Animal Advocates Are Earning Their LLM in Animal Law To Make a Difference

Animal Advocates

The Center for Animal Law Studies (CALS) Animal Law LLM (Master of Laws) at Lewis & Clark Law School is the world’s only advanced legal degree program in animal law. The LLM, or Master of Laws, is for U.S. and international law school graduates who want to focus on animal law in practice, academia, research, or public policy. 

Our alumni from more than 20 countries are leading efforts worldwide to embed animal law in legal systems and advance the practice and legal scholarship of animal law. The Animal Law LLM is offered both in-person and now also fully online.

Consultancy and Scholarship

Since her graduation from the LLM program, Alice Di Concetto (LLM ‘16) has become a lecturer in European animal law at the Sorbonne Law School and in Animal Ethics at Sciences Po (Bachelor of Arts and Sciences). She additionally founded Animal Law Europe, a consultancy firm based in Brussels that specializes in EU animal law and policies. Animal Law Europe provides services to major EU-based animal protection nonprofits and public administrations. 

Prior to her arrival in Brussels, Alice completed a two-year appointment as a fellow in the Animal Law & Policy Program at Harvard Law School. Her research at Harvard focused on the U.S. Farm Bill’s impacts on animal welfare, and she completed additional research on the legal status of animals in comparative constitutional law. 

Alice’s publication record includes several law review articles in legal journals, including the French Review of Animal Law and the International Economic Law Review

Advocating for Animals in New Zealand

Animal Advocates

Before she enrolled in the Animal Law LLM program, Bianka Atlas (LLM ‘20) enjoyed a varied human rights career, with expertise in children’s rights and refugee law, both in New Zealand and internationally. “The variety and quality of courses and the support I received from my professors surpassed my expectations,” she says of the Animal Law LLM program. “I have gained expertise in developing and using the law strategically and creatively to advocate for animals—through litigation, legislation, policy, and lobbying.” 

Advancing Animal Law Issues and Legislation in Asia

Lyudmila (Lu) Shegay (LLM ‘20) is a co-founder and managing director at the Institute of Animal Law of Asia (IALA), an educational research center that she launched following her studies at CALS. IALA focuses on animal law issues and legislation all over Asia and the world. “I received so much support and knowledge from faculty and staff of the Center for Animal Law Studies,” she says, “and it became an integral part of my personal and professional development.”

As part of the 2021–2022 CALS Global Ambassadors program, Lu created a project called “Enhancing Legal Regulations of Aquatic Animals in Kazakhstan.” The project aims to raise awareness about the detrimental effects of human activities on aquatic animals and the need to extend legal protections to aquatic animals. Lu is also leading an International Institute of Animal Law project that will serve as an educational platform for students across Kazakhstan. With the participation of lawyers, veterinary doctors, and researchers in the fields of animal psychology and animal ethics, the platform will facilitate student engagement in seminars, workshops, and legal resources.

Teaching and Serving in the Legal System in Kenya

The Hon. Justice Nzioki wa Makau (LLM ‘17) chose to pursue an Animal Law LLM at Lewis & Clark Law School due to his interest in wildlife conservation. “The Animal Law LLM program at the Center for Animal Law Studies and Lewis & Clark is highly regarded back home,” he says. 

 Hon. Justice Nzioki wa Makau is a senior member of the Kenyan judiciary and Chairman of the Board of Tsavo Trust, which is a field-based, Kenyan not-for-profit conservation organization. The Tsavo Trust works to protect wildlife and habitat and promote community engagement in conservation challenges. The Tsavo Trust is headquartered in the Tsavo Conservation Area of Kenya, which holds significant wildlife populations, including extremely large numbers of Kenya’s iconic wild animals, such as elephant and black rhino. 

Working in Emergent Areas of Law

David Rosengard (LLM ’16) is a staff attorney at the Animal Legal Defense Fund. He says the Animal Law LLM program offers a unique opportunity to acquire a deeper understanding of animal law issues in a manner that is tailored to each student’s interests. “For me,” he says, “this meant I was able to not only expand my work in animal law as a field, but also identify and build synergy where animal law intersects with emergent areas being developed by other legal practitioners and advocates—such as victim’s rights law.” 

David was able to build on his prior career in higher education to advance his goal of  thoroughly integrating animal law into how students and attorneys learn and think about the law. “I can say with certainty that my life—professionally and personally—has been profoundly changed for the better by my experiences in Lewis & Clark Law School’s animal law program.”

About the Center for Animal Legal Studies LLM in Animal Law

The Animal Law LLM at Lewis & Clark Law School is the world’s only advanced legal degree program in animal law. The Animal Law LLM is offered in-person and fully online. The program is designed for U.S. and international law school graduates who want to focus on animal law in practice, academia, research, or public policy.

Applicants must be a graduate of an accredited U.S. or international law school. In the online LLM, courses are delivered asynchronously, allowing students to maintain professional, family, and other commitments. Instructors are renowned animal law scholars and practitioners from around the world.

The Animal Law LLM prepares students for advancement in the career path they choose, including specialized practice; policy development, implementation, or enforcement; scholarship or teaching; advocacy; executive leadership; and more.

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