Ellen’s broad environmental legal experience and relevant academic training make her the firm’s “go to” attorney for complex legal and regulatory matters. She has successfully addressed cutting edge permitting, development, and operation issues for clients.
Ellen assists clients both before and after there are potential legal issues, both in the administrative arena and in litigation. Recent regulatory representation areas include state and EPA permit reviews and associated appeals; exploring the limits of municipal authority in different jurisdictions; and analyzing and drafting various comments on state and federal rulemakings, including NPDES programs and permits, operating staff licensure and staffing, and water quality standards development.
Ellen has a strong command of federal environmental laws as well as a multitude of counterpart state laws. She plays a critical role in preparing detailed regulatory reports for State Industry Associations and membership meetings. Ellen is skilled at identifying and interpreting state legislation which would affect firm clients and client associations.
She has directly supported the firm’s many litigation matters, navigating complicated legal questions, drafting effective briefing, organizing related discovery, and keeping clients apprised. Ellen also assists clients with enforcement defense as well as modifying enforcement documents (i.e., federal consent decrees) to better achieve client programmatic goals.
Ellen has analyzed PFAS legal developments nationwide and attends regular state agency stakeholder meetings on PFAS regulatory efforts. Her work also includes submitting comments on behalf of clients regarding the groundbreaking rulemakings on PFAS, such as the potential CERCLA designation and the proposed MCLs for PFOA/PFOS.
While predominantly working on water law, from past work experience Ellen is familiar with the other major environmental statutes critical to successful utilities including the Clean Air Act, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the National Historic Preservation Act.
In addition to her demonstrated dedication to the environmental practice field, she is also a Fulbright Scholar (Hamburg, Germany 2009-2010).
Her professional affiliations include:
- Virginia State Bar, Environmental Section, Board of Governors
- Richmond Bar Association Environmental & Energy Law Section, Chair
- American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources, Member
LL.M., Environmental Law, Vermont Law School, 2014, magna cum laude
J.D., The University of Mississippi School of Law, 2013, cum laude
Mississippi Law Journal, Executive Articles Editor
Environmental Law Society, President
B.A., Environmental Studies and German, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2008
Virginia State Bar, Environmental Section, Board of Governors
Richmond Bar Association Environmental & Energy Law Section, Chair
American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources, Member
U.S Supreme Court
M.D. North Carolina