine, navigable waters jurisdiction, resident/non-resident hunting, and state ballot processes as they relate to hunting.  He is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia and is a member of the Supreme Court; the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Fifth Circuit, Ninth Circuit, Tenth Circuit, and Eleventh Circuit; and the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.  He has been admitted pro hac vice in wildlife law cases in numerous district courts, including Arizona, California, Florida, Idaho, and Vermont.  Doug has been an adjunct professor in legal writing and research at George Washington University Law School and George Mason University School of Law.

5) Dr. Brian Child – Dr. Brian Child is an Associate Professor at University of Florida, Department of Geography & Center for African Studies where he specializes in the management of protected areas and conservation of natural resources.  He attended the University of Zimbabwe, graduating with a B.Sc. in 1983.  He earned a Rhodes Scholarship for Oxford, graduating with his Ph.D. in 1988.  He was Senior Ecologist in the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Management in the Branch of Terrestrial Ecology. Trained as a resource economist, Child's primary assignment until 1990 was to analyze the economics of wildlife in mixed grazing regimes of cattle and wildlife on commercial ranches.  This interest in the economics of wildlife utilization led to his involvement in the Community Areas Management Programme for Indigenous Resources (CAMPFIRE). He is also a member and former Chair of IUCN Southern Africa Sustainable Use Specialist Group as well as a biodiversity Panel Member, Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel of the Global Environmental Facility.

6) Jen “the Archer” Cordaro - Jen Cordaro is a vegetarian - gone huntress who is working on her PhD in Public Policy and is the Western U.S. Outreach Coordinator for Sportsmen’s Alliance.  Currently working on a doctorate in public policy, with a focus on pro-hunting policy, Cordaro also holds a master’s degree in social and cultural anthropology from California Institute of Integral Studies, a master’s in human rights advocacy and non-profit management from the University of New Hampshire and a bachelor’s in geography from Humboldt State University.  Cordaro is working to promote the Sportsmen’s Alliance within the context of her professional appearances and writings, as well as driving awareness of California-specific issues and those she’s committed to personally.  In addition to her professional experience, Ms. Cordaro is a certified archery instructor, SCUBA diver, angler, backpacker, backyard cook, hiker, brewer, gardener, crafter, hunter, academic, canner, conservationist, and takes pride in her ability to live off the land with her survival and homesteading skills.  She preserves produce, processes, prepares, and cures her own wild game meat, and makes her own beer and wine from locally produced ingredients.

7) Brendan Cummings – Brendan Cummings is Senior Counsel, Strategic Litigation Group Director who joined the Center of Biological Diversity in 1998.  A graduate of Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law, Brendan has litigated dozens of Endangered Species Act cases, as well as cases under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, Clean Water Act and numerous other state and federal statutes. Prior to working for the Center, Brendan was in private practice specializing in environmental and civil-rights litigation.

8) Professor Lee Foote – Professor Lee Foote is a father, husband, and university professor of conservation biology at the University of Alberta.  He is the son of a judge and brother to three lawyers and therefore appreciates the careful deliberation of law as a reflection of social values and citizen interests.  He is a conservationist whose views have been influenced by being a forester, ecologist, working with international development agencies and three US federal agencies.  Other relevant influences include a Director on the Alberta Conservation Association, 8-year member of the Canadian Council on Animal Care at the University of Alberta and the former IUCN North American Chair for Sustainable Use.  He has supervised research or written on species of concern such as Trumpeter Swans, Northern Leopard Frogs, Lake Sturgeon, Polar Bears and Peregrine Falcons.  His resource focus is on habitat, species viability, and systems that simultaneously promote human welfare and ecological sustainability.  Finally, he is also a hunter who feeds his family primarily on locally killed deer and moose.  He acknowledges that some of the antlers might be considered trophies.

9) Anna Frostic is the Senior Attorney for wildlife and animal research issues for The Humane Society of the United States’ Animal Protection Litigation department. Over the last seven years, Anna has led HSUS’ legal efforts on a number of high profile wildlife issues, such as a petition to list African lions under the Endangered Species Act (which led the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to propose a rule to regulate the import of hunting trophies); a petition to uplist African elephants from Threatened to Endangered to strictly regulate the domestic ivory trade; and a petition to extend Endangered Species Act protections to captive chimpanzees (ultimately prohibiting their use in the pet and entertainment trade and for invasive biomedical research).

10) Michael Harris – Michael Harris is the General Litigation Counsel for Friends of Animals.

11) David Hutton – David Hutton As an Ambassador for Canada, international negotiator and trade commissioner, David Hutton has played an active, direct role with numerous international and national organizations and communities focusing on the sustainable use of our natural resources. He brings a very practical understanding of the essential contributions being made in areas of conservation, eco-system management, welfare and social economics of the appropriate use of our renewable natural resources.

12) Glen Martin – Glen Martin covered environment, natural resources and science for the San Francisco Chronicle for 17 years. He has freelanced for more than 50 magazines and journals, including Audubon, National Wildlife, Sierra, BBC Wildlife, Outside, Discover, Science Digest, Forbes, Re/Code, Wired and the Utne Reader. His latest book, Game Changer: Animal Rights and the Fate of Africa's Wildlife, was published in 2012 by the University of California Press. The book was hailed by conservation biologists as a masterful analysis of the conflict between science and animal rights activism, and was well reviewed in the general press.

13) Jeff Pierce – Jeff Pierce is a Litigation Fellow with the Animal Legal Defense Fund, where he focuses on wildlife issues.  Jeff graduated from Stanford Law School, where he served as Editor in Chief of the Stanford Journal of Animal Law and Policy and conducted legal research on behalf of animal protection organizations.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Duke University.

14) Basil Plastiras - Basil Plastiras has over 30 years of experience as a trial attorney, expert witness, mediator, arbitrator, and real estate broker.  In his legal practice, Basil focuses on general civil actions, with emphasis on attorney liability actions and commercial and real estate litigation.  He has taken more than 100 cases to trial, with 20 defense verdicts in legal malpractice cases.  His has had equal success in his representation of plaintiffs, having won numerous six- and seven-figure verdicts and punitive damages.  Basil has been active in the State Bar, San Francisco Bar and Marin Bar Associations.  He has been appointed by the San Francisco Superior Court as an arbitrator and/or mediator in over 80 civil actions.  In addition to his law practice, Basil has been retained as an expert witness in over 90 legal malpractice, legal ethics, and real estate civil actions.

15) John SullivanJohn Sullivan is a Partner at Long & Levit, LLP in San Francisco, CA, where he focuses his practice on the defense of attorneys.  Mr. Sullivan has successfully represented attorneys against claims arising out of underlying transactions and trials.  These include cases resolved at the pleading stages, mediation and trial.  He also handles attorney fee and partnership disputes.  Aside from representing professionals, Mr. Sullivan has experience handling employment, personal injury, and product liability cases as well as commercial and corporate matters.  Mr. Sullivan was named as one of Northern California’s “Rising Stars” for Professional Liability Defense in 2014.  He earned his juris doctor from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. 

16) Bruce Wagman – Bruce Wagman is a partner in Schiff Hardin’s San Francisco office, with an almost exclusive focus on animal law matters, including litigation, legislative drafting and counseling, education, and private consultation.  He has been active in animal law since 1992.  He is a coeditor of the casebook Animal Law, now in its fifth edition (2014), and coauthor of A Worldview of Animal Law.  He has been teaching Animal Law since 1996 and currently teaches on a rotating basis at three Bay Area law schools.

Again, if you are able to help co-sponsor this event, please click here.  If you would like your company logo included on any paperwork, please contact the 2015/2016 Symposium Editor:

Lastly, questions from the audience must be in writing on the day of the event. To ensure the audience obtains the information they seek from attending this event, we are giving eveyrone the opportunity now to help shape the discussion for the day. Take a short 6-question survey. Answers will be forwarded to the speakers so they can create their presentations with your current interests by 10/15/2015.



What are my transport/parking options getting to the event?

The school has a parking garage around but space is very limited as we are near various court houses and the garage has public parking. If you are able, kindly take BART.  We are 1 block away from the Civic Center/United Nations Plaza. 


Co-Sponsors of this event include (in alphabetical order):

  • Animal Legal Defense Fund

  • Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies

  • Bloomberg

  • Castello di Amorosa

  • Celtic Coffee Bar

  • Clover Stornetta Farms, Inc.

  • Lexis Nexis

  • Rainbow Grocery Cooperativer: A Worker Owned Collective

  • San Francisco Zoo

  • Safari Club International

  • Sportsmen's Alliance

Have questions about Hunting for Answers about Sustainable Use Conservation? Contact Hastings West-Northwest Journal of Environmental Law and Policy

When & Where

UC Hastings, College of the Law
198 McAllister Street
LBM Hall
San Francisco, CA 94102

Friday, October 30, 2015 from 7:30 AM to 8:00 PM (PDT)

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Hastings West-Northwest Journal of Environmental Law and Policy

A bi-annual publication dedicated to environmental issues located in the Northwest United States.

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