Sarah Nilsson JD, PhD, MAS
Sarah NilssonJD, PhD, MAS

When I tell people in the United States that I was born on the island of Malta, I inevitably invite the following question in response.


Where is Malta?

The island of Malta is a small independent nation state in the center of the Mediterranean, just below Sicily in Southern Europe.


Malta is an island nation that consists of three main islands: the main island Malta, a smaller island Gozo, and an even smaller island Comino.

The archipelago lies south of Sicily and North of Tunisia, in the center of the Mediterranean. The country’s official languages are Maltese and English. 

The main island, Malta, measures about 17 miles at its longest distance from southeast to northwest and about 9 miles at its widest distance from east to west.


The main physical characteristic of Malta is a well-defined escarpment that bisects it along the Victoria Lines Fault running along the whole breadth of the island from Point ir-Raħeb (west of Nadur Tower) to the coast northeast of Għargħur. The highest areas are coralline limestone uplands that constitute a triangular plateau, Ta’ Żuta (829 feet [253 meters]), to the west.


The uplands are separated from the surrounding areas by blue clay slopes, while under-cliff areas are found where the coralline plateau has fallen and forms a subordinate surface between the sea and the original shore. The total shoreline is 85 miles.


To the north the escarpment is occasionally abrupt and broken by deep embayments. To the south, however, the plateaus gradually descend from about 600–800 feet into undulating areas of globigerina (derived from marine protozoa) limestone less than 400 feet high.


On the west are deeply incised valleys and under-cliff areas, while on the east are several valleys that descend to the central plains. The west coast of Malta presents a high, bold, and generally harborless face.


On the east, however, a tongue of high ground known as Mount Sceberras separates the bays of Marsamxett and Grand Harbour. These deepwater harbors contribute to the strategic importance of Malta. They are associated with nine seasonal creeks that include those of Sliema, Lazzaretto, Msida, and Newport. The northern shore is again bare and craggy, characterized by its coves and hills, which are separated by fertile lowlands.


In Gozo the landscape is characterized by a broken coralline plateau to the north and by low-lying globigerina limestone plains and hills to the south. The highest point, in the west, is 578 feet. The total shoreline is 27 miles.

My favorite places on the island are the prehistoric temples.


The oldest buildings in Europe are found in Malta - older than the Pyramids of Egypt.


The occupation and settlement of Malta by modern humans began approximately 7,000 years ago, when the first Neolithic Farmers crossed the 50 mile-wide straits that separate the islands from Sicily. Prior to that, the islands were uninhabited. The undomesticated animals, at the beginning of the Holocene [12-10,000 years ago] would have been red deer, bear, fox and wolf. Much earlier than that, there is archaeological evidence of Pleistocene species [c. 250,000 years ago] such as dwarf elephants and hippopotami.


Check out the various webcams around Malta!


My favorite maltese expression: "Bil-qatra l-qatra timtela l-garra." 


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American Bar Association - member

Angel Flight West - Command Pilot

Arizona Pilots Association, member

Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, member

Women in Aviation, International, (Prescott ERAU Chapter) - member

Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity - lifetime member

Phi Kappa Phi - member

American Leadership and Policy Foundation - senior fellow

Phoenix School of Law Student Bar Association - Evening Student Delegate

Phoenix School of Law Aviation Law Student Association - President 

Phoenix School of Law Night Student Society - member



Federal Aviation Administration

Type rating - Citation CE 500

Airline Transport Pilot - Multi-engine land

Commercial pilot - Airplane single-engine land with instrument rating  

Flight instructor - Airplane single and multi-engine instrument with Gold Seal

Ground instructor - Advanced and Instrument

Remote Pilot sUAS Part 107 

Medical Certificate Class 1 



Drones Across the World is a free webbook.


While still copyrighted content, it is freely distributed worldwide under a Creative Commons, non-commercial, and non-derivative license.


This webbook is structured the way the United Nations views the globe, in 6 main areas, Northern America, Latin America and the Caribbean, Oceania, Europe, Asia, and Africa. In my course it is intended to be taught in a sequence, but it is also easily searchable by country if used as a reference guide.


This webbook has an interactive design with hyperlinks, and authenticated sources, that promotes information literacy.


Questions are provided in order to promote discussion and critical thinking, indicative of higher learning.





Drones Across America


available from the


American Bar Association






My doctoral dissertation for the Ph.D.


"Relationship between Recent Flight Experience and Pilot Error in General Aviation Accidents"



NilssonS_Approved DM.rtf.doc.rtf
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My Advanced Writing Requirement (AWR) for the J.D.


"A Circle Takes No Sides" on the topic of Circle Justice

A Circle Takes No Sides by Sarah J. Nils[...]
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Article about me:

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Thanksgiving Thoughts by Sarah J. Nilsson (11-28-2013)


Today, I am thankful for freedom of speech because I know what I am about to write will ruffle more feathers than all the thanksgiving turkeys sacrificed this year. In the last few weeks I have given much thought to the holiday of Thanksgiving… I have always been a thinker and I thank law school for teaching me to truly analyze… but really does it need to flow over into my personal life ALL the TIME?

First of all, let me provide a disclaimer. I am an immigrant to this country. I chose to be here, entered lawfully, and then a few years later chose to pledge my allegiance to this great nation. End of disclaimer. I write that because what I am about to write has been touted by some as anti-American…

I must start at the beginning and rewind back to property 1 class in my 3rd semester of law school and the case of Johnson v. M’Intosh, 21 U.S. 543, 587 (1823): “The United States, then, have unequivocally acceded to that great and broad rule by which its civilized inhabitants now hold this country. They hold, and assert in themselves, the title by which it was acquired. They maintain, as all others have maintained, that discovery gave an exclusive right to extinguish the Indian title of occupancy, either by purchase or by conquest; and gave also a right to such a degree of sovereignty, as the circumstances of the people would allow them to exercise.”

I have always taken issue with the way in which the first immigrants to this country treated the indigenous people…what happened to first in time having the property rights? I did not take a class on riparian law but I have read the Arizona cases involving the Gila Indians and water rights. And I am not a history major (science has always been my forte) but I have studied enough to know about the massacres and the Trail of Tears.

Recently, I was reminded about a famous quote: “History is written by the victors.” And that is so very true especially when it comes to details about the original thanksgiving. Remembering my law school training, analyze, analyze, analyze, and argue both sides… I looked up the American Indian side of the coin and decided in all fairness to just be thankful for 30 days in November … each day I have reflected on gratitude and appreciated even the mundane… I thought to myself … this should be a daily, 365-type of routine, not just a once a year event. Thus, I will always strive to be thankful for blessings great and small. Another quote presented itself to me: “Write your troubles in the sand, carve your blessings in stone.” This shall be my mantra!

A few weeks ago all hoopla broke loose when corporate America decided in its infinite greed for higher profits to take away a holiday (in my humble opinion Black Friday was more than enough shopping frenzy for one year) and require people in retail to work on Thanksgiving Day too. Some people stood their ground and some were fired. Others pitched tents outside the major chain stores a week ahead of Thanksgiving Day and rejoiced. Now, while I do not, as I previously mentioned, necessarily condone the one-sidedness of the traditional Thanksgiving holiday, having analyzed the other side of the historical coin, I do agree with the family aspects that came with it. The gathering around a table with bountiful dishes and celebrating with one’s loved ones is, to me at least, as I am sure to many of you too, the true meaning of Thanksgiving, and for that matter any other holiday on any other day, in any other culture or any other religious setting. This is what unites us all, immigrants and natives alike. The ability to come together in a circle of friendship and family and break bread, or turkey, tofu, or truffles, and raise our glasses of wine, whisky or wheat-beer. So, despite now being privy to the historical underpinnings of Thanksgiving Day (both sides of the coin), I still wish all people a day of rest from the daily toil, time with loved ones, and plenty of delicious dishes, bellies full of laughter and good times. I only wish this great Nation would forgive the past (not forget mind you for that would doom us all to a repeat of history!), and come to realize that no matter one’s background, one’s heritage, one’s skin color, creed, race, religion or other uniqueness, we are all one race, the human race! 


Contact Me

Sarah Nilsson, J.D., Ph.D., MAS


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Legal Disclaimer

The information on this website is for EDUCATIONAL purposes only and DOES NOT constitute legal advice. 

While the author of this website is an attorney, she is not YOUR attorney, nor are you her client, until you enter into a written agreement with Nilsson Law, PLLC to provide legal services.

In no event shall Sarah Nilsson be liable for any special, indirect, or consequential damages relating to this material, for any use of this website, or for any other hyperlinked website.



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