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 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.
Her current research interests include the relationship between land and water use, the balancing of environmental and land use rights, and the evolution of eminent domain law.
SELECTED PUBLIC SERVICE
President, Montana Justice Foundation (Board Member since 2005)
Member, Montana Small Business Compliance Assistance Advisory Council (Gubernatorial Appointment in 2010)
Technical Advisory Panel Member for the Montana Department of Transportation online website – Montana Transportation and Land Use Resources for Growing Communities (2008-2010)
Hitching Our Wagon to a Dim Star: Why "Public Interest" Review Cannot Protect the Public Trust in Western Water Law, __ Stanford Env. L. J. __ (forthcoming Winter 2012).
Montana v. Wyoming: An Opportunity to Right the Course for Coalbed Methane Development and Prior Appropriation (solicited piece in 5 Golden Gate U. Envtl. L.J. 297 (2012)).
A “Constant and Difficult Task”: Making Local Land Use Decisions in States with A Constitutional Right to a Healthful Environment, Ecology Law Quaterly (Vol. 38:1, 2011).
The Role of Fish and Wildlife Evidence in Local Land Use Regulation, 30 Pub. Land & Res. L. Rev. 107 (2009) (with students DarAnne Dunning and Melissa Hayes).
Montana Chapter, American Bar Association's Law and Procedure of Eminent Domain in the 50 States, published and maintained online at www.abanet.org/litigation/committees/condemnation/compendium.html (2007-present).
Was the Big Sky Really Falling? Examining Montana’s Response to Kelo v. City of New London, 69 Mont. L. Rev. 79 (Winter 2008).
Student Author, Baldridge v. Board of Trustees: A Case for Reform of Montana's Tenured Teacher Dismissal Process, 61 Mont. L. Rev. 251 (2000).
Wading into Montana Water Rights (Mont. Water Resources Ctr. & Mont. Envtl. Quality Council 1997) (with Gerald Westesen).
A Guide to Montana Water Quality Regulation (Mont. Water Resources Ctr. & Mont. Envtl. Quality Council 1997) (with Michael Kakuk).
"A Drop in the Bucket" guest column series, published in Montana newspapers statewide, through the Montana Water Resources Center (1995-1997).
Panelist, AALS Annual Meeting (2011), Panelist, “New Voices in Environmental Law,” Environmental and Natural Resources Sections, presenting on the topic of constitutional rights to a healthful environment.
Lecturer, “The Laws that Govern Land, Water, Rocks and Trees,” and Panelist, “A Water Primer: Pollution, Rights, Species and Utilities,” Society of Environmental Journalists Conference (2010).
Panelist, The Montana Constitution’s Clean & Healthful Environment Provisions, The Honorable James R. Browning Symposium on the Montana Constitution (2010).
Panelist, Land Use & Water: Focusing on Exempt Wells, Montana Watershed Symposium (2010).
Poster Presentation, Crossing the Bridge: How Students Move From Novice to Professional By Leading Community Workshops, Association of American Law Schools (AALS) national Conference on Clinical Legal Education (2010).
Presenter, Preparing Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, Montana Local Government Workshop Series (2009-2010).
Presenter, Basics of Montana Water Law, Water Policy Interim Committee of the Montana Legislature (2009).Moderator, Stream Access Panel, The Honorable James R. Browning Symposium on Rural Law (2009).
Presenter, Preparing Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, Montana Local Government Workshop Series (2009).
Presenter, Using Model Legislation to Integrate Land Use and Water Use Planning at the Community Level, Water Policy Interim Committee of the Montana Legislature (2008).
Lecturer, How to Write a Winning Brief, The University of Montana School of Law Winter CLE Series (2007 and 2008).
Lecturer, An Immodest Proposal: Tying Land Use and Water Use Planning, Annual New West Conference on Real Estate and Development in the Northern Rockies (2007).
Lecturer, Community Planning from a Legal Perspective, Annual New West Conference on Real Estate and Development in the Northern Rockies (2006).