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Professor Richardson Receives National Excellence in Agricultural Law Award

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA — Jesse Richardson Jr., professor of law and lead land use attorney in the WVU Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Clinic, has received the Excellence in Agricultural Law for Academia from the American Agricultural Law Association (AALA). He was honored during the association’s annual conference on Oct. 26 in Portland, Oregon.

WVU Law Professor Jesse Richardson

The AALA’s Excellence in Agricultural Law Awards recognizes AALA members for outstanding contributions to the legal profession and the agricultural community. These awards may acknowledge members from professional sectors, including private practice, academia, government and non-governmental organizations.

“Jesse strives to make the academic world a bit more exciting for his students and to share his passion for the industry,” said AALA president Jennifer Zwagerman of Drake University Law School. “His work helps inspire the next generation of professionals.”

Graduating magna cum laude from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Richardson earned a bachelor’s degree in agricultural economics in 1984 and a master’s degree in agricultural and applied economics in 1996. He earned a Juris Doctorate from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1987.

His previous positions include serving as a faculty member at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, in general practice for nine years emphasizing environmental and agricultural law, and as a lecturer in the University of Virginia School of Law.

Richardson has been recognized with a University Award for Outreach Excellence as well as the William E. Wine Award for Excellence in Teaching and the University Certificate of Teaching Excellence in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech. He also received the AALA Professional Scholarship award in 1999. He has served on the AALA Board of Directors and was president in 2014-15. He also served on the board of directors for the National Cave and Karst Research Institute and the Universities Council on Water Resources. He presently serves on the Board of the Water Well Trust.

Established in 1980, the American Agricultural Law Association is a national professional association serving as the premier association for agricultural law and policy professionals. Its mission is informing and engaging the law and policy professionals who serve all facets of the agricultural and food communities. For more information, visit


Contact: Maureen Kelly Moseman, American Agricultural Law Association
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