Professional Staff - National Agricultural Law Center

Professional Staff

Center Director
(479) 575-7640
hmpittm@uark.edu

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
erumley@uark.edu | 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
rrumley@uark.edu | 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
brollins@uark.edu

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
mrb021@uark.edu

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

Micah was born and raised in Benton, Arkansas. Growing up, his family owned a small farm which led to his interest in cattle production. He attended the University of Central Arkansas where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. After graduating from UCA in 2016, he enrolled in law school and graduated cum laude with his Juris Doctor from the University of Arkansas School of Law. While in law school, Micah 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, he 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, and secured transactions.

Staff Attorney
scm014@uark.edu 

Sarah Catherine Copper B.S., J.D.

Sarah Catherine was raised in East Tennessee, spending much of her early life in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. From an early age she was passionate about anything and everything related to food. To cultivate this passion, Sarah Catherine obtained a Bachelor’s of Science in Food Science at Auburn University. She was introduced to the regulatory side of the food industry through her degree program and an internship with Bush Brothers and Company where she focused on food safety and regulatory compliance. To build off this experience, Sarah Catherine obtained a law degree from the University Of Arkansas School Of Law and focused her studies on food and agricultural law. During her time in law school, Sarah Catherine was a clerk at The Law Group of Northwest Arkansas where she assisted on projects relating to various food safety and regulatory issues in the poultry industry. She also completed an externship with Tyson Foods’ Law Department where she assisted on projects including research on international pet food regulations, and food safety in the poultry industry.

In addition to working at the center, Sarah Catherine is working towards her LL.M in Food and Agricultural law at the University of Arkansas. At the Center, Sarah Catherine’s primary areas of research are food safety and labeling.

Communications and Special Projects Coordinator
sscato@uark.edu

Sarah Cato, B.S.

Sarah Cato, originally from Osceola, Arkansas, earned her degree in Agricultural Communications at the University of Arkansas. While working on her degree she worked two summers as a lab assistant at the University of Arkansas Research & Extension Center in Lonoke, AR. She also interned for the UA Division of Agriculture Communications Department, writing press releases, coordinating social media and constructing public relations plans. She served two semesters as the UA Entomology Club Media Specialist and she enjoys reading, hiking and running.

Research Fellow

Drew Mitchell, B.B.A.

Drew attends the University of Mississippi School of Law, where he expects to graduate in May 2021. Drew grew up on a family farm in Northeast Mississippi, where his family focuses mainly on row crops. Prior to law school, he graduated summa cum laude from Mississippi State University with a B.B.A in Finance and as a Stephen D. Lee Scholar. During the summer of 2016, Drew interned at the Office of Senator Roger F. Wicker in Washington D.C. and worked as a tour guide, researcher, and scheduler. After graduation, Drew plans to pursue a career in business law and use his background in agriculture to advocate for Mississippi farmers.

Research Fellow

Samantha Mikolajczyk B.S.

Samantha is a law student at Texas A&M University School of Law in Fort Worth, Texas, where she expects to graduate in 2021. Samantha grew up in South Texas on a small strawberry farm run by her family. She received her undergraduate degree from Texas A&M University with a B.S. in University Studies-Leadership and minors in English and Bioenvironmental Science. Before attending Texas A&M School of Law she interned for Congressman Jeb Hensarling in Washington, D.C. After returning from D.C. Samantha ran her family’s strawberry farm. While at Texas A&M Law Samantha has been involved in the Agricultural Law Society, is on Law Review and was a policy intern for Texas Governor Greg Abbott. She hopes to take her passion for environmental and agricultural issues and make a difference in the lives of farmers and ranchers.

Research Fellow

Kevin Hivick, B.A., GradCertPH

Kevin Hivick is a law student at Washington & Lee University School of Law, where he expects to graduate in 2021. Kevin has worked on various farms and ranches, and most recently worked with the United States Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service inspecting red meat and poultry facilities. In addition to attending law school, Kevin and his wife raise dairy goats, bottle calves, and poultry on a small farm in the southern Shenandoah Valley. Kevin holds a Graduate Certificate in Public Health from the University of Florida and a Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Virginia. Kevin is a member of the American Agricultural Law Association. After graduation, he plans to practice business law while advocating for agricultural and natural resources stakeholders.

Research Fellow

Grant (Eli) Earich, B.S.

Eli is currently studying at Capital University Law School and anticipates graduating in May 2021. Eli grew up as an active member of both 4-H and FFA and today he remains a vital part of his family’s Angus cow/calf beef operation in south-central Ohio. He earned his B.S. in Agricultural Economics at the University of Kentucky where he was actively involved in Alpha Gamma Rho Fraternity and Block and Bridle. Before beginning law school, Eli worked full time as a Commodity Merchandiser for Archer Daniels Midland in Des Moines, IA. While in law school, he has worked part time in the Pickaway County Prosecutor’s Office and is a member of the American Agricultural Law Association. Upon graduation, he intends to use his J.D. to advocate for farmers and ranchers across the country.

Research Fellow

Scout Snowden, B.A.

Scout is a second-year law student at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, William H. Bowen School of Law. He graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2018 with a major in Political Science and a minor in Agricultural Business. During his undergraduate career, he worked for Senator Tom Cotton in Washington, D.C. focusing primarily on agricultural and energy policy. Since beginning law school, Scout has clerked with the Pulaski County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office; Friday, Eldredge & Clark; and the Barber Law Firm. In his final year, he will clerk for Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard; Wright, Lindsey, Jennings; and Williams & Anderson. He is an apprentice on the Law Review and is currently writing a note on campaign finance disclosures. After completing law school, he hopes to have a practice in agricultural, environmental, and energy law.

Research Fellow

Lindsay De May, B.S.

Lindsay is currently a student at Vermont Law School and anticipates graduating in 2021 with a JD and Master’s in Food and Agriculture Law and Policy. Lindsay graduated from Syracuse University with a BS cum laude in Food Studies, concentrating on food politics and governance. Before starting law school, Lindsay spent a summer working on a farm in the Finger Lakes, and spent two years in Los Angeles working in farmer’s markets and teaching gardening in public schools. Lindsay is a student clinician in the Food and Agriculture Clinic at Vermont Law School, focusing her research on the Food Safety Modernization Act. She serves as the Chair of her law school’s Food and Agriculture Law Society and the co-President of the National Food Law Student Network. Lindsay’s interest in food is continuously evolving: currently, it’s on organic waste and anaerobic digestion, the antitrust lawsuits between dairy farmers and cooperatives, and the development of ecosystem services.

Research Fellow

Liz Sharpe, B.S., B.A., M.S.

Liz Sharpe is a part-time law student at Seton Hall University School of Law, where she expects to graduate in May 2022. Since 2014, Liz has worked in food safety assisting companies in developing and implementing food safety risk management strategies. She graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a M.S. in Food Safety Regulation, and from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a B.S. in Food Science and a B.A. in Political Science. Following law school, Liz hopes to continue her work in food safety by shifting to working in food regulation.

Research Fellow

Gatlin Squires, B.S.

Gatlin is currently a student at the University of Oklahoma College of Law, where he will graduate in 2021. Growing up on a small cattle operation in central Oklahoma, Gatlin became involved in production agriculture at an early age. Through his participation in the National FFA Organization, he was a national champion in Livestock Evaluation, Parliamentary Procedure, and an American Star in Agriscience finalist. He went on to serve an Oklahoma State FFA Officer and received a degree in Agribusiness from Oklahoma State University in 2018. In college, Gatlin spent most of his time with Collegiate Farm Bureau, OSU Homecoming Celebration, and Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity. A Comfort Scholar at OU Law, Gatlin hopes to pursue a career in litigation where he will advocate for agricultural interests.

Research Fellow

Luke Vance, B.A.

Luke is a student at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, William H. Bowen School of Law, where he expects to graduate in May 2020. He graduated from Hendrix College in 2015 with a major in Politics and a minor in International Business. After graduating from Hendrix, he worked at an agriculture and logistics company named Bruce Oakley, Inc for three and a half years. Since attending law school, Luke has externed for Judge Waymond Brown at the Arkansas Court of Appeals. He has also clerked for Wright, Lindsey, Jennings and Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard. Luke is also Managing Editor of Law Review. After graduating law school, he hopes to have a practice in agricultural and business law.

Research Fellow

Harley Montoya, B.S.

Harley is a second year law student at Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon, where he expects to graduate in 2022.  Harley earned a B.S. in Biology with a minor in Music Performance from Pacific University (Forest Grove, OR). Harley’s senior capstone project focused on urban development and its impacts on wildlife populations. While at Pacific, Harley was a 4 year competitor in NCAA College Football. During that time, he was also a legal intern in the Office of the General Counsel for Renown Health in Reno, Nevada, where he focused on legal research and writing, HIPAA, and policy and procedure writing. This experience positioned Harley for a full-time position in the Health Information Management Department of Renown Health until he enrolled at Lewis and Clark Law School in the fall of 2019. After graduation from law school, Harley plans to use his education to advocate for farmers and ranchers throughout the country.

Research Fellow

Hannah Scott, B.A., M.S.

Hannah is a third-year student at the University of Cincinnati College of Law in Cincinnati, Ohio. Hannah grew up farming with her family and remains engaged in the cattle, row crop, forage, and hop farm in southern Ohio. She is active in the agricultural community as a board member with her county Farm Bureau and trustee with a local agricultural museum, as well as a graduate of Ohio Farm Bureau Federation’s AgriPOWER Institute.  Hannah earned her B.A. from Duke University where she studied sociology, psychology, and documentary studies graduating summa cum laude with Distinction in the Arts and Sciences. She earned her M.S. from The Ohio State University where she studied rural sociology and conducted original research on the interest groups engaged with federal agricultural policymaking. Since 2015, Hannah has worked with The Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences in rural business and cooperative development. She is passionate about helping farmers and rural communities and looks forward to using her legal knowledge and skills to do so.

Research Fellow

Jordan Hartman, B.S.

Jordan is a law student at Lewis & Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon, where he expects to graduate in May 2022. Jordan attended college at The Ohio State University, where he earned his B.S. in the School of the Environment and Natural Resources, a part of the College of Food, Agriculture, and Environmental Science. It was during this time that Jordan was exposed to agriculture, water use, and resource governance. He spent time working at the Metro Parks, a public park system managed by the city of Columbus as well as volunteering in university programs that focused on natural resources. Through these experiences, he developed an interest in the law and how it affects land use and agriculture. After graduating law school, Jordan hopes to remain in the Pacific Northwest and represent the interests of natural resource stakeholders.

Research Fellow

Sydney Sims, B.S.

Sydney is a law student at the University of Arkansas, William H. Bowen School of Law, where she expects to graduate in May 2022. Sydney earned her B.S. in Agricultural Business and minor in Political Science from the University of Arkansas where she was an active member of the Bumper’s College Ambassador Program and professional agricultural sorority Sigma Alpha. Prior to law school, she interned at the Arkansas Department of Agriculture where she conducted international market research used to encourage local farmers to enroll in SUSTA programs. After graduation, she hopes to use her J.D. to advocate for agriculture, sustainability and food security.

Research Fellow

Joshua Weinheimer, B.S.

Josh is a second-year law student at the University of South Dakota School of Law in Vermillion, South Dakota. He is the fourth-generation of a family farm in Onida, South Dakota, raising wheat, corn, sunflowers, cows, sheep, and chickens. Before law school, Josh graduated from South Dakota State University summa cum laude with a B.S. in Agricultural Business. He twice interned with the South Dakota Attorney General’s Office gaining exposure to the state justice system through many criminal cases. Today, Josh continues to be heavily involved on the family farm. He also writes for Law Review, is the president of the St. Thomas More Society, and is a member of the Ag Law Society and Federalist Society. After law school, Joshua hopes to serve South Dakota farm and ranch families and advance their values in government and the culture.

Research Fellow

Garrett Kays, B.S.

Garrett is a law student at Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, where he expects to graduate in 2022. Garrett grew up as an active member of 4-H and he remains involved in his family’s Angus cow/calf operation in southeast Kansas. Before attending law school, Garrett worked in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) as the Special Assistant to the Chief Agricultural Negotiator, in the Office of Agricultural Affairs. Prior to his time at USTR, Garrett worked for U.S. Senator Jerry Moran as an agricultural legislative correspondent, where he assisted the Senator with policy related to agriculture, energy, environment, international trade, and Indian affairs. Before graduating from Kansas State University with a degree in agricultural economics, he interned for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, & Forestry; Land O’ Lakes, Inc.; the Kansas State University Office of Governmental Relations; and the Kansas Department of Agriculture. Upon graduating from law school, Garrett is interested in pursuing a career in trade, regulatory, or transactional law.

Research Fellow

David Lee, B.A., M.A.

David is currently a third-year student at the University of Arkansas School of Law in Fayetteville and expects to graduate in May 2021. He attended college at Missouri State University, where he earned degrees in history and Spanish. He then completed a Master’s of Arts in cross-cultural ministry at Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas, Texas. From internship experiences while in seminary and from the quiet influence of family members who are part of the legal community, he decided to attend law school. He has externed with the Federal Public Defenders for the Western District of Arkansas, has been a student attorney with the law school’s Immigration Law Clinic since January, 2020, and is a staff editor of the Journal of Food Law and Policy for which he has written a forthcoming article on organic waste bans and food insecurity issues in the United States. Prior to joining The National Agricultural Law Center, he worked as a law clerk for Matthews, Campbell, Rhoads, McClure, & Thompson. He hopes to use his J.D. to serve in the area of immigration law after graduation.

Communications Specialist

Sara Gardner

Sara Gardner is a student at the University of Arkansas pursuing a major in International Economics with minors in Agricultural Leadership and Spanish.  She currently serves as the Arkansas 4-H State President and has been an active member of the organization for ten years. In 2018, Sara was inducted into the Arkansas 4-H Hall of Fame and was the recipient of the Arkansas 4-H Governor’s Award.  On campus, she serves as an Honors College Ambassador and is a member of the Student Congress team, Leadership Walton, Associated Student Government Freshman Leadership Forum, and Collegiate Farm Bureau. A 2018 Distinguished Honors graduate from Fayetteville High School, Sara plans to graduate from the University of Arkansas in 2022 and then attend law school.

Communications Specialist

Anna Mathis

Anna Mathis is a Honors student at the University of Arkansas majoring in Agricultural Communications and Agricultural Leadership, expecting to graduate in 2023. She currently serves as the Arkansas FFA State President and is a GE-Ronald Reagan Presidential National Scholar. On campus Anna is a member of the Sigma Alpha professional agricultural sorority, Collegiate Farm Bureau, Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow, and Collegiate FFA. She will be serving as a student senator on behalf of the Bumpers College and Associated Student Government, along with serving as a freshman Honors peer mentor. 

Communications Specialist

Elizabeth Berner

Elizabeth Berner is a student at the University of Arkansas pursuing a major in Agricultural Communications with a minor in Agricultural Leadership, where she expects to graduate in December of 2021.  Elizabeth is involved in several organizations at the University including Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow and the professional agriculture sorority Sigma Alpha, for whom she is also the Philanthropy chair. She has worked as part of the media team for the Spring 2020 Arkansas State FFA Convention writing press releases and photographing award winners. She graduated from Prairie Grove High School, where she was active in the National Honor Society, FFA, and the co-leader of the book club. After graduation, Elizabeth hopes to pursue a masters’ in Agricultural and Extension Education, with a focus in communications, at the University of Arkansas.