Scott Beckstead was born and raised in southern Idaho on a working cattle ranch and considers himself a lifelong horseman and animal lover. Mr. Beckstead went to college and law school in Utah, graduating from the University of Utah School of Law in 1991. He worked for a small firm on the central Oregon coast from 1991 to 1994, established a solo practice in 1994, and operated the only law office in Waldport, Oregon for fifteen years after that. Mr. Beckstead also served as Mayor of Waldport from 2002 to 2005. Scott has developed a special expertise in animal law and has taught the subject at the University of Oregon School of Law. He also co-authored the first textbook on the subject.

In 2008, Mr. Beckstead went to work for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) as their Oregon director. His first job at HSUS was to help establish the Duchess Sanctuary, a large horse sanctuary in Douglas County that is currently home to nearly 200 abused, neglected and abandoned horses. He also worked during the past legislative session to help get four important animal welfare bills passed.