Meet the Professors

Michelle Bryan

Michelle Bryan

Professor Michelle Bryan teaches in the law school's Natural Resources & Environmental Law Program. Growing up in farming, ranching, and energy development communities in the West, Professor Bryan was drawn to the fields of natural resources and environmental law. Prior to joining the law faculty, she worked in private practice representing 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 scholarship and teaching. 

Read more

Matthew Fletcher

Matthew Fletcher

Matthew L. M. Fletcher is Professor of Law at Michigan State University College of Law and director of the Indigenous Law and Policy Center. He sits as the Chief Justice of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians Supreme Court and also sits as an appellate judge for the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians, the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians, the Hoopa Valley Tribe, the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of Potawatomi Indians, and the Santee Sioux Tribe of Nebraska. He is a member of the Grand Traverse Band, located in Peshawbestown, Michigan.

Read more

Kathryn (Kate) E. Fort

Kate Fort

Kathryn (Kate) E. Fort is the director of the Indian Law Clinic at the Michigan State University College of Law. In 2015, she started the Indian Child Welfare Act Appellate Project, which assists tribes in ICWA cases across the country. She is also the author of American Indian Children and the Law, published by Carolina Academic Press. In her role with the Center she teaches the Indian Law Clinic class and traditional classes in federal Indian law, researches and writes on behalf of Center clients, and manages administrative aspects of the Center. Ms. Fort has written articles on laches and land claims and has researched and written extensively on the Indian Child Welfare Act. Her publications include articles in the Harvard Public Health Review, George Mason Law ReviewSaint Louis University Law Journal, and American Indian Law Review. She co-edited Facing the Future: The Indian Child Welfare Act at 30 with Wenona T. Singel and Matthew L.M. Fletcher (Michigan State University Press 2009). She co-edits the popular and influential Indian law blog, TurtleTalk with Matthew Fletcher. Ms. Fort graduated magna cum laude in from Michigan State University College of Law with the Certificate in Indigenous Law, and is licensed to practice law in Michigan. She received her B.A. in History with honors from Hollins University in Roanoke, Virginia.

Read more

Steven Andrew Light
Steve Light is Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of Political Science and Public Administration at the University of North Dakota. With frequent collaborator and IMGL affiliate Kathryn R.L. Rand (Dean and Floyd B. Sperry Professor of Law), he is co-founder and co-director of the Institute for the Study of Tribal Gaming Law & Policy, the first university-affiliated institute dedicated to advancing research and understanding of Indian gaming. He has published some forty articles, chapters, and essays as well as three books on Indian gaming, including INDIAN GAMING LAW AND POLICY (2d ed. 2014), INDIAN GAMING LAW: CASES AND MATERIALS (2008), and INDIAN GAMING AND TRIBAL SOVEREIGNTY: THE CASINO COMPROMISE (2005), which was featured on C-SPAN2’s BOOK TV. Light has testified on Indian gaming regulation and oversight before the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, and serves on the Editorial Board of the Gaming Law Review & Economics. He has spoken on Indian gaming at universities and industry events throughout the world, and is a frequent commentator in such media outlets as the Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, New York Times and Indian Country Today.

Monte Mills

Monte Mills

Monte Mills is an associate professor and co-director of the Margery Hunter Brown Indian Law Clinic at the Alexander Blewett III School of Law at the University of Montana. He teaches a variety of Indian law courses and works with clinical students on a range of legal matters in the Indian Law Clinic. Prior to joining the faculty at the Alexander Blewett III School of Law at the University of Montana, Monte was the Director of the Legal Department for the Southern Ute Indian Tribe in Colorado, an in-house counsel department that he helped organize and implement in 2005 following completion of a unique two-year in-house attorney training program. As Director of the Tribe's Legal Department, Monte represented and counseled the Tribe on a broad array of issues, including litigation in tribal, state and federal courts, legislative matters before the Colorado General Assembly and the United States Congress, and internal tribal matters such as contracting, code-drafting, and gaming issues.

Read more

Kathryn R. L. Rand

Kathryn Rand

Kathryn R. L. Rand (J.D. University of Michigan, B.A. University of North Dakota) is Floyd B. Sperry Professor of Law and co-director of the Institute for the Study of Tribal Gaming Law and Policy at the University of North Dakota. She served as Dean of the UND School of Law from 2009 to 2018, the first woman to hold the position. Rand is widely recognized as among the nation’s leading experts on Indian gaming, federal Indian law, and tribal-state-federal intergovernmental relations. She has published more than 50 articles and co-authored three books on tribal gaming, including Indian Gaming Law: Cases and Materials (2008, 2d ed. 2019), Indian Gaming Law and Policy (2006, 2d ed. 2014), and Indian Gaming and Tribal Sovereignty: The Casino Compromise (2005). She has twice testified on Indian gaming regulation and oversight before the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs in Washington, D.C., as well as before the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation. Her first book was featured on C-SPAN’s Book TV. She is a frequent commentator in the national media, including the New York Times and the Boston Globe, and has delivered invited lectures at Boston College, the University of Manitoba, the University of Helsinki, the University of Macau, and numerous law schools. Rand also has presented and published on academic leadership and diversity and inclusion in legal education. She is an elected member of the American Law Institute and was awarded UND’s highest award for faculty excellence in teaching, research, and service.

Read more

Kekek Jason Stark

Kekek Jason Stark

Kekek Jason Stark is a Turtle Mountain Ojibwe and member of the Bizhiw (Lynx) Clan. He is a former president of the Minnesota American Indian Bar Association. He is a Bush Foundation Leadership Fellow and alum of Hamline University School of Law. Kekek served as the Attorney General for the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians. As the Attorney General, Kekek served as the chief legal representative and advisor to the Lac Courte Oreilles Tribal Governing Board and provided technical supervision of the Office of the Attorney General on a wide range of issues including: treaty rights, natural and cultural resources, land use, child welfare, child support, real property, procurement, preference, tort, contract, constitutional, gaming, environmental, intellectual property, employment law and litigation.  Prior to assuming his role with the Lac Courte Oreilles Tribe, Kekek served as an Attorney / Policy Analyst for the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission. His work at the Commission involved the preservation, implementation and utilization of treaty reserved rights for 11 Ojibwe bands encompassing Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. Kekek has served as an adjunct instructor for the Mitchell Hamline School of Law, the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe Community College, the University of Wisconsin – Superior, and the University of Minnesota – Duluth. Kekek has served as board member of the Waadookodaading Ojibwe Language Institute, the Bad River Head Start Policy Council, the Anoka-Hennepin Indian Education Committee, and Nawayee Center School.