Marcilynn A. Burke

Dean and Dave Frohnmayer Chair in Leadership and Law

Marcilynn A. Burke
Dean and Dave Frohnmayer Chair in Leadership and Law

Phone: 541-346-3836


Academic Interests

Leadership, Land Use, Property, Environment, Natural Resources


Dean Marcilynn A. Burke studies leadership, property, environmental and natural resources law. At Oregon Law, she serves as Dean and the Dave Frohnmayer Chair in Leadership and Law. Her scholarly works have included features in the Notre Dame Law Review, the Land Use and Environmental Law Review, the University of Cincinnati Law Review, and the Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum. 

From 2009-2013, Dean Burke served in the Bureau of Land Management of the U.S. Department of the Interior, initially as deputy director for programs and policy, and following a 2011 appointment by President Barack Obama, as the Acting Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management. In that role, she helped develop the land use, resource management, and regulatory oversight policies that are administered by the BLM, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, and the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, with a geographic scope that encompasses the continental U.S. and Alaska. Following her term at the BLM, she resumed her role as associate dean and associate professor of law at the University of Houston Law Center, where she had served as a member of the faculty since 2002.

Dean Burke earned her bachelor's degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, having been named to Phi Beta Kappa, and her law degree from Yale Law School, where she was an editor for both the Yale Journal of Law and Feminism and the Yale Journal of International Law. She clerked for the Honorable Raymond A. Jackson of the Eastern District of Virginia, and later joined the law firm of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton where her practice focused on environmental law, antitrust, and civil and criminal litigation. Dean Burke had also served as a visiting professor of law at Rutgers School of Law in Camden, NJ in 2001.

Select Scholarly Work

"The Emperor’s New Clothes: Exposing the Failures of Regulating Land Use Through the Ballot Box," 84 NOTRE DAME L. REV. 1453 (2009) (lead article) Reprinted in 41 LAND USE & ENVTL. L. REV. __ (2010) (chosen by professors and practitioners as one of the top four land use articles for 2009)

"Green Peace? Protecting Our National Treasures While Providing for Our National Security," 32 WM. & MARY ENVTL. L. & POL’Y REV. 803 (2008)

"Much Ado About Nothing: Kelo v. City of New London, Sweet Home v. Babbitt, and Other Tales from the Supreme Court," 75 U. CIN. L. REV. 663 (2006) (lead article)

"Klamath Farmers and Cappuccino Cowboys: The Rhetoric of the Endangered Species Act and Why it (Still) Matters," 14 DUKE ENVTL. L. & POL’Y F. 441 (2004) 

Full Listing of Scholarly Works at SSRN


(541) 346-3836
Assistant: Lillian Lorenzen
Scholarly Works


Marcilynn A. Burke
Dean and Dave Frohnmayer Chair in Leadership and Law