Environmental Law

Chair Report

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November 2023

Fall is one of the most special times of year for ELS.  Every year, ELS works tirelessly to plan for the Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite®. This year, we experienced record attendance. 

Scenes from the 2023 Yosemite Conference

On October 19, over 800 registrants including lawyers and future lawyers joined together for the SOLD OUT 32nd Annual Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite®. The conference brings together lawyers, law students, professors, consultants, engineers, and their families for three days of continuing legal education, outdoor activities, and fun. The Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite® is designed to hold MCLE sessions in the mornings and open the afternoons for attendees to connect with nature. 

Scenes from the 2023 Yosemite Conference

Andy Sawyer, Executive Committee Advisor and State Water Board Assistant Chief Counsel, gathers volunteers from the ELS membership to lead afternoon activities within and around the park. The weather was warm, and the skies were clear, giving everyone the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors. ELS even had fly fishing, mountain biking, and a dog-friendly hike. ELS hopes all participants enjoyed the programming, feel refreshed, and inspired.

A few of the conference highlights included local tribal leaders holding a tribal opening ceremony. On Friday evening, we enjoyed the return of the Family BBQ complete with a live Bluegrass band. On Saturday evening, ELS awarded Rick Frank with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Matt Rodriquez and Shannon Morrisey interviewed Rick prior to the Saturday evening banquet where we celebrated and presented Rick with the Lifetime Achievement Award. The interview will be available on the ELS website soon. The Saturday evening dinner speaker was Dr. Tiara Moore of Black in Marine Science. I encourage all to visit the BIMS website [insert link: http://www.blackinmarinescience.org/] to learn more about BIMS.

Scenes from the 2023 Yosemite Conference

ELS plans to post conference recordings in its online catalog to be purchased individually or as a bundle on the CLA website.

For 2024, ELS will be holding the conference September 12-15.  Please mark your calendars.

Scenes from the 2023 Yosemite Conference

Also, as Chair of ELS, I want to congratulate those that have passed the California State Bar Exam. If you are not already a member of ELS, please consider joining the section and let us know how to best serve you. ELS will have several webinars and in person programming available to help you sharpen your skills as an environmental lawyer. We are here for you!

Please follow ELS on LinkedIn, Instagram (claenviro), and X.

Scenes from the 2023 Yosemite Conference

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