LaJuana Wilcher, Sarah Jarboe present to Kentucky Rural Water Association

by Mandy Hicks

Attorneys LaJuana Wilcher and Sarah Jarboe gave a presentation on October 30 as part of the Kentucky Rural Water Association’s Water Law Series.  They presented on the top 10 environmental legal issues facing water and wastewater utilities, including challenges related to fluoridation, nitrates, and revisions to the Clean Air Act’s risk management plan rule. LaJuana and Sarah are partners in the firm who work extensively in the area of environmental law.

The Kentucky Rural Water Association is headquartered in Bowling Green. Member utilities guarantee an enhanced quality of life for nearly 95% of the public drinking water and wastewater customers across the Commonwealth of Kentucky, making KRWA the largest utility organization of the state. KRWA was established in 1979 as a private, non-profit organization by a core group of utility leaders who shared the vision of building a self-governed, member driven association. Their original goal – to foster professionalism in the industry through non-regulatory training, technical assistance programs, and advocacy – continues to this day.

About LaJuana Wilcher

LaJuana Wilcher
LaJuana Wilcher

LaJuana S. Wilcher is a partner at English, Lucas, Priest & Owsley, LLP. During her career, she has been a trial lawyer, served in senior policy positions in the federal and state governments, taught law at Vanderbilt University Law School and Vermont Law School, and represented corporate, municipal and not-for-profit clients in private law practice throughout the country.

Nominated by President George H.W. Bush and confirmed by the U.S. Senate in 1989, Ms. Wilcher was USEPA’s senior official in the Office of Water, where she managed legislative, policy and program matters, and served as EPA’s lead representative in the $1.3 billion Exxon Valdez oil spill negotiations. She served as Assistant Administrator for Water at at the EPA from 1989 to 1993.

As a partner with Winston & Strawn (1993-1996) and LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacCrae (1996-2002) in Washington, DC, she counseled multinational corporations on strategic, policy, legislation and litigation matters. She returned to her hometown of Bowling Green, KY in 2002, and soon was tapped to serve as Cabinet Secretary for Kentucky’s Environmental and Public Protection Cabinet, which consolidated over 30 regulatory agencies, including the Departments of Environmental Protect, Labor, Financial Institutions, Insurance, Mine Safety and Alcoholic Beverage Control, as well as the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority, among others. In 2006, she returned to private practice at ELPO, where she handles a variety of regulatory and legislative matters, but focuses on environmental issues.

Ms. Wilcher has been listed in Best Lawyers in America since 2009. She serves on the Salmon P. Chase College of Law Board of Visitors, the WKU Ogden College Advisory Council, the Warren County Conservation District and the Friends of Mammoth Cave National Park Board. She and her husband, Ed Tivol, live in Alvaton, Kentucky, where they operate Scuffle Hill Farm, growing alfalfa hay and grass-fed, free-range, Angus cattle.

About Sarah Jarboe

Sarah Jarboe
Sarah Jarboe

Sarah Jarboe is a partner at ELPO. She handles environmental law and civil litigation for ELPO. She served as Chair of the Environment, Energy and Resources law section of the Kentucky Bar Association in 2016-2017, sat on the American Bar Association‘s Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) Fall 2016 and 2017 Conference Planning Committees, and was selected as one of 12 participants in SEER’s 2014-2015 Leadership Development Program.

As part of her practice, Sarah has represented water and wastewater utilities and industrial dischargers in permitting and enforcement actions. Sarah has also advised clients on various environmental matters, including the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, and the Safe Drinking Water Act. Sarah is an experienced negotiator, having participated in negotiations in enforcement and permitting cases with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Kentucky Department for Environmental Protection.

Sarah is a graduate of Vanderbilt Law School, where she received the Scholastic Excellence Award in Environmental Law in 2010 for achieving the highest grade in her class and served as Managing Editor of the Environmental Law and Policy Annual Review Journal. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Louisville. Sarah joined ELPO in 2013 after serving as a law clerk for two years for Chief Justice John D. Minton of the Kentucky Supreme Court.