J.D., 2000, with honors, University of Michigan Law School
B.A., 1994, with honors, University of Oregon



Previous Experience


Top 40 Under 40, Pacific Coast Business Times


Community Involvement

Liaison to the Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, U.C.S.B.; Member of Bren's Council of Legal Advisors

Russell M. McGlothlin

Russell McGlothlin is a Shareholder in Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck's Santa Barbara office and a member of the firm’s Natural Resources Department. Russell possesses extensive experience concerning water use and management in California and the western United States, including water right permitting and adjudication, water transfers, conjunctive water use, water quality, and reclamation. In addition to his water practice, he has significant experience respecting regulated utilities, energy, land use, real estate, local government, and environmental matters, including CEQA and ESA compliance. He represents private companies, municipalities, special districts, and individual landowners with transactional negotiations, litigation, and administrative agency proceedings.

Russell is presently participating in a small group of lawyers and other policy specialist convened by the Association of California Water Agencies to develop proposed legislation to reform California groundwater law. He also frequently publishes and speaks on water law topics. Particularly notable publications include a recent journal article published in the Denver Water Law Review titled “No Fictions Required: Assessing the Public Trust Doctrine in Pursuit of Balanced Water Management,” and authorship of two chapters of the Groundwater Resources Association’s handbook, “California Groundwater Management.” He is also member of the Council of Legal Advisors to the Bren School of Environmental Science & Management at the University of California at Santa Barbara.

Representative Matters

Drafted joint powers agreement and oversaw the formation of a joint powers authority comprised of the six cities of the Monterey Peninsula. Presently represent the authority as special counsel before the California Public Utilities Commission with respect to a comprehensive replacement water supply project that includes a large desalination plant and potential advanced-treated reclaimed water and groundwater replenishment project. Further representation includes matters before the State Water Resources Control Board concerning compliance with a cease and desist order pertaining to the community’s water supply and other related water matters.
Water rights counsel to association comprised of all agricultural groundwater producers from the Santa Paula Groundwater Basin in Ventura County. Representation has included development of original stipulated judgment adjudicating basin water rights, subsequent amendment of the adjudication judgment, and related matters pertaining to the use and management of basin resources under the judgment.
General counsel to large agricultural mutual water company in Ventura County. Representation includes water rights, infrastructure development, and corporate matters.
Obtained reversal in full of two separate, but related trial court decisions denying motions to amend judgments governing the West Coast and Central groundwater basins, which provide local water supplies to the millions of people living and working in the greater Los Angeles region. The motions seek to provide for the conjunctive use and management of the basins, including procedures for use of the basins' available storage space. (Hillside Memorial Park and Mortuary v. Golden State Water Co. (2011) 199 Cal.App.4th 658 (review denied); Water Replenishment Dist. of Southern Cal. v. City of Cerritos (2012) 202 Cal.App.4th 1063 (review denied).)
Hearing before the State Water Resources Control Board concerning a draft Cease and Desist Order limiting diversions from the Carmel River.
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Publications & Presentations

"Central and West Basin Litigation: History, Lessons Learned and Recent Judgment Amendments in the Central Basin,"  Panelist, California Water Law, CLE International, June 12-13, 2014
"Desalination and Groundwater / A 'New Water’ Cocktail,"  Panelist, Groundwater Law, American Ground Water Trust Conference, Los Angeles, CA, May 20-21, 2014
"Water Management from a Forgone Era,"  Co-Author, Los Angeles Daily Journal, April 22, 2014
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Case Studies


Renewable Energy
Climate Change

Case Studies

Representative Matters

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