Ron Opsahl

Senior Attorney

As a wildlife biologist and natural resource attorney, Ron is able to couple a deep understanding of the scientific principles underpinning environmental and natural resource issues with a thorough grasp of the law to represent clients’ interests in private and public land use and development. He is an experienced litigator, primarily specializing in litigation focused on administrative appeals, judicial review of administrative decisions, and state and federal land use plans and determinations involving wildlife management, mining claims and mineral development, oil and gas development, timber harvest, livestock grazing, and other uses of public and private lands.

Ron is an MSLF alum, having served as a Staff Attorney between 2005 and 2011, and returned to MSLF as its Senior Attorney in May 2019. Ron leads MSLF’s endangered species and natural resources efforts, is licensed to practice in Arizona, Colorado, Kansas (inactive), Montana, and Wyoming, and is admitted to appear in several U.S. District Courts, the Ninth and Tenth Circuit Courts of Appeal, and the United States Supreme Court.

Related Cases
Pena v. Horan

California’s De Facto Handgun Ban is Unconstitutional

California has imposed many unconstitutional requirements upon handguns to limit purchases. By requiring non-standard or non-existent features, the state has effectively created a ban on handguns. As a result, California residents are being unfairly denied their Second Amendment protected rights. 

Rayco, LLC v. Bernhardt

Fighting to Save the Family Legacy

Emerson and Fay Ray were a young couple, recently married, when they first came to California. It was the height of the Great Depression and Emerson had heard he might be able to get a job in California pouring concrete. Now the government is threatening to destroy the legacy they built for their family.

Related Posts

Standing Up for Southwestern Ranchers

Tom Paterson of Spur Ranch Cattle Company is one of many southwestern ranchers now endangered by environmentalist litigation trying to end grazing on federally managed lands in Arizona and New Mexico. MSLF is determined to protect them.

MSLF Welcomes Nicole Sanders as Major Gifts Officer

Our foundation is proud to announce our latest hire, Nicole Sanders, will join our fundraising team on March 16 as a Major Gifts Officer. Nicole comes to Mountain States Legal Foundation from Students for Liberty in Texas, where she was a senior development officer.

Yes, Presidents Can Reduce National Monuments’ Size

Yesterday, MSLF filed a brief on behalf of two Utah counties near Grand Staircase-Escalante. In it, MSLF joined with several local individuals and sporting organizations represented by Pacific Legal Foundation, rural farmers, and the State of Utah again supporting the federal government’s position in Wilderness Society v. Trump that it lawfully reduced the size of two Utah national monuments.

Ranchers Fight to Survive

Here in the American West, it is vital for families who make a living raising livestock to be able to pass on their legacy. With every drop of sweat that you pour into the land, you earn the right to pass on that land. Until the government takes it away like they did to the Corrigans.

Women of the West: Pioneering Westerners Led the Way on Women’s Vote

March is Women’s History Month and in 2020 America will celebrate 100 years since the 19th Amendment granted women the right to vote. Many Western states can proudly say they did it first. A full 20 states or territories granted women the vote ahead of 1920, led by the West.

Video: A 37 Year Fight to Use Leased Lands

Imagine buying a lease from the government, spending years following the rules and preparing to access leased minerals, only to have it cancelled and have to sue for your rights? Sidney Longwell doesn’t have to imagine. He’s living it.