Michelle De Blasi is the executive director of the Arizona Energy Consortium and is a well-known environmental attorney. Her in-depth experience encompasses a wide range of environmental law areas with an emphasis on natural resources matters, including traditional and renewable energy project development, environmental permitting and compliance, and greenhouse gas emissions. (Photo by Mike Mertes, AZ Big Media)
Leading Valley attorney Michelle De Blasi opens her own practice
De Blasi brings decades of experience assisting clients obtain successful results with their environmental, natural resource and energy projects. She has led numerous large-scale, complex environmental remediation enforcement and brownfield cases, and has completed environmental compliance, due diligence and permitting for industrial facilities.
“I’m realizing my long-held dream to take the helm of my business by moving my client base into my own firm,” said De Blasi, who in the past gained local and national recognition with Valley law firms such as Fennemore Craig and Quarles & Brady. “With the ability to partner with many excellent legal colleagues, I am excited to be able to provide more efficient and focused legal services and strategic partnerships for my clients as an extension of their business team.
“I have been a champion of women throughout my career, particularly working mothers. I realized I couldn’t give advice to my daughters to follow their dreams without following mine,” she said.
De Blasi brings decades of government and “BigLaw” experience to her own firm to provide more effective client service. She is a speaker, author, event producer and the Executive Director of the Arizona Energy Consortium, a non-profit organization.
“I have had the opportunity to work with Michelle for nearly 20 years on large land- use-related cases, from power line siting to air-quality permitting,” said Karrin Taylor Robson, land-use expert and President and Founder of Arizona Strategies. “She is a consummate professional who instinctively knows how to solve her clients’ problems and achieve desired results. I am excited to watch as she builds on her tremendous career accomplishments with the establishment of her own firm.”
De Blasi focuses on business strategy by helping clients in a broad array of industries complete their projects from start to finish, overseeing all aspects of permitting, assessing business risks and meeting deadlines on time and on budget.
“Michelle is a consummate legal professional with an extensive network of corporate clients. It does not surprise me that her entrepreneurial spirit and talents have led her to the dream of guiding her own firm,” said Chris Camacho, President/CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council.
On the state and federal environmental regulatory levels, clients consistently rely on her knowledge of hazardous waste, air quality, water quality, environmental health and safety, real property due diligence, legacy uranium mining, utility regulation, natural resource damage issues, asbestos and underground storage tank regulation. De Blasi also assists her clients with developing and permitting traditional and renewable energy generation and powerline projects.
Just some of her additional representative experience includes:
• Advising real estate developers on endangered species and jurisdictional Waters of the U.S. issues for large property developments on private and federal lands;
• Assisting a Fortune 100 technology manufacturer with air quality and wastewater permitting for a $2 billion facility in Arizona;
• Advising a Native American tribe with drafting the nation’s first comprehensive Tribal Implementation Plan under the Clean Air Act as well as drafting its wastewater, pesticide, waste management and water quality regulatory programs.
“We’re excited to continue working with Michelle under her new firm to help resolve our clients’ environmental and energy legal issues. It’s terrific to see her continue her success as an environmental and energy leader in the community,” said Grady Gammage Jr., Founder of Gammage & Burnham, where De Blasi also previously worked.
De Blasi is active with numerous industry and community groups including Valley Partnership, the Arizona Technology Council and the Phoenix Parks Foundation, just to name a few.
Her honors are numerous as well: Best Lawyers in America, Environmental Law, Energy Law, 2013-2020; Chambers USA, Leading Lawyers for Business, 2011-2020; Outstanding Mentor, Arizona State University Program on Law & Sustainability Mentorship Initiative, 2017; 50 Most Influential Women in Business, AZ Business Magazine, 2013; and Top 25 Women in Business, Phoenix Business Journal, 2012.
“I’m grateful for all the incredible mentors throughout my career,” De Blasi said. “I’m thankful for the support I’ve received from so many influential leaders to forge this path and undertake this endeavor.”
A native of Colorado, De Blasi earned a B.S. in political science with a minor in biology/zoology from Arizona State University and a J.D., Law, Certificate of Emphasis in Environmental Law, from the University of Washington.
“Michelle has always been a trailblazer, especially by forming and leading the Arizona Energy Consortium,” said Sarah Strunk, Chair of the Board of Directors at Fennemore Craig. “We at Fennemore look forward to continuing our collaboration with Michelle in the future.”
For more information visit mdb-law.com.