Stephanie Showalter Otts is the Director of the National Sea Grant Law Center and the Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Legal Program at the University of Mississippi School of Law. Stephanie graduated from Penn State University with a B.A. in History and received a joint J.D./Masters of Studies in Environmental Law from Vermont Law School in 2001. Stephanie began her career at the University of Mississippi School of Law in 2002 as the National Sea Grant Law Center’s first staff attorney (research counsel). Prior to joining the University of Mississippi, Stephanie served as a Law Clerk for the Superior Court of Pennsylvania in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. She is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania and Mississippi.
As Director, Stephanie oversees a variety of legal education, research, and outreach activities addressing ocean and coastal law issues. She conducts legal research and provides technical assistance to organizations and governmental agencies on a variety of topics, including aquaculture, fisheries, invasive species, and coastal development. Stephanie also teaches a foundational course on ocean and coastal law at the University of Mississippi School of Law and serves as the co-coach of the Pace Environmental Law Moot Court team.
Her research on natural resources, marine, and environmental law issues has been published in a variety of publications. Stephanie has conducted extensive research on marine and freshwater invasive species. Recent relevant publications include “Confronting the Marine Invasive Species Threat: Practical and Legal Challenges” in Climate Change Impacts on Ocean and Coastal Law: U.S. and International Perspectives (2014) and “Legislative and Regulatory Efforts to Minimize Expansion of Invasive Mussels through Watercraft Movements” in the Arizona Journal of Environmental Law and Policy (Summer 2013).