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James D. Brusslan

Senior Counsel

James Brusslan leads the firm's Environmental Law practice. He has more than 25 years of experience representing corporate clients, government bodies, and citizens in complex environmental litigation and counseling matters. James has won significant environmental cases in federal courts, was counsel of record in a case before the U.S. Supreme Court, and has filed suits under virtually all environmental laws.

With his extensive litigation background, James assists clients in their transactional matters by recognizing how their everyday decisions regarding environmental issues will play out in the courtroom, if necessary in the future.  As a former attorney with the United States Environmental Protection Agency, James has the knowledge to help clients efficiently address environmental matters with government bodies.

James is one of the first Illinois attorneys to become a LEED® Accredited Professional (AP), and has experience counseling real estate clients seeking to design, construct or renovate buildings using green or sustainable business practices.

James has written several articles published in BNA’s Environment Reporter, as well as the Illinois Bar Journal, Bloomberg’s Law Reports, ExecSense and Nation’s Cities Weekly. He regularly speaks before groups such as the American Bar Association and Northwestern University School of Law on environmental citizen suits and a variety of other environmental issues.

James Brusslan Headshot

Additional Information

Education & Admissions

  • Tufts University, B.A., cum laude, Biology, Psychology
  • University of California at Los Angeles School of Law, J.D.
Bar Admissions
  • Illinois
Court Admissions
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana
  • U.S. District Court, District Court of Minnesota
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court


  • Trillium Foundation, Board Member


  • AV Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Illinois Super Lawyers, 2005, 2014-2018


  • If you weren’t an attorney, what would you be?
    A high-altitude physiologist, accompanying climbers on mountain expeditions.

  • What is your favorite way to spend your commuting time?
    I spin my wheels and think about how to avoid cars while riding my bike to work.

  • What was your very first job?
    I worked at an art gallery and held up pieces on stage during auctions.

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