Welcome from the Chair
To be entrusted with the leadership of the Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (“SEER”) is a high honor and I accept this position with a commitment to serve and represent our members to the best of my ability.
I have five themes for the Section year that I would like to share, all of which have one overriding objective – improving SEER’s service and value to you, our members.
Elevate content development and delivery for SEER members
As the “premier forum” for environment, energy, and resources legal issues, the primary benefit that we can provide you, as Section members, is content—reliably accurate and timely information and analysis that is useful for practicing law in our areas of expertise.
As you know, this content is communicated through multiple outlets. We have educational programs including in-person conferences, webinars, and teleconferences and publications including Natural Resources & Environment, Trends, The Year in Review, and SEER books.
SEER also conveys information through its substantive committees through their webpages, newsletters, list serves, LinkedIn groups, and committee calls. In addition, SEER is developing exciting new sources of web-based content such as the Transition of Administrations Tracker, WOTUS and the Reach of CWA Jurisdiction webpage, TSCA Reform webpage, podcasts, and private LinkedIn groups.
I encourage all of you, as Section members, to take advantage of the high-quality content that has been produced for your use. If you haven’t bookmarked the Section’s website, please take a moment to do so. If you aren’t a member of at least one SEER committee, consider becoming a committee member. And I hope that you will attend the Fall Conference in Baltimore on October 18–21 to hear and meet experts in our practice areas. Be better prepared for your practice by accessing the “premier content” that SEER offers!
We are seeking to “elevate” the production of SEER’s content this year by generating a greater amount of meaningful content on a more timely basis. We do not seek to compete with the provision by news organizations’ of “instantaneous information.” Our “brand” is to provide our members useful and reliable information and analysis of relevant legal issues. Yet, we do need to—and are—continually improving our “development and delivery” systems. SEER members will get more “bang for their buck” through these innovations.
Ensure diversity of perspectives in SEER programming and publications
SEER is committed to providing different viewpoints on environment, energy, and resources issues so that our members will have a comprehensive understanding of these issues. This is particularly important in our current times as a new administration introduces its priorities and initiatives in our practice areas that are quite different from its predecessor. We will continue to maintain an open-handed invitation for multiple perspectives to be heard on the key topics that are of interest to all SEER members.
Expand collaboration within the Section and beyond
We have been actively engaging with other entities on important issues that we share. A few examples are:
- Reciprocal liaison relationships with ABA entities and other organizations, including the ABA Young Lawyers Division and the Law Student Division and the Air & Waste Management Association;
- Active participation by 15 ABA Sections, Division and Forums (SDFs) in our Section’s SDF Coordination Special Committee projects for joint development of program panels, webinars, and newsletters; and
- Internationally, a closer interaction with the Canadian Bar Association’s National Environment, Energy and Resources Law Section (NEERLS) and the United Kingdom Environmental Law Association (UKLEA)—this fall, the chair of NEERLS will speak at our Fall Conference and I will speak at the NEERLS Justice Day Conference.
The goal of this collaboration is to expand and sharpen the relevant perspectives on issues that are important for our members.
Enjoy your SEER membership
SEER certainly provides the critical content that we all need for our law practices, but a key Section membership benefit that should also not be missed is the enjoyment of having a good time with current and new colleagues on a national scale. I hope that you will sign up for the Baltimore Fall Conference’s “Taste of SEER” dine-around events, as well as the conference committee dinners, and public service project. Come to Baltimore and have fun, food, and fellowship with us! See you there!
John E. Milner
2017-2018 Section Chair