Bob Lawrence has practiced environmental law for over 29 years, and has extensive experience in environmental litigation and administrative proceedings, permitting, compliance, enforcement matters, and environmental issues arising in transactions. Mr. Lawrence began his legal career as an intern and law clerk for the Environment Defense Fund and the National Wildlife Federation, where he worked on water quality standards, National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permitting, and uranium mining and milling issues. He then served as an Assistant Regional Counsel in EPA Region 8 for three years and was the lead lawyer at EPA responsible for six Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) Natural Resource Damages (NRD) cases, CERCLA response actions at numerous mining and milling sites, including uranium sites, and the Rocky Flats and Rocky Mountain Arsenal.
Mr. Lawrence has been in private practice since 1987, focusing on toxic tort, cost recovery, contribution, citizen suit and NRD litigation, compliance, permitting, and enforcement under federal and state regulatory programs (especially hazardous waste, Clean Water Act (CWA) § 404, and stormwater matters), Superfund cleanups, and all aspects of environmental law in Indian Country. He has taken a major CERCLA NRD case through a multi-month trial, and achieved favorable resolutions and settlements for his clients in several other NRD cases. Mr. Lawrence led a team of lawyers to favorable verdict for his client in a class action toxic tort jury trial at a large vapor intrusion site. His client prevailed in another major class action toxic tort lawsuit at a mining site in the Pacific Northwest. Mr. Lawrence tried a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) criminal case in federal court in Colorado which resulted in acquittal of his corporate client on all charges. He has represented clients with respect to claims against the federal and state governments as defendants under CERCLA and various common law theories. Recently, Mr. Lawrence successfully defended two separate corporate clients against environmental citizen suit claims, and resolved a major Clean Water Act § 404 mitigation and penalty case in federal court in Nevada.
Mr. Lawrence continues to work on uranium exploration, mining and milling matters, CWA stormwater and 404 permitting and compliance issues, and creative solutions to environmental considerations in real estate and corporate transactions. He has represented clients on numerous matters involving environmental claims asserted by Indian tribes. Mr. Lawrence spoke in January 2009 at the University of Colorado Law School on Religious Freedom Restoration Act, National Historic Preservation Act, and First Amendment claims and in June 2011 at the Environmental Law on Indian Lands Conference in New Mexico.
Mr. Lawrence is a founding regent and member of the American College of Environmental Lawyers. He has been named in The Best Lawyers in America® since 1995, and was also selected by The International Who’s Who of Environment Lawyers and the Denver Business Journal as one of the best lawyers for environmental work. He has been listed as a leading lawyer in Colorado and as a “Band One” leading individual in Environmental Law in Chambers USA for many years.
He has been selected for inclusion for many years in Colorado Super Lawyers by Thompson Reuters, and is named as a Leading Lawyer in Environmental and Energy – North America by Lawyers World. Mr. Lawrence has also earned an AV Preeminent® Peer Review RatingTM from Martindale-Hubbell®. He is a member of the Natural Resources, Energy and Environmental Law Section of the American Bar Association. In addition, he is on the Board of Advisors of the Toxics Law Reporter. Mr. Lawrence is also a member of the 2013 Law360 Environmental editorial advisory board. He is on the Board of the University of Colorado Law School Alumni Association and the Colorado Legal Aid Foundation, and is active in pro bono service.
University of Colorado, J.D., 1983
Colorado College, B.A., 1977
Forty-six Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP attorneys have been recognized as 2013 Colorado Super Lawyers or Rising Stars, which is published by Thomson Reuters. The listing will be featured in The Denver Post on March 31 and in the April issues of 5280 Magazine and Colorado Super Lawyers.
Forty-five DGS attorneys were named Best Lawyers® by publisher Woodward/White, Inc. in its annual guide recognizing legal excellence.
Twenty-one Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP lawyers have been designated "Super Lawyers" in the 2012 Super Lawyers Business Edition published by Thomson Reuters.
When one door closes, another door opens – or so the saying goes. Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court closed the door on the question of whether compliance orders issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under Section 309 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) are "final agency action" under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) subject to pre-enforcement judicial review.
The 2012 edition of the Chambers USA ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment. Chambers USA also recognized DGS for its strong Commercial Litigation and Labor & Employment practices.
40 Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP attorneys have been recognized as 2012 Colorado Super Lawyers or Rising Stars, which is published by Thomson Reuters. The listing will be featured in the April issues of 5280 Magazine and Colorado Super Lawyers.
Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP announces that 20 lawyers have been designated "Super Lawyers" in the new Super Lawyers Business Edition published by Thomson Reuters. The publication will be sent in September to more than 40,000 in-house counsel, presidents, and CEOs of Fortune 1000 companies.
Thirty-eight DGS attorneys, including nearly half of the firm’s partners, were named Best Lawyers® by publisher Woodward/White, Inc. in its annual guide to legal excellence. The 2012 edition of The Best Lawyers in America is based on a peer-review survey in which more than 39,000 leading attorneys comment on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas. Corporate Counsel magazine has called Best Lawyers® “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.”
Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP announces John R. Jacus and Robert W. Lawrence have been named among the International Who's Who of Environmental Lawyers. "Since 1996, Who's Who Legal has identified the foremost legal practitioners in 31 areas of business law," according to publisher Law Business Research Ltd. "We feature over 10,000 of the world's leading lawyers in over 100 countries."
The 2011 edition of the Chambers USA ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of corporate law, including mergers and acquisitions, and natural resources and environmental law, which consists of the traditional and renewable energy sectors as well as the mining industry. Chambers USA also recognized DGS for its strong general commercial and labor and employment litigation practices.
After much controversy and pressure from members of Congress and stakeholders, EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers have formally released their proposed "EPA and Army Corps of Engineers Guidance Regarding Identification of Waters Protected by the Clean Water Act." The Proposed Guidance substantially increases the number of waters that will be subject to jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act.
The newly announced, 2011 edition of the Best Lawyers in America ranks Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado-based law practices for corporate governance and compliance law, environmental law, mergers and acquisitions law, natural resources law, oil and gas law and securities law. This year Best Lawyers recognizes 36 DGS attorneys, including 13 who have been named to the list for at least 10 years. Nearly half (46 percent) of DGS partners are recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence, in addition to several attorneys of counsel to the firm. Best Lawyers is a peer-review survey of more than 39,000 in-house counsels and private practice attorneys.
The 2010 edition of the Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business today ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of corporate law, including mergers and acquisitions, and natural resources and environmental law, which includes the traditional and renewable energy sectors and the mining industry. Chambers also recognized DGS for its strong general commercial and employment litigation practices.
Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP announce the selection of two new partners to the firm and the re-election of Chris Richardson to serve an additional two-year term as the firm’s managing partner, following a firm-wide partners vote. Each appointment is effective January 1, 2010.
The 2010 edition of the Best Lawyers in America ranks Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado-based attorneys practicing in the areas of commercial litigation, corporate governance and compliance law, environmental law, natural resources law, oil & gas law and securities law.
Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP has been recognized again in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the areas of Environmental, Corporate/M&A, Labor & Employment and Commercial Litigation.
The United States Supreme Court has been asked to, and may soon, provide guidance on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act ("RFRA"). RFRA prohibits government action that "substantially burdens" the exercise of religion if the government cannot establish that its actions are the least restrictive means to further a compelling interest.
Bob Lawrence was one of the panelists for a special evening program held at the CU Law School on January 21, 2009, "Public Lands-Private Ceremonies: Native American Religious Practices and Public Lands in the West."
University of Colorado School of Law and Center of the American West
Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP, with 31 attorneys practicing in 30 fields, ranks first in Colorado in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyers in America for the practice areas of corporate and securities law and commercial litigation as well as energy, environmental, natural resources and oil and gas law. The number of DGS lawyers recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence increased by two, and includes nearly half of the firm’s partners.
Davis Graham & Stubbs – with 29 attorneys practicing in 30 fields – ranks first in Colorado-based attorneys listed in the 2008 edition of Best Lawyers in America for the practice areas of commercial litigation, natural resources, environmental law and corporate governance and compliance law. The number of DGS lawyers recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence increased by three, and includes half of the firm’s partners. The book, targeted for in-house counsel, is to be published in December 2007.
Davis Graham & Stubbs ranked in the top tier of Colorado business law firms in the fields of Commercial Litigation and Environmental Law in the just-released 2007 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. DGS was also recognized in the fields of corporate mergers and acquisitions, labor and employment, and real estate.
Davis Graham & Stubbs partner Robert W. Lawrence was a featured speaker at the Industrial Minerals Technology Workshop on March 5-7 in St. Petersburg, Florida. This national conference was presented by the Industrial Minerals Association-North America for industrial minerals industry professionals, executives, consultants, and attorneys.
IMA - North America
ABA Environmental Enforcement and Crimes Committee Newsletter
Twenty-six Davis Graham & Stubbs attorneys practicing in 28 fields will be recognized in the 2007 edition of The Best Lawyers in America. The number of DGS lawyers recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence increased by five this year, and represents more than 40% of DGS partners overall. DGS ranks first in the number of Colorado-based attorneys listed by the 2007 edition of Best Lawyers in the Commercial Litigation, Natural Resources, Environmental Law, Securities Law and Corporate Governance and Compliance Law practice areas.
Davis Graham & Stubbs attorney Robert W. Lawrence has been chosen as one of only five Colorado lawyers listed in the Lawdragon 500 New Stars New Worlds, the newest list of 500 U.S. lawyers ranked by clients and peers. Lawrence is featured on the list as one of only two environmental attorneys ranked in Colorado. He joins fellow partner Judith M. Matlock, who was named one of the top-ranked energy attorneys in the U.S. in the inaugural issue, The Lawdragon 500: Leading Lawyers in America in October 2005. Lawdragon conducts independent research and online balloting, and interviews thousands of private and in-house lawyers to assemble the guide that reflects excellence in 80 practice areas.
Davis Graham & Stubbs lawyers Deborah Friedman and Tom McNamara were recently recognized by Who’s Who Legal as among the leading lawyers worldwide in their respective fields. Ms. Friedman was named in The International Who’s Who of Mining Lawyers 2006, and Mr. McNamara was selected for The International Who’s Who of Commercial Litigators 2006.
Superfund and Natural Resource Damages Litigation Committee Newsletter
“When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said in a rather scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean – neither more nor less.” “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.” From Through the Looking Glass, by Lewis Carroll. In the world of natural resource damages (NRDs), words can and do mean many things. Trustees and defendants continue to square off over the following two issues.
You represent a substantial corporate client that faces a large EPA civil penalty for alleged violations of environmental law. Despite your best negotiating and careful investigation of the facts, the EPA has demanded a penalty of approximately $1.1 million and your defenses are limited, at best. You have just suggested to the general counsel that the company consider a supplemental environmental project (SEP) as a component of possible settlement. You explain that an SEP is an environmentally beneficial project that a respondent may undertake in settlement of an action in partial mitigation of penalties, but which it is not otherwise legally required to perform.