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Jillian Hishaw Presents Systematic Land Theft: Divestment, Dispossession, and Discrimination


Featuring Jillian Hishaw

Jillian Hishaw is the author of Systematic Land Theft, her new textbook and serves as an agricultural attorney. She is also the founder and CEO of F.A.R.M.S. Inspired by her own family’s land loss, this international non-profit provides technical and legal assistance to small farmers while reducing hunger in the farmer’s community. Systematic Land Theft focuses on how the theft of tribal land and the inhumane use of enslaved Africans in the U.S. led to Whites owning over 95 percent of U.S. land. Hishaw’s accounts, along with expert interviews and farmers’ stories, show how land loss and discrimination have impacted their families. Economic disparities, land tenure cases, and resolutions are included.

Hishaw has over 15 years of professional experience in the areas of civil rights, land protection, and agricultural policy. Her prior experience working on land protection matters for local and state agencies and on civil rights matters for the U.S. Department of Agriculture within the Office of Civil Rights in Washington, D.C. has given her immense insight on the topic of land loss. Past academic publications include The Drake Journal of Agricultural Law, The Journal of Food Law & Policy, South Dakota Law Review, Environmental and Energy Law Policy Journal, and the American Bar Association’s Environmental, Energy and Resources Agricultural Management Newsletter.

Hishaw’s recent advocacy work for Black farmers in the hemp and cannabis space has led to published op-ed articles in Civil Eats, The Counter, and HempLand U.S.A. In 2017, Hishaw was recognized as a “Food Changemaker” by the Clif Bar Foundation and has been featured in O, The Oprah Magazine, The Atlantic, Vice News, The Washington Post, and more. In 2019, the Food Tank organization voted Hishaw 1 of 15 women in the world impacting the food industry. Hishaw has a bachelor’s degree in biology from Tuskegee University and earned her J.D. and LL.M. in agricultural law at the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville Law School. To learn more, please visit www.jillianhishaw.com.

Black Law Student Association