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Environmental Faculty

Students work closely with program faculty during their three years of law school and build relationships that continue long after graduation. Our faculty members have substantial practice experience in natural resources and environmental law, and are eager to pass this experience on to their students. From our faculty's diverse backgrounds, students cultivate an ability to look at issues from a variety of perspectives.

Each faculty member contributes his or her own unique talents beyond the classroom as well; they sponsor law reviews and student groups, coach competition teams, and work on environmental cases and causes. Our faculty also contributes important scholarship in the areas of environmental, natural resources, and Indian law, often working with student research assistants on these endeavors.

Beyond the classroom, students benefit from their work with clinical supervisors, who provide a wealth of expertise about natural resources and environmental law. Additionally, we have faculty who hold expertise in complementary areas such as agricultural law, environmental legal research, renewable energy transactions, and environmental crimes. In sum, our students are part of a strong community of faculty and mentors that support them as they undertake their legal studies and careers.

Irma Russell became Dean of The University of Montana School of Law on July 1, 2009. Prior to coming to Montana, Dean Russell was the NELPI Professor and Director of the National Energy-Environment Law & Policy Institute at the University of Tulsa College of Law.

Dean Russell's areas of expertise include environmental law and ethics.  Her courses include Environmental Law, International Environmental Law, Natural Resources Law, Administrative Law,  Environmental Law Seminar, International Environmental Law Seminar, and Environmental Justice Seminar.

Dean Russell is immediate past chair of the ABA Section of Environment, Energy and Resources and the immediate past chair of the AALS Section of Natural Resources and Energy Law.  She is a newly appointed member of the Board of Dividing the Waters, an organization of judges and lawyers focused on issues of water adjudication in the Western United States. 

In practice, Russell represented potentially responsible parties, government entities, lenders, and other clients on issues arising under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), wetlands designation, site mitigation, and other environmental issues. She served as the Liaison of the ABA Environmental Section to the Association of American Law Schools and Chair of the Strategic Response Committee of the ABA Environmental Section. She was founding Chair of the Memphis Bar Association Environmental Law Section and served as Chair of the Tennessee Bar Association Environmental Section. 

Professor Michelle Bryan Mudd teaches in the law school’s environmental program, including the Land Use Planning and Water Law courses. She is also Director of the Land Use & Natural Resource Clinic, which works on behalf of Montana local governments and is among only a few such clinics nationwide. Prior to teaching in the environmental program, Professor Bryan Mudd taught in the school’s legal writing program and continues to emphasize writing and analytical skills in the clinic and classroom setting. She has been honored to receive the Garlington, Lohn & Robinson Faculty Teaching Award and the Margery Hunter Brown Faculty Merit Award for her professionalism in the classroom, in her research, and in her public service.

Professor Bryan Mudd was drawn to the fields of land use and water law because of her background growing up in ranching and farming communities in the West. Before joining the law school faculty, she was in private practice specializing in land use and water law in both the transactional and litigation contexts. She worked with a variety of clients including local governments, private landowners, non-profits, developers, and affected neighbors and community groups. She brings this diversity of perspective to her work with students and government clients. 

Outside of teaching, Professor Bryan Mudd serves on the board of directors for the Montana Justice Foundation, the non-profit state entity that collects and distributes funds to promote access to legal services for Montana’s underprivileged. She enjoys poetry and photography, as well as hiking, fly fishing, and exploring Montana with her husband John Mudd, her daughter, and their dog Bradley.

Professor Bryan Mudd graduated from The University of Montana School of Law with high honors and served as an editor of the Montana Law Review. Prior to law school she was a policy specialist for the Water Resources Center in Bozeman, Montana.

Raymond Cross

Professor Raymond Cross teaches Federal Indian LawAdvanced Federal Indian Law, American Cultural and Religious Freedoms, Comparative Legal Status & Rights of the Indigenous Peoples of Canada, Australia, New Zealand and United States, and Public Land and Natural Resources Law. He also advises the Public Land & Resources Law Review, and he coaches the National Native American Law Students’ Moot Court team that placed second nationally in 2004. He works extensively with Indian tribes, Indian organizations, and federal agencies on issues of Indian education, tribal self-determination, and cultural and natural resources preservation.

Professor Raymond Cross’ legal career in Indian Country is chronicled in a new book entitled “Coyote Warrior: One Man, Three Tribes and the Trial That Forged A Nation” (Little, Brown Publishing Co. 2004). He began his legal career as a staff attorney with California Indian Legal Services (C.I.L.S.) in its Mendocino County office located in Ukiah, California. He later served from 1975-80 as the Indian Law Support Center Director for Native American Rights Fund (NARF), a public interest law firm located in Boulder, Colorado. During his tenure at NARF he represented the Klamath Indian Tribe in its successful litigation effort to establish its time immemorial reserved water right for the preservation of the tribe’s aboriginal hunting, fishing, gathering, and trapping rights within the environmentally significant Klamath Marsh region of south central Oregon. He also represented the Pasqua Yaqui Tribe, which resides in the Sonora Desert of southern Arizona, in its successful effort to secure Congressional recognition of its aboriginal status as an American Indian tribe entitled to federal protection and federal services.

Professor Williams teaches Introduction to Environmental Law, Wildlife Law and supervises the Public Land and Resources Law Review and is the Co-Director of the Land Use & Natural Resource Clinic. She joined the faculty at the law school after serving as the Deputy Solicitor Parks and Wildlife for the United States Department of the Interior where she oversaw legal issues and litigation for the National Park Service and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. Professor Williams also served as Agency Legal Counsel for the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, as well as policy analyst for the Environmental Quality Council, and clerk to the Honorable James Nelson of the Montana Supreme Court. Professor Williams received her B.A. from the University of Virginia and her J.D. with honors from the University of Montana School of Law.
Adjunct/Affiliated Faculty
Steve Brown   406.523.2558
Matt McKinney 406.457.8475
Jack R. Tuholske 406.243.6653