Press Release

Donations of $120,000 Create the RMMLF’s New Frances Hartogh Diversity Outreach Scholarship Fund


The Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation (the Foundation) is proud to announce that Rob Risley, Senior Counsel at Freeport-McMoRan, has made donations to the Foundation’s scholarship program of $40,000 last year and $20,000 this year. The Freeport-McMoRan Foundation is generously matching these gifts through its Employee Matching Gifts program for total funding of $120,000.


Although most people know the Foundation for its Annual Institutes and its other high-quality conferences, the Foundation also has an Outreach Program, which provides almost $350,000 annually to further legal education in oil and gas, mining, energy, public lands, water, environmental, and related international law. This funding includes scholarships to law students interested in these areas of law, attendance at Foundation educational programs, networking grants to introduce students to practitioners and professionals, and grants to professors to fund research and scholarship.


The Foundation funds most of the Outreach Program from operations, but given current market conditions, it will need to rely on donations like those from Rob and the Freeport Foundation to maintain current funding levels.


Rob’s contribution will fund the new Frances Hartogh Diversity Outreach Scholarship Program. Under this Program, the Foundation will award scholarships each year to mineral law students who meet certain eligibility criteria, including the the potential to contribute to the mineral law community and potential to increase diversity in the practice of mineral law.


Rob said, “The Foundation has greatly enhanced my career and given me the opportunity to work closely with some amazing people. The Foundation doesn’t take policy positions, but it is the best and most effective place to educate lawyers and others who will make legal and policy decisions about mineral and other natural resources. The Foundation has an extremely important philanthropic function that is not well funded. I wanted to fund a new scholarship that recognizes the importance of both diversity and education in mineral law practice. Having worked with our Scholarships Committee for several years, I have the utmost confidence that the Committee will administer my gift with integrity and diligence.”


Rob made his gift in the form of appreciated stock, which he said “can be an incredible way to maximize a gift while getting great tax savings.” Rob also noted how thankful he was for the Freeport Foundation’s extremely generous matching program for employees. The Foundation will apply the Freeport matching gift to fund student scholarships.


About Frances Hartogh

We’ve named the newly funded scholarship program to recognize Frances Hartogh, the Foundation’s Associate Director and Director of Outreach. Frances graduated from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 1982, and began her legal practice with Colorado Interstate Gas, in Colorado Springs, Colorado. She then became the Senior Counsel at Gold Fields Mining in Lakewood, Colorado. She also served as an Assistant Attorney General with the Colorado Attorney General’s office before coming to work for the Foundation in 2009. Frances has been instrumental in the expansion of the Outreach Program and a leader in diversity outreach. Frances intends to retire in June, and to continue her 37 years of involvement with the Foundation into retirement.

University of Calgary Faculty of Law Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Natural Resources, Energy and Environmental Law


If you’re looking to expand your practice in natural resources, energy or environmental law, but don’t have a lot of time for continuing education, consider UCalgary Law’s post-baccalaureate certificate in natural resources, energy and environmental law. Four courses (completed within three years) will allow you to enhance your knowledge and provide more value for your firm.


Press Release

Election of Officers, Members-at-Large of the Board, Honorary Trustees, and Trustees-at-Large


July 18, 2018 - The Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation is pleased to announce the election by the Trustees Council of the following slate of Officers, Members-at-Large of the Board of Directors, Honorary Trustees, and Trustees-at-Large for 2018-2019.


OFFICERS 2018-2019

President            William B. Prince, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, Salt Lake City, UT

Vice President   Rebecca W. Watson, Welborn Sullivan Meck & Tooley, P.C., Denver, CO

Secretary             Joel O. Benson, David Graham & Stubbs LLP, Denver, CO

Treasurer            Rachael E. Salcido, University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law, Sacramento, CA



Khaled Abdel Barr, Lawson Lundell LLP, Vancouver, BC

Monika U. Ehrman, University of Oklahoma College of Law, Norman, OK

Ann E. Lane, WPX Energy, Inc., Denver, CO

Hadassah M. Reimer, Holland & Hart LLP, Jackson, WY

Matthew Salzman, Stinson Leonard Street LLP, Kansas City, MO

Neil G. Westesen, Crowley Fleck PLLP, Bozeman, MT



Steven P. Ruffatto, Crowley Fleck PLLP, Billings, MT

Mary Viviano, Golden, CO



Juan Martin Allende, Allende & Brea, Buenos Aires, Argentina

John W. Andrews, Snell & Wilmer, L.L.P., Salt Lake City, UT

Ana Elizabeth Bastida, Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy, University of Dundee, Dundee, Scotland

Susan Miller Bisong, Modrall Sperling, Albuquerque, NM

Robin Kundis Craig, University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law, Salt Lake City, UT

Michel E. Curry, Henry Resources LLC, Midland, TX

Timothy C. Dowd, Elias, Books, Brown & Nelson, Oklahoma City, OK

Pedro Freitas, Veirano Advogados, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Michael A. Gheleta, Somach Simmons & Dunn, Boulder, CO

Ana M. Gutierrez, Hogan Lovells US LLP, Denver, CO

David B. Hatch, Holland & Hart LLP, Salt Lake City, UT

Philip C. Lowe, Department of the Interior, Office of the Solicitor, Lakewood, CO

M. Benjamin Machlis, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, Salt Lake City, UT

Eric L. Martin, Stoel Rives LLP, Portland, OR

Carolyn L. McIntosh, Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLP, Denver, CO

Margaret L. Meister, Modrall Sperling, Albuquerque, NM

Wells S. Parker, Dorsey & Whitney LLP, Salt Lake City, UT

Scott Regan, Whiting Oil and Gas Corporation, Denver, CO

Tara K. Righetti, University of Wyoming College of Law, Laramie, WY

Heidi K. Ruckriegle, WilmerHale, Denver, CO

Marcelle F. Shoop, National Audubon Society, Salt Lake City, UT

Juan Sonoda, Beretta Godoy, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Sarah Sorum, Welborn Sullivan Meck & Tooley, P.C., Denver, CO

Robert L. Theriot, Liskow & Lewis, Houston, TX

Stevia M. Walther, Denver, CO


Press Release



July 18, 2018 - The Trustees of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation are pleased to announce that the following new Constituent Law School has been admitted to the Trustees Council:



The Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation is a collaborative educational non-profit organization dedicated to the scholarly and practical study of the law and regulations relating to mining, oil and gas, water, public lands, energy, environmental protection, and other related areas.  The Foundation’s Constituent Organizations promote these educational objectives.


The Trustees Council now includes 65 Constituent Organizations: 33 Law Schools, 13 bar associations, and 19 mining and oil and gas associations.

Press Release

2018 Recipients of the Clyde O. Martz Teaching Award


July 18, 2018 - The Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation announces the 2018 Recipients of the CLYDE O. MARTZ TEACHING AWARD:

JOHN C. PECK, of the University of Kansas School of Law


NIGEL D. BANKES of the University of Calgary Faculty of Law


A primary mission of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation is to promote the teaching of the law of mining, oil and gas, water, public lands, energy, environmental protection, international, and other related areas of natural resources law. The greatest source of encouragement of knowledge of the law of natural resources development is through inspiration instilled by professors and other teachers of natural resources law.


Clyde O. Martz Teaching Award

Clyde O. Martz, the eighth president of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, was a teacher of natural resources law whose casebook pioneered the teaching of the law of natural resources development as a whole, and who made many other contributions to the growth and stature of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation and the study of the law of natural resources development, including the editing of the first edition of the American Law of Mining. In 1993 the Trustees of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation established the Clyde O. Martz Teaching Award to honor those who have performed meritorious teaching in natural resources law or development to students either in a classroom setting or at courses sponsored by the Foundation or other not-for-profit organizations. Excellence in teaching performance is the primary criterion for the award, and consideration is given to the fostering of a broad understanding of the law, mentoring of students, and innovative style.


The Trustees of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation are pleased to announce that the 2018 recipients of the Clyde O. Martz Teaching Award are John C. Peck and Nigel Bankes.


John C. Peck

John C. Peck is the Connell Teaching Professor of Law at the University of Kansas School of Law. John is widely recognized as a dedicated teacher and one of the leading authorities on water law in the United States. John’s teaching combines immense expertise with humility and a keen interest in learning from his students. John is a recipient of the Moreau Award that recognizes teachers who are exceptionally dedicated to supporting their students, the Immel Award for Teaching Excellence, and the coveted campus-wide W. T. Kemper Fellowship for Teaching Excellence. Throughout his career, John has educated Kansas legislators and governors, and countless Kansas practitioners, on water law, and has been the principal author of numerous statutory changes in Kansas water law since the 1970s. Also significant, he has educated several generations of Kansas judges on water law, on both the overall statutory and common-law structure and the finer points. John has twice served as the Water Section Chair for Annual Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Institutes, represented the University of Kansas as a Constituent Law School Trustee for the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation for 11 years, and since 1978, has diligently served as the Kansas Reporter for the Foundation’s Water Law Newsletter. John has taught and practiced water law with a combination of unexcelled expertise, practice experience, and good humor.


Nigel D. Bankes

Nigel D. Bankes is the Chair of Natural Resources Law and Professor at the University of Calgary Faculty of Law. For more than three decades, Nigel has taught a broad range of courses in natural resources law, including oil and gas law, natural resources law, administrative process, aboriginal law, and international energy and environmental agreements. He is extremely well-regarded for his teaching, having twice received the Harold Tidswell Teaching Excellence Award in 2008 and 2013. He has supervised and mentored more than 40 graduate students who have completed theses in natural resources law and nine LL.M students that have completed major research papers. He has also devoted a significant amount of his time and energy to educate the legal community, as a regular presenter at the Canadian Energy Law Foundation annual conferences and short courses on energy and oil and gas law, as an editor and member of the Editorial Board of several journals, including the Journal of Energy and Natural Resources Law, the Yearbook of Polar Law, and the Journal of World Energy Law and Business. He was the Canadian Oil and Gas Law Reporter for the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Mineral Law Newsletter for five years and presented papers at both Annual and Special Institutes. Nigel has excelled in teaching and legal scholarship and has been a dedicated educator of the legal community.




2018 National Mining Hall of Fame inductees


The National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum (NMHFM) announced today the 2018 National Mining Hall of Fame inductees. This year’s inductees, selected by the National Mining Hall of Fame’s Board of Governors, represent exploration, extraction, management, education, and research and development in the U.S. mining industry. Their contributions have had significant and lasting impacts on the mineral and mining industry; these individuals were selected for being mavericks, thought leaders, researchers, educators, mentors, wealth builders, and philanthropists.


Professor John M. Guilbert, Dr. Leo J. Miller, Robert E. (Bob) Murray, and Douglas (Doug) B. Silver will join 240 other mining industry luminaries when formally inducted into the National Mining Hall of Fame on September 29th, 2018. Additionally, the Prazen Living Legend of Mining Award will be presented to the Freeport-McMoRan Foundation. The 31st Annual Induction Banquet and Ceremony will be held at the Ritz-Carlton in Denver, CO.