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In Memory of Water Hero, William (Bill) Rogers

CELP’s board and staff are saddened by the passing of another Water Hero, Professor Bill Rodgers, and extend our condolences to all his family and friends.

Recognized as a founder and one of the leading figures in U.S.Environmental Law, Professor Rodgers’work shaped the landscape that has allowed CELP to do our work.  As an eyewitness to history, he participated in writing the nation’s environmental laws that ushered in the “environmental revolution” of the 1960’s and 70’s. His four-volume treatise and hornbook on environmental law remain the foundational texts for law schools nationwide. He has educated thousands of passionate advocates for the environment.

To mark his immense contribution to Environmental Law, the University of Washington named him its first Stimson Bullitt Professor of Environmental Law. His work had immense impacts on water resource issues in Washington State; he was a lawyer and witness in the “smelter cases,” including the arsenic pollution of Tacoma and Puget Sound, and has represented Indian tribes and activists on numerous occasions. Professor Rodgers worked with attorneys, including UW law professor Ralph Johnson, to protect Indian fishing rights (the Boldt decision), annd represented the Puyallup Tribe’s treaty rights to salmon.

The Center for Environmental Law & Policy honored Professor Rodgers with a Water Hero  Award in 2016, recognizing and celebrating a lifetime of achievement in protecting the environment and the public’s waters. CELP co-founder Rachel Paschal Osborn conducted an interview with Rogers in advance of CELP’s Celebrate Water! event held in June, 2016. You can read the interview here, as well as other resources about his distinguished career.

Read his obituary here

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