Jonathan Lovvorn appointed policy director of the HLS Animal Law and Policy Program

Jonathan LovvornOn Sept. 5, Harvard Law School Lecturer Jonathan Lovvorn was named the first policy director for the school’s Animal Law & Policy Program. Lovvorn, who previously taught Wildlife Law in both the Fall 2015 and Fall 2016 terms, will continue as a lecturer, teaching a new course this fall on Farmed Animal Law & Policy.

Lovvorn will develop and oversee the Animal Law & Policy Program’s policy work, including collaborating with faculty, staff, fellows and students to expand existing policy projects into longer-term initiatives, launching new policy initiatives, and helping advance policy research and scholarship within the Animal Law & Policy Program.

Kristen Stilt, professor of law and faculty director of the Animal Law & Policy Program, said: “As our new policy director, Jon will focus on the intersectional aspects of animal welfare, human health, food safety, workers’ rights, human rights, climate change and the environment. Jon’s scholarship and legal work reflect an inclusive and holistic view of animal law that is an ideal fit with the Animal Law and Policy Program’s efforts to promote a deeper understanding of how animal welfare is inextricably tied to other pressing public interest issues.”

Mr. Lovvorn has authored several articles concerning animal law and its relationship to other social movements, including “Climate Change Beyond Environmentalism,” published in the Georgetown Environmental Law Review. The article focuses on the intersectional threats of climate change to animals, people, and the environment. He also has taught Animal Law and Wildlife Law at several other law schools, including Yale, New York University, Georgetown and George Washington University.

For the past several years, Mr. Lovvorn has been serving as senior vice president and chief counsel for the Humane Society of the United States, where he founded and managed the nation’s largest animal protection litigation program. In that capacity he successfully argued dozens of cases on behalf of both animals and the environment, authored or co-authored hundreds of state and federal animal protection reform laws, and served as the primary legal strategist for most of the major animal protection ballot measures enacted over the last 15 years.

Said Chris Green, executive director of the Animal Law & Policy Program, “Jon’s extensive experience in the creation and enforcement of animal protection laws will enlarge Harvard Law School’s influence in public discourse concerning industrial agriculture, the use of exotic animals in public displays and circuses, wildlife trafficking and poaching, and other important animal law and policy debates. I look forward to working with Jon to expand our public policy footprint–an important milestone in the ongoing development and success of the Animal Law & Policy Program.”

“I am honored to join Professor Stilt, Chris Green, and a distinguished team of fellows as they work to expand the nation’s leading academic program in Animal Law & Policy,” Lovvorn said. “Working in collaboration with other HLS programs and clinics, I hope to build synergistic policy initiatives that transcend traditional public interest labels and harness the unmatched intellectual resources that Harvard Law School has to offer.”

Mr. Lovvorn holds a J.D. from University of California Hastings College of the Law and an LL.M. in Environmental Law from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College.

The Harvard Animal Law & Policy Program is committed to analyzing and improving the treatment of animals by the legal system. The Program engages with academics, students, practitioners and decision makers to foster discourse, facilitate scholarship, develop strategic solutions and build innovative bridges between theory and practice in the rapidly evolving area of animal law and policy.


Earlier this year, Lovvorn joined several other speakers for a series of talks as part of Animal Law Week, an Animal Law and Policy Program event held annually at Harvard Law School. Lovvorn spoke on “Climate Change Beyond Environmentalism.”