Professional Staff - National Agricultural Law Center

Professional Staff

Center Director
(479) 575-7640 

Harrison M. Pittman, B.S., J.D., LL.M.

Harrison received his Juris Doctor from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law, after attending Mississippi State University and graduating from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He then earned an LL.M. in Agricultural Law from the University of Arkansas School of Law’s Graduate Program in Agricultural Law. Harrison has worked at the Center since 2001.  During that time, his title and job duties have spanned the range of graduate assistant, staff attorney, co-director, interim director and currently, director; in which capacity he has served since 2007.

He has taught at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law as part of the Ben J. Altheimer Distinguished Professorship for Agricultural Law, and has also served as a visiting professor at the Drake University Law School.  In addition, he has taught Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Introduction to Agricultural Law in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food, & Life Sciences, Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness.  In that role, he was awarded the 2011-2012 Agricultural Business Club Teaching Award.

He is an active member of the American Agricultural Law Association (AALA), the nation’s only professional organization focused on the legal needs of the agricultural community, and was the first recipient of the AALA’s Excellence in Agricultural Law award in 2010.  Additionally, he is an active member of the Arkansas Bar Association, where he helped found the Agricultural Law Section, later served as interim chair and chair, and currently serves as vice-chair.  He is a frequent presenter on a range of topics and issues, including the farm bill, water law, and environmental law. He has authored articles on numerous subjects, including the National Organic Program, the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act, the constitutionality of corporate farming laws, pesticide regulation and litigation, agritourism, states’ recreational use statutes, the Packers and Stockyards Act, agricultural bankruptcy issues, and environmental laws impacting agriculture.

Senior Staff Attorney
(479) 387-2331 | C.V.

Elizabeth Rumley, B.A., J.D., LL.M.

Beth was raised on a small family farm in Ida, Michigan. She attended Michigan State University, where she was an active competitor, president, and captain of the Mock Trial team that participated in competitions across the Midwest. She also interned in the chambers of Magistrate Judge Virginia M. Morgan, United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan. After graduating from MSU in 2004, Beth returned home and commuted to law school at the University of Toledo, where she graduated cum laude in May of 2007. While in law school, she volunteered as a coach of the Ida High School Mock Trial Team and continued to assist with the MSU team. In addition, she interned at the Michigan prosecutor’s offices of Monroe and Lenawee counties, with the United States Attorney’s Office in Toledo, and for the Honorable David A. Katz of the Northern District of Ohio. From 2005-2008, she was also employed by the Toledo law firm of Cosme, D’Angelo and Szollosi.  She is licensed to practice law in Michigan, Ohio and Oklahoma.

At the Center, her primary research and scholarship focus is on legal issues in animal agriculture, and she frequently lectures on those issues and others to audiences nationwide.  Additionally, she is an adjunct faculty member in the  University of Arkansas’ Center of  Excellence for Poultry Science, Animal  Science Department,  and the Agricultural  Economics and Agribusiness Department.  Further, Mrs. Rumley works closely with and is on the advisory board of the University  of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s Center for Food Animal Well-Being.

She has co-taught a course titled “Animals and Agricultural Production, Law and Policy”  several times at the University of Oklahoma College of Law and most recently at the University of Nebraska College of Law, has developed and teaches a course on legal issues in animal agriculture through the Dale Bumpers College of  Agricultural, Food, & Life Sciences at the University of Arkansas, and teaches a course on agriculture and the environment, also through the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food, & Life Sciences at the University of Arkansas.

Senior Staff Attorney
(479) 575-2636 | C.V.

Rusty W. Rumley, B.S., J.D., LL.M.

Rusty was born and raised on a family farm in Cogar, Oklahoma. He graduated magna cum laude from Oklahoma State University in 2004 with a B.S. in AgriBusiness and in 2007 earned his juris doctor from the University of Oklahoma. While attending the University of Oklahoma he was a member of the American Indian Law Review and worked part-time for Oklahoma Farm Bureau Legal Foundation.  After law school, Rusty earned his LL.M in Agricultural Law at the University of Arkansas.  He is licensed to practice law in the states of Oklahoma and Michigan.

Rusty has published law review articles discussing the future application of special use valuation for inherited farmland, “right to farm” statutes, and the enforcement of animal cruelty statutes by private organizations. He has also written on landowner liability, agritourism, food labeling, local food production, business organizations, crop insurance, estate planning, leasing, and other land use topics in his work at the Center. Further, Rusty presents around the country to producer, consumer, extension, industry and legal groups on an array of topics.

Additionally, he has  co-taught a course titled “Animals and Agricultural Production, Law and Policy”  several times at the University of Oklahoma College of Law and most recently at the University of Nebraska College of Law and teaches an introduction to agricultural law course through the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food, & Life Sciences at the University of Arkansas.  He is also an adjunct faculty member in the  University of Arkansas’ Animal  Science Department  and the Agricultural  Economics and Agribusiness Department.

His primary areas of interest are in estate planning, taxation, business organizations, landowner liability, leasing and agritourism.

Staff Attorney

Brigit Rollins, B.A., J.D.

Brigit began her life in Sonoma County, in the heart of California’s wine country. Growing up, she was surrounded by small farms, dairies, and wineries, which ultimately led to a passion for agriculture and the environment. She attended Sonoma State University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in environmental studies, and a minor in studio arts. While at Sonoma State, Brigit studied different types of agricultural methods and how those methods could be used to promote environmental sustainability. After graduating from Sonoma State in 2015, she started as a law student at Lewis & Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon. While at Lewis & Clark, she worked as a student clerk for the Western Resources Legal Center, where she worked on cases assisting small ranches, farms, and municipalities. During her time at Lewis & Clark, she also interned with the California Farm Bureau Federation, and worked as a law clerk for the Sacramento-based environmental law firm Somach Simmons & Dunn. While at the California Farm Bureau, Brigit focused on Environmental Species Act issues and water law issues, as well as issues specific to California. While at Somach Simmons & Dunn, Brigit expanded her work on water law and participated in work involving federal Indian law. On campus, Brigit was on the board of Lewis & Clark’s Food & Ag Law Society and served as a student member of the ABA Public Lands Committee.  She is licensed to practice law in Oregon.

Brigit began her work at the Center as a research fellow during her second year of law school. As a research fellow, Brigit worked on a wide variety of agricultural law topics ranging from liability issues to the new frontier of lab-grown meat. In 2019, Brigit graduated from Lewis & Clark and joined the Center full-time. At the Center, her primary area of research and scholarship is environmental law as it intersects with agriculture. She maintains an interest in promoting sustainability and environmental health through agriculture and resource use.

Staff Attorney
(479) 222-2507

Micah Brown, B.A., J.D.

Micah received his Juris Doctor, graduating cum laude, from the University of Arkansas School of Law, after earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Central Arkansas. While in law school, he worked as a law clerk for the Office of the Arkansas Attorney General in the Consumer Protection Division. During his time clerking for the Attorney General, he worked on various agricultural, environmental, and public utility law issues.

During his second year of law school, Micah began working at the Center as a research fellow. As a research fellow, Micah primarily worked on tracking and analyzing agricultural and environmental federal litigation. After graduating law school in May of 2020, he joined the Center full-time. At the Center, his primary areas of research are finance and credit, commercial transactions, secured transactions, federal crop insurance, and foreign ownership of agricultural land. Micah is licensed to practice law in the state of Arkansas. Additionally, he is a certified mediator in the state of Arkansas.

Communications & Special Projects Coordinator

Drew Viguet, B.A., M.A

Drew was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, but grew up in Springfield, Missouri. In his early years, he was interested in writing, public speaking, music, and drama. He did journalism throughout high school, developing his passion for effective writing and communications. He served as editor-in-chief of the school’s newsmagazine his senior year.

Returning to his birth state, Drew attended college at the University of Arkansas. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, with a News/Editorial focus. He then earned a Master of Arts in Communication, also from the University of Arkansas. During his time at the university, Drew worked as a staff reporter, assistant news editor, and copy editor for The Arkansas Traveler, the student-led newspaper of the University of Arkansas. He also completed a communications internship working in the College of Education & Health Professions. While earning his master’s, Drew worked as a graduate assistant, teaching courses of Communication 1313: Public Speaking.

Drew has also worked for Acorn: The Influence Company, which is based out of Rogers, Arkansas, taught as a substitute teacher, and recently worked in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food, and Life Sciences at the University of Arkansas, in the Department of Agricultural Economics & Agribusiness.

At the National Agricultural Law Center, Drew works on conference publicity, webinar programming, press releases, social media, and more.

Website Editor

Ramie Parsons, B.S.

Ramie spent most of her childhood in Western Arkansas, where she graduated from Waldron High School.  While there, she participated in journalism and also worked during the summer for the Waldron News.  After attending the University of Arkansas, she earned her B.S. in Human Environmental Sciences, part of the Dale Bumpers College of  Agricultural, Food, & Life Sciences.  Her concentration was in Childhood Development from Birth to Three Years, and she put those skills to use during the several years she spent working with both typically developing and special needs children, providing care and teaching developmentally appropriate practices.  Since then, she has turned her focus to part-time website editing at the National Agricultural Law Center.  Additionally, she operates her own business as a medical billing and coding specialist for mental health professionals in private practice.

Research Fellow

Julie Anton, B.A.

Julie Anton is a student at Faulkner University’s Jones School of Law in Montgomery Alabama. She expects to graduate in 2025. Julie left her small hometown of Enterprise Alabama to earn her Bachelor’s in Communications from the University of West Florida. From there, she pursued her dreams of being a writer in Atlanta, Seattle, and many places in between. She came back to Alabama to earn her law degree and would like to utilize her skills in Ag law to advocate for alternative medicinal plants and their production. She enjoys playing drums in her band and snuggles with her rescue pit bull, Smush.

Research Fellow

Annalisa Miller, B.S.

Annalisa attends the University of New Mexico School of Law, where she expects to graduate in May 2024. Annalisa grew up on a cattle ranch in northeastern New Mexico. She actively participated in 4-H and FFA and served as the New Mexico State FFA President. Annalisa graduated from New Mexico State University with a B.S. in Agricultural and Extension Education and a minor in Journalism and Mass Communications. While at NMSU, she participated in the National Agri-Marketing Association, Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow, and served as a College of ACES Ambassador. Currently, she is a member of the Environmental Law Society and helped organize an agricultural law speaker series to generate interest in agriculture within the law school. After graduation, Annalisa aspires to use her law degree to be a voice for American agriculturists and rural communities.

Research Fellow

Kerry McClaughry, B.S.

Kerry attends the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, where she expects to graduate in May 2024. Kerry graduated with a B.S. in Environmental Science and a minor in Education from Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania. While at Juniata,  Kerry was a member of the Swim Team, the Lacrosse Team, Students Athletes Board, and P.A. Special Olympics. She also spent a semester at their Remote Field Station on Raystown Lake, Pennsylvania, where she conducted a research project on the effects of lake eutrophication on macrophyte growth. Currently, Kerry is an Event Coordinator for the Maryland Environmental Law Society at her law school. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in environmental law.

Research Fellow

Candice Wilson, B.S., M.S.

Candice Wilson is a second-year law student at Washburn University School of Law. She is a junior editor for the Washburn Law Journal and a member of the Moot Court Team. Prior to attending law school, Candice served as an economist with the United States Department of Agriculture where she was an oil crops outlook analyst. Additionally, she served as the manager of ethanol trade policy and economics for the U.S. Grains Council where she worked on trade policy issues in addition to providing global economic analysis.

Wilson earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural economics from Kansas State University.

Research Fellow

Taylor Mason, B.S.

Taylor Mason, Georgia native, is a law student from Atlanta attending Southern University Law Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where she expects to graduate in 2024. Taylor graduated cum laude with her B.S. in Sport Management with an emphasis on Sport and Entertainment Law, and minoring in Sociology, from the University of West Georgia, in December of 2018. During this time, she served executive memberships in organizations advocating for the civil rights of underrepresented communities on and off her campus. Taylor also held membership as a novice debater for the University of West Georgia Debate Team.

After graduation, she clerked for a business law firm in Atlanta before coming to law school. Taylor believes that Intellectual Property Rights are the central parts of the basket-related issues in environmental and land use policy. While she is most interested in contracts, trademarks and trade secrets, Taylor hopes to pursue a career within this realm of Intellectual Property supporting the protections in Agricultural Law.

Research Fellow

Kylee Boomsma, B.S.

Kylee attends the University of South Dakota Knudson School of Law where she expects to graduate in May 2024. While working to obtain her juris doctorate, she enjoys serving on the executive board of the University of South Dakota Knudson School of Law Agricultural Law Society and being a member of the University of South Dakota Knudson School of Law Environmental Law Society. Kylee’s passion for agriculture comes from growing up on a third-generation family farm. While growing up on the family farm, she was active in both 4-H and FFA. Kylee continued to pursue her passion within agriculture by attending South Dakota State University where she graduated cum laude with a double major in Agricultural Business and Agricultural Science, as well as a double minor in Animal Science and Agronomy. After graduation, Kylee hopes to utilize her law degree to be a voice for farmers and ranchers within South Dakota’s rural communities.

Research Fellow

Nathaniel Dupree, B.S.

Nathan is a native to rural Northwest Georgia, where his passion for agriculture originated. He credits his FFA advisors for nurturing that passion throughout high school which ultimately led him to Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College. While at ABAC, Nathan received a Bachelor of Science in Diversified Agriculture and met his wife, Faith. He was a member of Alpha Gamma Rho, Collegiate FFA, and Georgia Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers.

After graduation in 2015, Nathan joined Georgia Farm Bureau in the Commodities and Marketing Department as the Grain Desk Manager and later as District Federation Manager, where he served 15 county farm bureaus in northwest Georgia until starting law school. Nathan attends Thomas Goode Jones School of Law at Faulkner University, where he expects to graduate in May of 2024. Prior to Faulkner, Nathan earned two CALI awards for Legal Research, Writing and Analysis and ranked in the top 10% of his 1L class. Following law school, Nathan looks forward to assisting food and fiber producers again and serving the agriculture community.

Research Fellow

Tanner Weber, B.A.

Tanner attends the University of Arkansas School of Law, where he expects to graduate in May 2024. Previously, Tanner graduated from the University of Arkansas after earning a B.A. in Political Science with highest distinction. While at law school, Tanner clerked at a private firm drafting statutes for the Owaska, Cherokee, and Delaware tribes, as well as the Iowa Nation. Further, he served as a research assistant for a law professor focusing on the regulation of cryptocurrency. After graduation, Tanner hopes to work in public service to the Cherokee Nation.

Research Fellow

Michael L. Byrd Jr, B.A.

Michael attends North Carolina Central University School of Law, where he expects to graduate in May of 2024. Michael graduated cum laude with his B.A. in Political Science from the Illustrious North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University. While at North Carolina A&T State University, Michael joined the Eta Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., and served as Peer Mentor to incoming students. Before beginning law school, Michael worked as a Loan Processor. In this position he ensured small businesses, specifically farms and family businesses received loans throughout the pandemic. Currently, Michael is the chair of the Moot Court Board and is pursuing a Law & Technology Certification. Michael is excited to assist the community through Agricultural Law and make a meaningful impact on the community.

Communications Specialist

Sara Gardner Hedgecock, B.S.

Sara Gardner Hedgecock is a 2021 graduate of the University of Arkansas with a degree in Agricultural Economics and minors in Ag Leadership, Economics, International Economic Development, and Spanish. At that time, she was recognized as the Agribusiness & Ag Economics Department’s Outstanding Graduating Senior.  Currently, she is pursuing a Master’s degree in Agricultural Economics at the University of Arkansas and will graduate in May 2023.


Sara has held internships at The White House, in the Office of U.S. Senator John Boozman, and at Walmart Corporate.  Sara has worked at the National Agricultural Law Center as a communications specialist since 2018.  She served on the National 4-H Young Alumni Advisory Committee and was an active member in Arkansas 4-H, having served as both State President and Vice President.  She has been a passionate volunteer for veterans through her personal platform “Pledge to Patriotism” since the age of 8. Sara aspires to be a voice for agriculture and veterans and uphold a lifelong commitment to faith, family, and serving others.

Communications Specialist

Tru Joi Curtis

Tru Joi Curtis is a 17-year-old rising Junior at the University of Arkansas, majoring in Agricultural Communications with a minor in English. She hopes to continue her educational journey into law school.

Tru Joi lives on a small family farm with her mom, grandfather, and over 100 animals. She graduated in the top 5 of the class of 2022 from Westville High School with various honors. Tru Joi was very active in FFA competing at the national level in Parliamentary Procedures, receiving her Oklahoma FFA State Degree and she expects to receive her FFA American Degree in the fall of 2023. She had the honor of being a media room intern at the 2023 Arkansas FFA Convention. Tru Joi is also a member of Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow, FFA Alumni and Supporters, and Pre-Law Society at the University of Arkansas.