Robert Uram

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP

$ $$$

Embarcadero Center Four
San Francisco 94111 CA US

Robert J. Uram is Of Counsel in the Real Estate, Land Use, Natural Resources and Environmental practice group in the firm’s San Francisco office. He is a founding member of the firm’s Organic Food and Fiber Law group. Mr. Uram has more than 35 years of experience on wetlands, endangered species, water quality, land use, mining, public lands and Indian Law issues.

He is a nationally recognized expert in the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Endangered Species Act, and the Clean Water Act. He also advises clients on organic food and fiber law, climate change and sustainability issues. Mr. Uram has worked on wetlands, water quality, and endangered species issues on projects throughout California, including the San Francisco Bay Area, Sacramento Area, Central Valley, Inland Empire, Central Coast and Southern California.

Mr. Uram played a key role in the development of Regional HCP/NCCPs in Orange County and participated in the development of the NCCP program. His clients include both private interests and local governments. Mr. Uram works on laws concerning the organic food and fiber industry. This includes the Organic Food Production Act of 1990 and the California Organic Food Act.

He represents the Organic Trade Association and organic food distribution and production companies and 501(c)(3) organizations that support research to improve organic farming. With the assistance of his partners, he represents these organizations on a broad range of national policy issues, including organic compliance, corporate, contract, labor, and intellectual property issues.

President Clinton appointed Mr. Uram as Director of the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement in 1993. He served in that post until September 1996. Prior to this post, Mr. Uram was a partner at McCutchen, Doyle, Brown and Enersen in San Francisco.

He also worked at the Department of the Interior (1973-1983), where he advised the Bureau of Land Management on federal land use planning and mineral development, oil and gas leasing and Indian law. From 1979 to 1980, Mr. Uram served as the Associate Solicitor for Surface Mining, where he served as chief counsel for the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement.

From 1983 until 1985, Mr. Uram was Counsel and Partner at White, Koch, Kelly & McCarthy in Santa Fe, New Mexico. His practice included representing clients in water law, zoning, timber and mining issues. Mr. Uram frequently lectures on wetland, endangered species, mining, and organic food and fiber law issues.


  • Represents the developer of a 20,000 unit master planned community in Los Angeles County and obtained a Section 404 permit for the project.
  • Represented the developer of the El Sobrante Landfill in Southern California on the preparation of a Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Plan.
  • Represented the City of San Francisco on wetlands and endangered species issues related to the proposed expansion of the San Francisco Airport.
  • Represented the developer on numerous projects in the City of Irvine in obtaining authorizations from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Regional Water Quality Control Board and Department of Fish and Game.
  • Advises organic food and fiber manufacturers and related entities on compliance with the National Organic Program, and advises clients on issues related to the effect of genetically modified organisms.
  • Represented client in a dispute over title to sand and gravel and a claim for trespass by the surface owner against the operator of a sand and gravel mine.
  • Represented clients who received “cease and desist” orders from the Army Corps of Engineers based on allegations of placing fill into waters of the United States without a permit.


  • J.D., Northwestern Law School, 1973, cum laude
  • B.A., University of Pennsylvania, 1969


  • California
  • New Mexico
  • Pennsylvania


  • Member, American College of Environmental Lawyers
  • Member, Organic Trade Association


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Embarcadero Center Four
San Francisco 94111 CA US
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Broadway 42
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