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Land Use Institute

Advisory Committee

Darby Bradley

Former President, now Special Assistant for Donor and Government Relations, Vermont Land Trust, Montpelier, VT.

Darby Bradley's experience with land conservation spans four decades, with much of that time spent as staff to the Vermont Land Trust where he served as General Counsel, President, and now Special Assistant for Donor and Government Relations. Darby's experience includes serving on the Board of the Land Trust Alliance and numerous state advisory roles. He is widely considered a leader in the land trust movement.

David J. Brower

Research Professor, Department of City and Regional Planning, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Planner and lawyer, his research interests include growth management, coastal zone management, integrating the impacts of natural hazards, sustainable development, and environmental ethics. Dr. Brower is currently working to create a graduate course for the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Emergency Management Higher Education Project. Dr. Brower is also currently working with DCRP graduate students to revise North Carolina’s state and local hazard mitigation plans. The research conducted by Dr. Brower and his student’s will provide valuable information to local planners and guide the state in many years to come on the best way to proactively mitigate natural hazards-before they strike. Dr. Brower also has an active planning consulting practice and is admitted to practice law in several states as well as before the U.S. Supreme Court. He has served as an officer and on the boards of several state and national organizations including the American Planning Association and the Growth Management Institute. Visit

Juli Beth Hinds

Former Planning Director, South Burlington; now with VHB, Inc., Ferrisburgh, VT

Named 2008’s Outstanding Professional Planner of the Year by the Vermont Planners Association (VPA). The selection is based on criteria related to the candidate's demonstrated support of the planning profession, innovation, leadership, effectiveness, and results. Ms. Hinds is recognized for her Vermont and national planning experience, as well as her knowledge of stormwater and wastewater policy and management. She has extensive experience in planning, teaching, serving on advisory boards and committees, and leading regulatory and development reviews, in addition to providing expert testimony and media appearances. As the former Director of Planning and Zoning for the City of South Burlington, Vermont, Ms. Hinds was responsible for all aspects of comprehensive planning, land use permitting, and land development regulations, including the establishment of the first stormwater utility in Vermont. In collaboration with VHB's project teams, Ms. Hinds assists with ongoing projects including work for the Sugarbush Resort Master Plan; the Towns of Hinesburg and Duxbury, VT; South Hadley, Massachusetts; and Burlington International Airport. She is working to expand VHB's role in water resource management, design, and policy projects. VHB is an 800-person firm that provides integrated transportation, land development, and environmental services from 18 offices along the east coast. Visit

John B. Kassel

Shems, Dunkiel, Kassel, and Saunders, Burlington, VT

Counsels businesses, non-profit organizations (including foundations) and individuals, with a particular focus on the creation, permitting and start-up of renewable energy projects. John has a BA, magna cum laude, in Russian, from Middlebury College (1980) and a JD, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, from Cornell Law School (1986), where he was a senior editor of the Cornell Law Review. He was a law clerk to the Hon. Joseph L. Tauro, United States District Judge, District of Massachusetts, from 1986-87, and from 1987-92 practiced environmental and public utility law, and general business litigation, with a law firm in Burlington, Vermont. From 1992-94 he prosecuted felonies and misdemeanors as a criminal prosecutor in the Chittenden State's Attorney's office, and in 1994 became General Counsel to the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources. He was appointed Deputy Secretary of the Agency in 1997 and served from 1998 to 2000 as Secretary of the Agency, a Cabinet-level position. From 2000-01 he was Of Counsel to a Burlington litigation firm. He is a former Chair of the Environmental Law Section of the Vermont Bar Association, and is also active in several professional organizations as well as many community and environmental organizations. Visit

R. Jeffrey Lyman

Goodwin, Procter, Boston, MA

R. J. Lyman is a real estate partner at Goodwin Procter, where he represents clients in all aspects of commercial real estate development, including site acquisition, project permitting, debt and equity financing, and property disposition. Mr. Lyman has been engaged as counsel in many of the largest developments in Massachusetts, including these representative projects in 2005 and 2006:

  • Representation of American Real Estate Properties, L.P., a publicly traded company chaired by investor Carl C. Icahn, in connection with permitting and financing of single family houses and condominium units and retail and office space at its resort property, New Seabury, on Cape Cod.
  • Representation of Equity Office Properties Trust, the nation’s largest office REIT, in connection with potential redevelopment of 175 Wyman Street in Waltham, Massachusetts, abutting Route 128 opposite the Cambridge Reservoir.
  • Representation of Federal Realty Investment Trust, an NYSE-listed REIT, in connection with acquisition and development of a multi-tenant mall and underutilized industrial acres in Somerville, Massachusetts for redevelopment.
  • Before joining Goodwin Procter, Mr. Lyman served as Assistant Environmental Secretary and MEPA Director under Massachusetts Governor William F. Weld. Visit

Dwight H. Merriam

Robinson & Cole, Hartford, CT

Represents developers, local governments, landowners, and advocacy groups in land development and conservation issues. He has published over 180 professional articles on land use law, co-edited Inclusionary Zoning Moves Downtown, co-authored The Takings Issue, and authored The Complete Guide to Zoning. He is a Fellow and past president of the American Institute of Certified Planners, a former director of the American Planning Association (APA) and a previous chair of APA’s Planning & Law Division. He is also a member of the American College of Real Estate Lawyers and The Counselors of Real Estate, and he teaches land use law at Vermont Law School. Mr. Merriam received his B.A. in sociology, cum laude, from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he was also elected to Phi Kappa Phi. He received his master of regional planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and his J.D. at Yale Law School. Visit

Patricia E. Salkin

Raymond & Ella Smith Distinguished Professor of Law and Associate Dean and Director, Government Law Center, Albany Law School

Associate Dean, Professor of Law and Director of the Government Law Center of Albany Law School, which she joined in 1990. She teaches courses in land use law, housing law and policy, NYS administrative law, current legal issues in government and government ethics. She is also on the adjunct faculty at the University at Albany in the Department of Geography and Planning where she teaches courses in planning law and planning ethics. She is a member of the faculty of the ALI-ABA Land Use Institute, and has served as a lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Design. Prior New York government service includes the Office of Rural Affairs, the Department of State, and the State Senate. Dean Salkin is a nationally recognized expert on land use law and zoning. She is the author of the popular blog, Law of the Land. Visit

Peter D. Van Oot

Downs, Rachlin, Martin, Brattleboro, VT

Advises commercial clients, utilities and institutions on significant policy issues, permits and transactions that require a range of expertise in corporate, environmental and regulatory law. With a practice concentrated in Vermont, New Hampshire and Massachusetts, Peter provides strategic advice and serves as outside general counsel to a number of corporations and institutions. He also chairs DRM’s Regulated Entities Group, which includes DRM’s Energy & Telecommunications Group, Real Estate, Land Use & Environmental Law Group, Government & Public Affairs Group and Health Law Group. As a trained and experienced environmental lawyer, Peter has served as lead counsel on significant development projects, negotiated numerous environmental settlements with the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Justice, state regulatory agencies and third parties. He served on the National Commission on Superfund Reform, provides strategic counsel to clients, speaks to the regulated community and testifies before legislative committees on regulatory and environmental issues. As corporate counsel, Peter serves as outside general counsel to for-profit corporations, non-for profit organizations and educational institutions, with a focus on transactional, governance, environmental and regulatory matters. Peter was selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2009 and New England Superlawyers. He received an AV® peer-review rating from Martindale-Hubbell as an environmental lawyer. Visit