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Scott Beckstead

Lecturer in Law

Headshot of Scott Beckstead

Contact Information

Salem Campus

245 Winter Street SE
Salem  Oregon  97301


Scott Beckstead works as director of campaigns for Center for a Humane Economy and Animal Wellness Action. After receiving his bachelor's degree from Utah State University and his JD from the University of Utah, Beckstead worked as an attorney in private practice for 17 years on the central Oregon coast before going to work full-time in the animal protection sector. During his time on the coast he also served as the mayor of Waldport, Oregon from 2002 to 2007.

He became known for his special expertise in the field of animal law, and has taught that subject at the University of Oregon and Willamette University law schools. In 2000, he co-authored Animal Law, the first casebook on the subject, and continues to teach animal law, wildlife law and policy, Endangered Species Act, and cannabis law and policy as an adjunct professor of law at Willamette University. From 2008 to 2020, Beckstead served in a multitude of roles for the Humane Society of the United States, including Oregon state director, equine protection specialist, and Rural Outreach director; he also helped lead a successful ballot measure campaign in 2016 to ban the trade in endangered wildlife in Oregon.

Because of his close familiarity with horses, livestock, and farm animals, Beckstead provides training to law enforcement agencies on how to handle and work with those animals, and how to investigate equine and livestock cruelty and neglect.

He lives in Sutherlin, Oregon with his family, which includes three dogs and a rabbit named Mr. Hobbes.


  • JD, University of Utah, 1991
  • BA, Utah State University, 1988


  • Law 219: Cannabis Law & Policy
  • Law 263: Animal Law
  • Law 277: Biodiversity and Endangered Species Law
  • Law 368: Animal Agriculture Law
  • Law 375: Wildlife Law: Alaska


Animal Law, (Carolina Academic Press, 2000), by Beckstead, S. et al.
Willamette University

Faculty Support

Willamette University
College of Law
245 Winter Street SE
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.
(503) 370-6405