Fellowship: Menapace Fellowship in Urban Land Use Law, Municipal Art Society, New York City (Deadline 1/31/2020)

The Ralph C. Menapace Fellowship in Urban Land Use Law

Applications Due: January 31, 2020

New York City has been both the laboratory and battleground for innovations in land use regulation, including urban environmental controls, zoning, open space, and historic preservation. Legislation drafted or refined through litigation in New York has provided the model for land use laws throughout the country.

The Ralph C. Menapace Fellowship, sponsored by the Municipal Art Society of New York (MAS), gives recent law school graduates an opportunity to acquire first-hand experience in the legislative process, litigation, and advocacy before New York’s regulatory bodies. It provides the intensive learning experience of a judicial clerkship with a greater opportunity for independent, creative work in finding solutions to new and persistent problems in urban life.


The Menapace Fellow will be involved in litigation, legislative work, and the preparation and delivery of testimony in proceedings before state and federal administrative bodies, as well as the City Planning Commission (CPC), Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), Board of Standards & Appeals (BSA), and the City Council. The Fellow will also serve as in-house counsel, assisting in corporate and non-profit law matters for MAS.

The Fellow’s term, to commence in September 2020, will run for a mandatory two-year period. The Fellowship is a salaried position, commensurate with a judicial clerkship, and offers standard MAS benefits. The Fellow will work under the supervision of the Vice President for Policy and Programs in the MAS office at 488 Madison Avenue in Manhattan. Interested candidates should email a cover letter indicating the basis of their interest, resume, legal writing sample (no longer than ten pages), and transcript by January 31, 2020 to jobs@mas.org. Interviews will be conducted the week of March 23, 2020.


The Menapace Fellow will receive further guidance from MAS’s General Counsel and Law Committee, which comprises distinguished attorneys with expertise in land use and zoning, real estate, non-profit, environmental, and municipal law fields. The current Law Committee is chaired by Earl Weiner, General Counsel, MAS and Senior Counsel, Sullivan & Cromwell, LLP. Committee members include Frank Chaney, Of Counsel, Rosenberg & Estis, P.C.; Katrina Kuh, Professor of Law, Pace Law School; Kimberly Ong*, Senior Attorney, National Resources Defense Council; Robert Pigott, Vice President and General Counsel, Phipps Houses; Paul Proulx, Partner, Carter, Ledyard & Milburn LLP; David Schnakenberg*, Of Counsel, GoldmanHarris LLC. The Law Committee meets six times per year, during which the Menapace Fellow provides substantive updates, and strategy for legal advocacy is discussed.

* Former Menapace Fellow


MAS is a civic organization that works to educate and inspire New Yorkers to engage in the betterment of our city. As a non-profit advocacy organization, MAS mobilizes diverse allies to focus on issues that affect our city from sidewalk to skyline. MAS protects New York’s legacy spaces, encourages thoughtful planning and urban design, and fosters complete neighborhoods across the five boroughs devoted to improving the physical environment of New York City.

Founded in 1893, our advocacy efforts have led to the creation of the nation’s first zoning ordinance, early air and noise quality controls, the first billboard legislation, New York’s first tree-planting program, and the establishment of New York City’s Planning Commission, Public Design Commission, and Landmarks Preservation Commission. MAS played a central role in the legal action that saved Grand Central Terminal and the resulting United States Supreme Court decision affirming New York City’s Landmarks Law. MAS also was a key player in the successful court battles over Saint Bartholomew’s Church and Columbus Circle – the latter would have resulted in the largest building ever built in midtown Manhattan at the time.

Recent MAS advocacy efforts have focused on closing zoning loopholes which allow for excessive out-of-context development, exposing shortcomings in the City Environmental Quality Review (CEQR) process, and protecting access to sunlight in the public realm.


The 2020-2022 Menapace Fellow will be engaged in policy development and legal advocacy for current urban land use issues confronting New York City, assisting with ongoing litigation concerning gerrymandered zoning lots, parkland alienation, and Large-Scale Developments.

Since October 2018, MAS has been involved in sequential Article 78 proceedings challenging the illegal, gerrymandered zoning lot at 200 Amsterdam Avenue, upon which a 55-story tower is being constructed. MAS secured a major legal victory in early 2019 when the New York County Supreme Court determined that the BSA acted unreasonably in affirming the Department of Buildings’ decision to issue building permits for the gerrymandered zoning lot. The Menapace Fellow has worked alongside a team of attorneys to bring this lawsuit, assisting with sophisticated legal research and writing, and actively participating in the Article 78 proceeding. Unfortunately, the BSA recently reaffirmed their previous decision upon the Court’s remand, hence a second Article 78 proceeding was filed by MAS in July 2019 to challenge the subsequent BSA resolution.

Additionally, MAS is currently a Petitioner in a lawsuit involving Marx Brothers Playground, a public park and jointly operated playground (JOP) which was alienated on behalf of a private developer who is seeking to build a 700-ft residential tower in one of the most park-starved neighborhoods of the city. While the New York County Supreme Court correctly determined that Marx Brothers Playground and the other 267 JOPs in New York City are parks protected by the New York State Public Trust Doctrine, MAS and its partners are currently appealing this decision which failed to recognize the City’s violations of the SEQRA and CEQR processes. The Menapace Fellow is working with outside counsel to research and draft the appellate brief; the 2020-2022 Fellow will likely have the opportunity to similarly engage in appellate advocacy.

MAS also served as Amicus Curiae in a recent lawsuit brought by the City Council and the Manhattan Borough President to challenge the City Planning Commission’s approval of a proposed mega-development project in the Two Bridges neighborhood of Manhattan without Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP) review. The Court’s August 2019 decision marked another victory for MAS: the project has been enjoined until ULURP is completed.


The Fellowship is named in honor of Ralph C. Menapace, Jr., a distinguished lawyer, active civic leader, and MAS President and General Counsel who died in 1984. Mr. Menapace, a graduate of Yale Law School and a partner in the firm of Cahill Gordon & Reindel, championed the preservation of landmarks, the protection and enhancement of parks, and the creation of more sensitive zoning tools to guide new development. He was an invaluable resource for community groups, government agencies, and civic organizations.

Fellowship: Univ. of Arizona Law School, Natural Resource Use & Management Clinic (Tucson, AZ) (Deadline: Dec. 9, 2019)

Opportunity for recent graduates with an interest in natural resource use and management, western resource issues (including water rights and energy topics), and an interest in an academic fellowship.” “Fellow to assist with the University of Arizona’s Natural Resource Use & Management Clinic, which focuses on collaborative conservation projects focused on western lands and resources issues. Ideally, the fellow will be able to start by the beginning of the spring semester in mid-January in sunny Tucson, AZ.”

The posting is available here:


Fellowships/Internship: Earthrights International (Washington, DC)

From an email announcement (both opportunities are in Washington, DC):
EarthRights International is currently looking to hire post-graduate legal fellows (two-years, paid) and summer legal interns. Please consider forwarding to any interested students.
Bertha Justice Legal Fellow  – This two-year paid fellowship fellowship is geared towards recent U.S. law school graduates and LLM degree holders hoping to practice in the United States. Deadline for submissions is December 15, 2019.
Legal Intern (Summer, 2020) – EarthRights legal interns will have the opportunity to participate in various projects associated with our cases, including legal research and writing and assistance in all phases of litigation, as well as other legal work including development of new cases, monitoring and exploring developments in international human rights and environmental law, researching and utilizing other mechanisms of corporate accountability.  Deadline for submissions is January 15, 2019.
Interested candidates should visit the EarthRights International careers page for more information about these opportunities.
EarthRights International is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate in its hiring practices, and actively encourages people of color, women, people with disabilities, and LGBTQI people to apply.
For more information on the work of EarthRights International visit www.earthrights.org

Position: Trial Attorney, US Dept. of Justice, Environment Division, Wildlife and Marine Resources Section, Washington, DC (Deadline: 10/4/2019)

2 open position for experienced attorneys.


Here’s a write-up about the Wildlife Section:

“WMRS primarily handles civil defensive litigation under federal wildlife laws and laws concerning the protection of marine fish and mammals, including the Endangered Species Act, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The Section represents a broad range of federal regulatory and resource management agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Section’s cases involve challenges to rulemakings about which species should be listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act, agency decisions about the way in which protected species are considered when federal agencies carry out their missions, and other litigation related to the balance between species protection and resource development in federal agency decision-making. The work of the Section is varied and often affords attorneys the opportunity to be involved in some of the most complex and important cases currently arising in this area of the law. This is not a criminal prosecution position.

WMRS seeks to hire and cultivate talented trial attorneys and provides its lawyers with regular and meaningful court experience in a variety of jurisdictions on a broad range of issues. Attorneys in the Section are assigned a docket of multiple cases and are given first-chair responsibility for all aspects of their cases including drafting procedural and dispositive motions, handling written and oral discovery when needed, conducting settlement negotiations, defending emergency motions, including examination of witnesses when necessary, and presenting oral argument. Attorneys in the Section also counsel client agencies on their compliance with statutes under the Section’s jurisdiction. The cases handled by WMRS require attorneys to achieve intellectual command of complicated facts, scientific principles, and legal issues, often rapidly.”

Modified 9/18 – 2019-2020 Searches for Open Environmental Law Professor Positions

This year, there seem to be, again, a number of searches for law faculty positions that focus on or include environmental/energy/natural resource law as a desired specialty or interest area.  Mostly, these are searches that have been publicized through notices on various listservs that I subscribe to. (It seems that over the past few years, there has been more hiring for this field than in years prior.)  For those with such career goals, here are some of the institutions:

  1. Penn State Law in University Park (University Park, PA):  ” Penn State Law will be making two interdisciplinary hires. The first is a joint hire with the Penn State Institutes of Energy and the Environment for a position in energy and/or environmental law.”  ” Penn State Law will be attending the AALS faculty recruitment conference, and entry level candidates are strongly encouraged to participate in the AALS Faculty Appointments Register. Lateral candidates should submit a current CV, four letters of reference, teaching evaluations, and a draft work-in-progress to Appointments@pennstatelaw.psu.edu. Specific inquiries should be addressed to the chair of the Appointments Committee, Professor Sam Thompson, at sct13@psu.edu.”
  2. Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law (Indianapolis, IN): “seeks a visiting faculty member to hold the Robert H. McKinney Family Chair in Environmental Law for the Spring 2020 semester with the possibility of continuing through Fall 2020. The law school invites applicants with the type of academic profile suitable for a titled position.” “Interested candidates should submit a CV and cover letter to Vice Dean Mike Pitts at mjpitts@iupui.edu. Applications
    will be reviewed on a rolling basis with September 15 as the deadline for all applications.”
  3. University of Florida Levin College of Law (Gainesville, FL): “In reviewing applications, the Appointments Committee will consider long-term teaching needs in large enrollment classes, environmental law, health law, tax, and law and technology.”  “For further information, applicants may contact Professors Daniel Sokol and Michael Wolf at P.O. Box 117620, Gainesville, FL 32611 or email appointments@law.ufl.edu.”
  4. Florida International University College of Law (Miami, FL):  ” two tenured or tenure-track Assistant, Associate, or full Professor of Law positions to begin in the 2020-21 academic year. Our primary curricular interests are Cyber Law (focusing on cybercrime/forensics, interconnected cities, infrastructure security, and general
    cybersecurity training and education), Environmental Law, Wills & Trusts, and Torts. The Cyber Law position may be a joint appointment with another FIU School or College.” “For any questions related to the position, please contact Appointments Committee co-chairs Jan Osei-Tutu (joseitut@fiu.edu) or Scott Norberg (norberg@fiu.edu). To receive full consideration, applications and required materials should be received by September 30.”
  5. The University of Baltimore School of Law (Baltimore, MD):  ” We will consider applicants with a wide range of teaching interests, including, but not limited to, all First Year Subjects, as well as Family Law, Commercial Law, and Environmental Law.”  “Contact (e-mail preferred): Professor David Jaros, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, University of Baltimore School of Law, 1420 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-5779, djaros@ubalt.edu.”
  6. University of California at Davis School of Law (Davis, CA): “invites applications for a Water Justice Clinical Lecturer, who will act as the director of the Aoki Water Justice Clinic, by October 20, 2019 and/or until the position is filled.” “All candidates must apply through the UC Recruit system at the following link: https://recruit.ucdavis.edu/JPF03045. For full consideration, applicants should apply by October 20, 2019, although we recommend that you submit your materials as soon as possible.”
  7. The University of Tulsa College of Law (Tulsa, OK):  “The areas of interest may include, but are not necessarily limited to, civil procedure, property, business law, transactional law, Indian law, energy and natural resource law, contracts, and other first year and required courses.” “Please submit letters of interest and résumés to Prof. Robert Spoo, Chair, Appointments Committee, University of Tulsa College of Law, 3120 E. 4th Place, Tulsa, OK 74104, or by email to robert-spoo@utulsa.edu.”
  8. The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law: “seeks entry-level or junior lateral candidates for at least one tenure-track position. Our primary areas of need are Dispute Resolution, Business Law, and Race and Law. Secondary areas of need include Antitrust, Banking/Insurance, Civil Procedure/Complex Litigation, Commercial Law, Evidence, Immigration, Intellectual Property/Law and Technology, Natural Resources/Energy Law, Poverty/Social Welfare Law, Property/Real Estate, and Wills & Trusts.” “Candidates should send a cover letter and C.V. to Daniel Tokaji, Associate Dean for Faculty, tokaji.1@osu.edu, stating that they are applying for this position.”
  9. Added – The University of Denver Sturm College of Law:  “we anticipate particular interests in administrative law, alternative dispute resolution, environmental and natural resources law (including energy law), evidence, international law, professional responsibility, property, tax, and veterans advocacy.”  ” Interested persons should send a cover letter, resume (including at least three references), teaching statement, and research agenda to Professor José Roberto (Beto) Juárez Jr., Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee (bjuarez@law.du.edu).”
  10. Added – Texas Tech University School of Law:  ” open faculty position (Requisition 1877BR). Anticipated curricular needs include Water Law, Property, and Environmental Law. “successful candidate will also serve as the Director for the Law School’s Center for Water Law and Policy. If tenured, the successful candidate may also be considered to fill the position of the George W. McCleskey Professor of Water Law.” “In addition to serving as the Center’s Director, responsibilities would include teaching Water Law and related courses such as Property and Environmental Law. ” “Please submit your cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references electronically to the attention of Professor Brian D. Shannon, Chair, Personnel Committee, at the Texas.”
  11. Added – University of Houston Law Center:  “The University of Houston Law Center invites applications for a non-tenure track Instructional Associate Professor of Law position; with Environmental Law emphasis for the academic year 2020-2021.” “This non-tenure track appointment may have a one-year probationary contract period with no presumption of renewal. However, based upon continued positive evaluations of the appointee, or sufficiently high experience and expertise when entering into the position, the position may provide or lead to a presumptively renewable multiyear contract. The initial salary range for this position is expected to be $90,000 to $100,000 for a nine-month academic year, but the precise salary will be negotiated based on the candidate’s experience and on compensation paid or offered to professors in comparable positions at comparable law schools.” ” The successful candidate will have the opportunity to teach environmental law courses, but experience or willingness to teach elsewhere in the Law Center curriculum, including 1L courses, will be a helpful credential depending on the course preferences.” “To receive fullest consideration, your online application must be received by September 10, 2019. Candidates can direct inquiries to Professor Robert Ragazzo, RRagazzo@central.uh.edu Please reference and review the University of Houston’s NTT Faculty Policy, available at this link: http://www.uh.edu/provost/faculty/current/non-tenure-track. “

And for those really serious about and already committed to entering the legal academy as environmental law professors, Pace Law School (White Plains, NY) hosts an annual workshop for aspiring environmental law professors. This year’s workshop is coming up on September 13, 2019.  Here’s the registration link:  https://law.pace.edu/future-environmental-law-professors​​