Jessica A. Bacher

  • Executive Director, Land Use Law Center
  • Adjunct Professor
Gerber Glass 205


BA, University of Florida
JD, Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University

For media inquiries, contact:

Rachael Silva
Assistant Dean for External Affairs
(914) 422-4354

Adjunct Professor Jessica Bacher is the Executive Director of the Land Use Law Center. Established in 1993, the Land Use Law Center is dedicated to fostering the development of sustainable communities and regions through the promotion of innovative land use strategies and dispute resolution techniques. As the Executive Director, Professor Bacher’s responsibilities include development and implementation of projects relating to local land use practice, energy siting, distressed property remediation, sustainable communities, land use responses to sea level rise, and affordable housing, as well as providing strategic assistance to numerous municipalities. 

Most recently, Professor Bacher led the City of Newburgh, NY, in the development of a distressed property remediation implementation plan that focuses on the development of a land bank. Additionally, she serves as a trainer for the Center’s award-winning Land Use Leadership Alliance Training Program that has educated over 2,500 local leaders in land use strategies, consensus building, and regional stewardship. Professor Bacher also chairs the American Bar Association’s Section of State and Local Government Law. At Haub Law, Professor Bacher serves as an Adjunct Professor, teaching Land Use Law, Sustainable Development Survey, and the Advanced Land Use and Sustainable Development Seminar. 

Professor Bacher also administers the Center’s academic programs and guides student research. In addition, she is a Lecturer and project supervisor at Yale School of the Environment, where she manages the school’s Land Use Clinic. She authors regular land use features in New York and national publications and has edited numerous small books in the fields of Land Use and Real Estate Law, including Breaking Ground and Planning and Building in Priority Growth Districts. She also presents at regional and national conferences and served on the New York State Climate Action Plan Land Use and Local Government Working Group, Climate Smart Communities Standards Committee, Master Plan for Aging Task Force, and the Sea Level Rise Task Force Legal Work Group. Professor Bacher was selected by the American Bar Association to receive the Jefferson B. Fordham Award, an award presented to a young practitioner who has shown great promise through her contributions to the field. Professor Bacher received her JD summa cum laude from Haub Law in 2003, along with a certificate in Environmental Law.

Honors & Awards:
Jefferson B. Fordham Award

(914) 422-4103
Office: Gerber Glass 205


Local Housing Initiatives, 21 N.Y Zoning L. & Prac. Rep., November/December 2020, at 1 (with Tiffany Zezula)

Problem Properties: Tools for Combatting Vacant and Distressed Properties Book, American Bar Association, Publication Pending 2019 (Editor with Alan Mallach and Meg Byerly Williams)

Increasing Coastal Community Resilience through Facilitated Land Use Training, Assessment, and Amendments, 41 Zoning & Planning L. Rep., November 2018, at 1 and 19 N.Y Zoning L. & Prac. Rep., November/December 2018, at 1 (with Tiffany Zezula)

Streamlining the Project Review and Approval Process to be Open for Business, 42 Zoning & Planning L. Rep., January 2019, at 1 (with Meg Byerly Williams)

A Practical Guide to Policies for New York State Land Banks, 13 N.Y Zoning L. & Prac. Rep.,March/April 2013, at 1 (with Madeline Fletcher)

Changing Times—Changing Practice: New Roles for Lawyers in Resolving Complex Land Use and Environmental Disputes, 27 Pace Envtl. L. Rev. 7, 2009-2010 (with John R. Nolon)

Modernization of New York’s Land Use Laws Continue to Meet Growing Challenges of Sustainability, 29 Pace L. Rev. 536, Spring 2009 (with Patricia E. Salkin) 

Confirming a Century of Case Law, in The Four Supreme Court Land-Use Decisions of 2005: Separating Fact from Fiction 71-75, 2005 (James Hecimovich, ed.) (with John R. Nolon)

Gaining Ground Information Database: A Report on a New Internet Research Library of Innovative Land Use Laws, Regulations, and Practices (2004) (Jessica A. Bacher et al., eds.)

Comment, The Beach Zone: Using Local Land Use Authority to Preserve Barrier Islands, 20 Pace Envtl. L. Rev. 299 (2002 Symposium Edition) (with Tiffany B. Zezula)