VCPC Trip to the General Assembly Highlights the Importance of Making Connections

VCPC students pictured at the offices of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation with CBF attorney Peggy Sanner: (from left to right) Howl Bean, Trace Hall, Nate Flanders, Eric Jabs, Hannah Needleman, Susan Vermillion, Lauren Coleman, Matthew Hubbard, Rosemary Hambright; and former student Ben Willis, now externing at CBF.

When Eric Jabs spent a weekend at his home in Virginia Beach, he was reminded that state legislators not only work on behalf of our communities, but also have lives in the communities they represent. As Eric walked out of the locker room of his local rec center after a swim workout, he met Senator Frank Wagner. “State legislature is a much smaller world than people realize…that’s why relationships are so important in this field,” says Virginia Coastal Policy Clinic (VCPC) Director Roy A. Hoagland, who has over twenty years of experience practicing environmental law. Just a week prior, Eric, a VCPC student, met with a former Virginia state delegate and representatives of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Virginia League of Conservation Voters, and Chesapeake Bay Commission while visiting the General Assembly. The students then … [Read more...]

Melanie Davenport, Head of the DEQ Water Division

Melanie Davenport speaking with the VCPC students.

  The head of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Water Division, Melanie Davenport, returned to William & Mary Law School on February 12. On this snowy day, she joked that she chose William & Mary for law school after completing her undergraduate studies at Boston University because she “was sick and tired of the cold and snow” in New England. However, Davenport braved the wintry weather to come speak to the Virginia Coastal Policy Clinic about her career. Davenport has been the head of the DEQ’s Water Division since spring 2011, but her career path has been anything but predictable. “I haven’t been in court since the day I was sworn into the Bar,” says Davenport. She holds a bachelor’s degree in marine biology, and as an undergraduate participated in a … [Read more...]

Ann Swanson, Executive Director of the Chesapeake Bay Commission

Ann Swanson speaking at William & Mary Law School.

In the 1960s and 70s, Ann Swanson says the critical state of the Chesapeake Bay was clearly visible. Swanson, the Executive Director of the Chesapeake Bay Commission, visited the Virginia Coastal Policy Clinic (VCPC) and the Student Environmental and Animal Law Society at William & Mary Law School as a guest speaker on February 5. Although Swanson is a native of Long Island, she has worked on issues in the Chesapeake Bay watershed for over 30 years. She argues that the Chesapeake Bay is an incredible national resource even when compared with Long Island Sound, which “used to ship oysters back to the Queen.” The Bay is also incredibly vulnerable to environmental changes and human use because of its expansive watershed. Reflecting on a frequent occurrence of several decades ago, Swanson described a “jubilee” of blue … [Read more...]

Conservation Dialogues: Attorney General’s Office

Deputy Attorney General Daniel and Senior Assistant Attorney General Rhode speak at the first Conservation Dialogues

On Wednesday, January 28, the Virginia Coastal Policy Clinic (VCPC) and the Student Environmental and Animal Law Society collaborated to invite Deputy Attorney General John Daniel and Senior Assistant Attorney General Lynne Rhode for the first of a series of Conservation Dialogues. This series will be held the last Wednesday of every month through April at the William & Mary Law School. Here’s what some attendees had to say about the experience: "Deputy Attorney General Daniel has a uniquely deep understanding of, and history with, coastal policy issues in Virginia, having been the first Secretary of Natural Resources, an advisor to numerous Governors, and a private practice attorney for several prominent law firms.  His interest in sharing this history with William & Mary law students, and seeking their perspectives on … [Read more...]

Follow us on Facebook!