Nationally Recognized Attorney LaJuana Wilcher Attends Clean Water Act 50th Anniversary

by Ashley Carter

ELPO Law partner LaJuana Wilcher is in Cleveland, Ohio as an invited guest of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan to participate in a special recognition of the 50th anniversary of the enactment of the federal Clean Water Act (CWA). The celebration is taking place on the banks of the Cuyahoga River, which infamously caught fire in the 1960s, spurring Congress to pass the CWA to help protect the nation’s waters on October 18, 1972.

In 1989 LaJuana was the first woman to be confirmed by the Senate to be EPA’s Assistant Administrator for Water in Washington, D.C., and was the only woman to serve in that position for the first 48 years of the CWA’s history.  She also served as Kentucky’s Secretary of Environmental and Public Protection from 2003-2006.

She is recognized throughout the country for her deep knowledge of the CWA, and has recently spoken to groups of CWA lawyers, regulators and practitioners at conferences including the American Bar Association’s Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources 30th Fall Conference in Nashville, TN, the Association of Clean Water Administrators annual conference in Memphis, and the Indiana Water Environment Association‘s annual conference in Indianapolis.

Following today’s festivities, LaJuana will be a speaker on a panel for the federal EPA Alumni Association’s CWA 50th anniversary two hour webinar.

About 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 the EPA from 1989 to 1993. She has counseled multinational corporations on strategic, policy, legislation and litigation matters. She has served 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.