A nationally recognized environmental lawyer with a distinguished career at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Washington, D.C., David joined Preti Flaherty in 1991 and became chair of the firm's Environmental Practice Group in 1995. After growing that practice for 25 years, David served as Managing Partner from 2020 through mid-2024, and has now returned to Chair the Firm's thriving environmental practice.

He is an active participant in all aspects of the firm's environmental practice, including litigation, compliance counseling, liability allocations, environmental audits, defense of enforcement actions, project permitting, due diligence in business and lending transactions and environmental risk management. In addition, David has had a significant hand in the development of the Firm's robust renewable energy practice.

David also has testified in U.S. District Court as an expert witness related to EPA policy and procedures and managed CERCLA liability allocation efforts at several significant Superfund sites.

EPA Experience
David represented the EPA at the negotiating table and participated at the highest levels of the agency's compliance and policy-making efforts. He now offers clients a unique, insider's view of Federal environmental law based on his extensive EPA experiences:

  • As Acting Associate Enforcement Counsel for Superfund and, prior to that, as Deputy Associate Enforcement Counsel for Hazardous Waste, David managed the nationwide implementation of the EPA's civil judicial enforcement programs under CERCLA and RCRA.
  • As Chair of the CERCLA Lender Liability Rule Task Force, David supervised the development of the agency's lender liability rule and the issuance of the agency's first prospective purchaser guidance, approving the initial brownfields-type settlements. Upon joining Preti Flaherty, David was instrumental in the passage of Maine legislation creating liability protections for lenders and establishing Maine's brownfield VRAP program.
  • As the EPA's lead headquarters attorney litigating the precedent-setting U.S. v. Conservation Chemical Superfund cleanup case, involving more than 200 defendants and third-party defendants, David pushed the case to a successful conclusion. The case was one of the first to be litigated under Superfund.
  • David's awards while at the EPA included the Department of Justice Commendation for Outstanding Service; the Assistant Administrator's Enforcement Award for Excellence; a Silver Medal; two Bronze Medals; and numerous Superior Performance and Outstanding Achievement Awards.

Prior to joining the EPA, David was a legal policy analyst for Booz-Allen and Hamilton, Inc., in Washington, D.C., where he helped develop policy on civil judicial and administrative enforcement for the EPA's hazardous waste programs. He also worked for Environmental Research and Technology in Washington as a legislative and policy analyst, focusing on legislative initiatives under the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act.

Professional Activities

  • New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission
    • Commissioner, 2013-Present
  • Maine State Bar Association
    • Member, Environmental and Energy Law Section
  • American Bar Association
    • Member, Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources 
  • Cumberland County Bar Association

Honors & Recognition

  • Chambers USA, Band 1 Environment Lawyer, 2006-Present
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America 2005-Present
    • 2020 Lawyer of the Year, Environmental Law
  • Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent™ Peer Review Rating, 2004-Present
  • Listed in New England Super Lawyers
  • Listed in Lawdragon 500 Leading U.S. Environmental & Energy Lawyers, 2021
  • Listed in Lawdragon Green 500: Leaders in Environmental Law, 2023 & 2024
  • Fellow and member of Board of Regents – American College of Environmental Lawyers
  • Fellow – American Bar Foundation; Maine Bar Foundation

Civic and Charitable Activities

  • Maine Adaptive Sports and Recreation
    • President and Chair of Board, 2014-2016
    • General Counsel, 2018-Present
    • Executive Committee, 2005-2010, 2012-2014, 2016-2018
    • Vice President, 2005-2010, 2012-2014
    • Board Member, 1999-2018
    • Board Governance Committee, 2007-2018
    • Volunteer/Fundraiser, 1991-Present
  • Royal River Conservation Trust
  • Royal River Recreation Authority, Development Task Force
  • Volunteer Lawyers Project
  • Soccer Maine Licensed Soccer Coach
  • U.S. Youth Soccer Association Certified Referee
  • Leadership Maine, Mu Class, Maine Development Foundation
  • Maine State Chamber of Commerce, Environment and Energy Committee Member