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David J. Hayes
Lecturer in Law

Biography 

David J. Hayes is a Distinguished Visiting Lecturer in Law at the Stanford Law School. Prior to teaching at Stanford, Hayes served as the Deputy Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of the Department of the Interior. As the Senate-confirmed #2 official at Interior from 2009 until July, 2013, he had line authority over Interior’s 70,000 employees, $12 billion dollar budget, and the Department's ten major bureaus and agencies.

Hayes focused on energy, climate change, conservation and Indian issues during his tenure at Interior. On the energy and climate change front, he was a key leader in facilitating the approval of more than 13,000 megawatts of renewable energy projects on public lands and offshore waters; he led the Secretary’s Climate Change and Energy Task Force and developed a network of Climate Science Centers and Landscape Conservation Cooperatives to study and address climate change-related impacts on water, wildlife and coastal resources; and he served as point for Secretary Salazar in managing Interior’s response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill crisis in the Gulf of Mexico, including reorganization of the Department’s offshore leasing, regulatory and enforcement functions. He received the U.S. Coast Guard's highest civilian honor (the USCG's Distinguished Public Service Award) for his leadership in addressing the Gulf oil spill.

On the conservation front, Hayes worked with Secretaries Salazar and Jewell to protect sensitive landscapes and resources by introducing new planning approaches for energy and water development, including advanced mitigation planning (the Western Solar Plan; Master Leasing Plans; the Bay Delta Conservation Plan; the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan), and by assisting in the creation of new National Parks, National Wildlife Refuges and National Monuments. Hayes was designated by the President's Executive Order 13580 to ‚Äčlead the Administration's energy development and permitting activities in Alaska and, in discharging those responsibilities, he advocated for a comprehensive "Integrated Arctic Management" approach to addressing conservation and development issues in the Alaskan Arctic. Hayes also helped develop the U.S. response to the international wildlife trafficking crisis, and is currently serving as Vice Chair of the President’s Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking. On American Indian and Alaska Native matters, Hayes led the team that secured the $3.4 billion dollar settlement and subsequent Congressional approval of the long-standing Cobell Indian trust litigation; he oversaw the Department’s Indian Water Rights office and was actively engaged in negotiating major Indian water rights settlements; and he worked with the Alaska Native community to develop small-scale renewable energy projects for off-the-grid, diesel power-dependent villages.

Prior to serving as the Deputy Secretary of the Interior, Hayes was a leader in President Obama's Transition Team. He headed up the energy and environmental agency review process, installing and overseeing teams embedded in the Departments of Energy, Agriculture, and Interior and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Hayes previously served as counselor to the Secretary of the Interior and then as Deputy Secretary from 1997 to 2001 in the Clinton Administration. Before and between his service in the Clinton and Obama Administrations, Hayes worked in the private sector where he was a partner and Global Chair of the Environment, Land and Resources Department at Latham and Watkins, an international law firm. He is a former Chairman of the Board of the Environmental Law Institute, Chairman of the Board of Visitors for Stanford Law School and Vice-Chair of the Board of American Rivers. He also formerly served as a Senior Fellow for the Hewlett Foundation and for the World Wildlife Fund.

Hayes graduated summa cum laude from the University of Notre Dame and received his J.D. from Stanford University, where he was an editor of the Stanford Law Review.