New York City Environmental Law Leadership Institute

Exploring Challenges, Promoting Leadership, Cultivating Solutions

The New York City Environmental Law Leadership Institute (NYCELLI), is an annual seminar for a select group of new environmental attorneys committed to leadership in the field and to making a positive contribution to the City's environment. The Institute is designed to inform, equip and inspire new attorneys to take on key roles in the work to improve the quality of New York's City's environment and the health of its residents. To that end, NYCELLI participants learn about the issues, history and trends in environmental law in New York City, connect with the City's network of environmental law practitioners, agencies and organizations and engage in collaborative dialogue to address the City's environmental challenges.

Participants explore the special physical, social and economic dynamics of the urban environment, the relationships between sources of law and jurisdictions and the potential for solving environmental problems through law and policy. In order to put the course material into context, and get a close-up view of the City's environmental landscape, the program complements the classroom experience with several tours of environmentally significant sites throughout the City. In order to provide an opportunity to demonstrate and develop leadership, participants are expected to develop a project aimed at improving the New York City environment including, but not limited to, scholarly writing, recommendations for legal reform, organizational development, issue/educational campaigns, and pro bono legal assistance to environmental organizations.

A maximum of 15 participants will be accepted, based on an open application process. The Institute will strive to have roughly equal numbers of participants from private, government and non-profit practice, with between 0 and 7 years of practice. Participants must have taken a survey course in environmental law during law school, or have at least two years experience working in the field of environmental law. Participants must also have a commitment to environmental law and leadership as demonstrated by academic work in the environmental field, such as university and/or law school course work, independent research, law review or other writings, current or previous professional work in the field of environmental law and/or environmental protection or volunteer involvement with and work for non-governmental environmental or conservation organizations.

The Institute meets biweekly, for eight meetings, on Thursday evenings from February to May each year. The course provides approximately 12 Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credits, which qualify as both Transitional CLE credits, required for attorneys in their first two years of practice, and as regular CLE credits, in the Areas of Professional Practice category.

The tuition for the program is $600 for private attorneys, $500 for government attorneys and $400 for non-profit attorneys. For those experiencing financial hardship, a hardship subsidy is available upon request to ensure that no qualified applicant is denied participation for inability to pay.

NYCELLI is sponsored by the Environmental Law Section of the New York State Bar Association, the Environmental Law Institute and the Environmental Law Committee of the New York City Bar Association, and CLE credits are provided by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, Region 2, Office of Regional Counsel.