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Byron R. Brown

Senior Counsel
Phone: +1 202.624.2546
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20004-2595

Byron R. Brown is a senior counsel in the Washington D.C. office. He is in the firm’s Environment & Natural Resources and Government Affairs groups. Byron has 17 years of executive and legislative branch experience advising on environmental policy, administrative law, and congressional relations. Most recently, Byron served as deputy chief of staff for policy at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and he previously served in policy and legal roles with the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW Committee), the House Committee on Natural Resources and, earlier in his career, in the EPA Office of General Counsel.

During his career, Byron has worked on rulemaking, legislation, and litigation involving all major environment and natural resources laws, including the Clean Air Act, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Freedom of Information Act, Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, and the Clean Water Act. As EPA’s deputy chief of staff for policy, Byron led EPA’s involvement in the executive branch’s infrastructure initiative and represented EPA on the Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council, which was established under Title 41 of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act of 2015 to streamline the environmental review and permitting process for major infrastructure projects. Byron also served on EPA’s Regulatory Reform Task Force, developed proposals for reforming the Superfund program, and coordinated several rulemakings affecting the electric power, mining, retail, and chemical sectors. He frequently represented the EPA administrator in meetings at the Justice Department on civil litigation and enforcement matters and with industry groups and other stakeholders on regulatory reform proposals.

As senior counsel for the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, Byron oversaw all legislative matters involving CERCLA, RCRA, Brownfields reauthorization, mining, waste-to-energy, and recycling. Byron was the lead majority staffer who drafted and negotiated legislation to regulate the disposal of coal combustion residuals by power plants. This legislation was included in the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act, which was enacted into law in 2016. Byron also served as the EPW Committee’s lead oversight counsel, responsible for conducting investigations and hearings into the executive branch’s climate change policies, Waters of the U.S. rulemaking, Endangered Species Act, and Gold King Mine blowout, among other matters. Byron also served as senior counsel and director of oversight and investigations for the House Committee on Natural Resources, where he oversaw multiple investigations and hearings into the executive branch’s 2010 offshore drilling moratorium, the ethics program at the Department of the Interior, enforcement of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and scientific integrity at the Fish and Wildlife Service. Byron also served as a legislative fellow in the personal office of Sen. Dianne Feinstein, working on legislation to amend the Toxic Substances Control Act, and policy issues involving climate change, energy efficiency, renewable energy financing, and endangered species.

Earlier in his career, Byron served for more than a decade as a career attorney in the EPA Office of General Counsel, including as senior attorney in the Air and Radiation Law Office working on litigation and rulemakings under the Clean Air Act, as assistant general counsel for information law managing litigation, counseling, and administrative claims arising under the Freedom of Information Act, the Federal Records Act, the Privacy Act, and the Trade Secrets Act, and as an associate deputy general counsel with responsibilities overseeing issues involving the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, CERCLA, RCRA, the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, as well as congressional, inspector general, and Government Accountability Office investigations and oversight.


  • University of Iowa College of Law, J.D.
  • University of Iowa School of Journalism and Mass Communications, M.A.
  • University of New Hampshire, B.A., cum laude


Admitted to practice: District of Columbia, Massachusetts

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"Partisan Overtones Dominate Senate Confirmation Hearing for CPSC Chair Nominee Dr. Nancy Beck," Crowell & Moring's Retail & Consumer Products Law Observer (June 17, 2020). Authors: Matthew Cohen and Byron R. Brown.
"Preparing for COVID Investigation and Enforcement," Government Contracts Bullet Points (May 4, 2020). Contacts: Rebecca Monck Ricigliano, Byron R. Brown, Tiffany Wynn
Client Alert / Newsletter
"President Declares Threat to Electric Power Grid a National Emergency," Government Contracts Bullet Points (May 4, 2020). Contacts: Alan W. H. Gourley, Larry F. Eisenstat, Caroline E. Brown, Robert Holleyman, Deborah A. Carpentier, Byron R. Brown
Client Alert / Newsletter
"The CARES Act And Lessons From The Past: What Prior Investigative Responses To Crises Tell Us About The Future," Westlaw (April 27, 2020). Authors Rebecca M. Ricigliano, David B. Robbins, Byron R. Brown, and Tiffany Wynn.
"EPA Considers Updating Federal Procurement Guidelines for Recycled Content," Environment & Natural Resources Law Alert (April 16, 2020). Contacts: Robert A. Burton, Elliott P. Laws, Byron R. Brown, Jennifer A. Giblin
Client Alert / Newsletter
"Managing Environmental Compliance and Exposure to Liability During the Coronavirus Crisis," Crowell & Moring Webinar (April 8, 2020). Presenters: David Chung, Peter Gray, Robert Meyers, Kirsten L. Nathanson, Byron R. Brown, and Paul Freeman.
"EPA Issues Policy On Conditions For Enforcement Discretion During the Coronavirus Crisis," (March 27, 2020). Contacts: David Chung, Peter Gray, Warren Lehrenbaum, Thomas A. Lorenzen, Robert Meyers, Kirsten L. Nathanson, Byron R. Brown, Paul Freeman, Jennifer A. Giblin, Leland P. Frost
Client Alert / Newsletter
"Agencies, Plaintiffs Target Ethylene Oxide," Mass Tort, Product, and Consumer Litigation Alert (March 19, 2020). Contacts: Peter C. Condron, Andrew D. Kaplan, Byron R. Brown
Client Alert / Newsletter
Enviro Attorneys Pivot To Clients' Coronavirus Concerns Law360 (March 19, 2020)
Media Mentions
"How Environmental NGOs Are Targeting Plastic Pollution," Law360 (March 2, 2020). Authors: David Chung, Kirsten L. Nathanson, Byron R. Brown, and Elizabeth B. Dawson.

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