The William W. Ellis Ohio Environmental Law Center began in 2003 out of a relationship forged between the Ohio Environmental Council (OEC) and Ohio Northern University and Capital University Law Schools. The OEC Law Clinic, as it was known in its infancy, provided law students with the opportunity to gain hands on experience in environmental law and real world education in conservation advocacy. These students worked as the legal research arm of OEC’s Clean Air, Clean Water, and Legislative Program Teams.
Today, the Ohio Environmental Law Center still prides itself on being the legal backbone of the OEC’s great policy work, and continues to educate tomorrow’s environmental lawyers. However, now, under the leadership of Director of Legal Affairs, Trent Dougherty, its staff attorneys, and Legal Advisor Peter Precario, the Law Center has: opened its doors to budding environmental lawyers from all of Ohio’s Law Schools; fought to protect the rights of Ohioans to have clean water, healthy air, and a greener energy future before the Public Utilities Commission, environmental Review Appeals Commission, Ohio Courts and at the Statehouse; and provide Ohioans with a place to turn for guidance and analysis of environmental and conservation issues.
The Ohio Environmental Law Center is named for the late William W. Ellis, partner at Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease in Columbus. Mr. Ellis was an accomplished corporate attorney, naturalist and botanist, and along with his wife Jane Ann, established the Crane Hollow Nature Preserve. His complete devotion to both the law and to ecology is the inspiration for all we do at the Ohio Environmental Law Center.