Nixon Peabody’s San Francisco office grows with addition of veteran environmental counsel

October 13, 2020

Media Relations Manager
Courtney DeMesme-Anders

San Francisco, CA. Nixon Peabody is pleased to announce Leah Goldberg has joined its San Francisco office as counsel in the firm’s Affordable Housing and Real Estate practice group. Leah’s practice runs the gamut of environmental, land use, real estate, sustainability, and energy matters with a passion for the reuse and redevelopment of contaminated properties.

“The San Francisco Bay Area has a culture built upon innovation and community, which is seen in every type of business that we work with—from startups and iconic brands to health care leaders and organizations that are helping to shape an environmentally sustainable future,” said Karen Ng, managing partner of Nixon Peabody’s San Francisco office. “As we continue to grow and serve as a partner to our clients in moving their businesses forward, I am excited to welcome Leah to our great team of diverse colleagues in San Francisco.”

Leah will collaborate with San Francisco Environmental partner, Alison Torbitt, expanding Nixon Peabody’s multi-state Environmental and Land Use Team to guide public and private clients through federal and state environmental laws, land use matters, and brightfields—the siting of renewable energy projects on contaminated property. Such projects could involve the Superfund and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), site cleanup and associated liability issues, underground storage tank cleanup, storm water compliance, National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits, Clean Water Act citizen issues, defense against Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) enforcement, and compliance with both the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and Coastal Act.

“At a time when many environmental issues—and their impact on development—are front and center, we see an ever-growing demand to help our clients understand and navigate these complex, nuanced matters,” said Denise Pursley, leader of Nixon Peabody’s Affordable Housing and Real Estate practice group. “Leah is a wonderful addition to our group, and we are excited to welcome her to the firm.”

Drawing from her 30 years of experience, Leah seeks win-win solutions for her clients, utilizing the brownfields tools to reuse contaminated properties to help address California’s housing crisis through conversion of industrial land to much needed housing. She has been active on several California state legislative issues, including AB 440, known as the Gatto Act, for which she was instrumental in the drafting and passing of the bill. In addition, Leah and Alison have served together on the Bar Association of San Francisco’s Environmental Law Section Executive Committee for several years, including Leah’s term as chair and Alison’s current term as treasurer.

“I am excited to join Nixon Peabody’s incredibly talented and innovative group of colleagues,” Leah said. “Climate change is and will impact the goods and services our clients provide, and our firm’s depth of knowledge, size, and reputation are ideally suited to help clients do impactful work and grow their businesses and organizations.”

In addition to Leah’s leadership on the Bar Association of San Francisco’s Environmental Law Section Executive Committee, Leah has leadership roles on the CEB Real Estate Law Advisory Group and as an advisor to the California Lawyers Association’s Environmental Law Section Executive Committee, where she co-chairs the Legislative Committee. Leah earned her J.D. from the University of California Hastings College of the Law, where she was a Tony Patiňo Fellow.

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