Distinguished Professor of Law
B.S., University of Kansas
J.D., University of Kansas School of Law
LL.M., Pace University School of Law
James R. May is a Professor of Law, co-director of the Environmental Law Center, and Adjunct Professor of Graduate Engineering, at Widener University. He has been an academic, a clinic director, a founder and director of two environmental advocacy organizations, a founder and director of a program on marine policy, a federal litigator, and an environmental attorney. He has litigated 200+ public interest environmental claims at levels up to the U.S. Supreme Court. He is the author of two books, Principles of Constitutional Environmental Law, and Environmental Constitutionalism: Implications for Present and Future Generations (with Erin Daly, forthcoming), and more than 70 articles and book chapters relating to environmental and constitutional law.
May is a Fellow of the American College of Environmental Lawyers, and a Member of Faculty to the National Judicial College. May has served as a Council Member to the governing board of ABA Section on Environment, Energy and Resources, a founder and inaugural Chair of ABA SEER’s Task Force on Constitutional Law, a member of the Committee on Environmental Law to the IUCN, a founder, executive director, and president of the Mid-Atlantic Environmental Law Center and director of Widener Institute at the Macquarie University Environmental Law Centre in Sydney, Australia. He has received numerous awards, including the Nicholas A. Robinson Alumni Award from Pace University School of Law, and the Environmental Award from the Delaware Chapter of the Sierra Club. He has served on numerous faculty committees, and is co-Advisor of the Widener Law Review. He is licensed to practice law before the U.S. Supreme Court, numerous federal courts, and the States of Pennsylvania and Kansas (inactive).
May earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, where he was the Bowman Scholar; a J.D. from the University of Kansas, where he was a national moot court champion; and an LL.M. from Pace, where he was the Feldshuh Environmental Fellow and graduated first in his class. He lives in Wilmington, Delaware with his wife and two children.
Selected Recent Publications Books
- CONTEMPORARY PRINCIPLES IN CONSTITUTIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL LAW (James R. May ed., Envtl. L. Inst./ABA, forthcoming).
- & Wendy Carr, THROUGH THE AGENCY MAZE: A CITIZEN’S GUIDE TO FINDING INFORMATION IN THE MID-ATLANTIC (William Penn Foundation/Mid-Atlantic Env. L. Ctr. 2000).
- The Future of Constitutional and Natural Resources Law, in NATURAL RESOURCES LAW AND POLICY 124 – 160 (S. Bates and L. MacDonnell, eds., American Bar Association).
- The Intersection of Constitutional Law and Environmental Litigation, in ENVIRONMENTAL LITIGATION: LAW AND STRATEGY 359 – 395 (Cary R. Perlman ed., ABA 2009).
- Et al., Constitutional Law: 2009 Annual Report, in ENVIRONMENT, ENERGY, AND RESOURCES LAW: THE YEAR IN REVIEW 2008 349 (ABA Section of Envt., Energy & Resources 2010, forthcoming, co-author).
- Constitutional Law: 2008 Annual Report, in ENVIRONMENT, ENERGY, AND RESOURCES LAW: THE YEAR IN REVIEW 2008 (ABA Section of Envt., Energy & Resources 2009).
- Constitutional Law: 2007 Annual Report, in ENVIRONMENT, ENERGY, AND RESOURCES LAW: THE YEAR IN REVIEW 2008 (ABA Sec. of Envt., Energy & Resources 2008).
- Et al., Constitutional Law: 2006 Annual Report, in ENVIRONMENT, ENERGY, AND RESOURCES LAW: THE YEAR IN REVIEW 2008 (ABA Section of Envt., Energy & Resources 2005, co-author).
- Discharges From Historic Mining Properties: Asserting and Defending Citizen Suits Under the Clean Water Act, 50 ROCKY MT. MIN. L. INST. 23 (2004).
- Pacific Mutual Life Ins. Co. v. Haslip; Substantive Due Process Implications for Toxic Tort Practitioners Part II, 19 Prod. Safety & Liab. Rep. (BNA) 1293 (November 15, 1991); also in 6 Tox. L. Rep. (BNA) 912 (January 1, 1992).
- Pacific Mutual Life Ins. Co. v. Haslip; Substantive Due Process Implications for Toxic Tort Practitioners Part I, 19 Prod. Safety & Liab. Rep. (BNA) 1263 (November 8, 1991); also in 6 Tox. L. Rep. (BNA) 882 (December 18, 1992).
- & Erin Daly, Vindicating Constitutionally Entrenched Environmental Rights Around the Globe, 11 Oregon Rev. Int’l L. __ (2010).
- Not at All: Sustainability and the U.S. Supreme Court, 9 Sustain. Dev. L. & Pol’y, __ (2009).
- U.S. Supreme Court Environmental Cases 2008-2009: A Year Like No Other, 40 Env’t Rep. (BNA), No. 36, at 2154 (Sept. 11, 2009).
- & Clary, The Role of Science and Engineering in Water Pollution Control During the Past 100 Years, 100 American Inst. Chem. Engr. (2008).
- Of Happy Incidents, Climate, Federalism, and Preemption, 17 TEMP. POL. & CIV. RTS. L. REV. 465 (2008).
- Climate Change, Constitutional Consignment, and the Political Question Doctrine, Symposium: Global Climate Change: Integrating Environmental Justice into Policy, Regulation, and Litigation, 85 DENVER U. L. REV. 919 (2008).
- & Robert L. Glicksman, A Jurisprudence of Idealogy, 24 Envtl. Forum 22 (2007)
- U.S. Supreme Court Decisions: Review for 2006-2007 and Outlook, 38 Env’t Rep. (BNA), No. 34, at 1851 (Aug. 24, 2007).
- The North American Symposium on the Judiciary and Environmental Law: Constituting Fundamental Environmental Rights Worldwide, 23 PACE ENVTL. L. REV. 113 (2005/2006).
- The Availability of State Environmental Citizen Suits, 18 NAT. RESOURCES & ENV’T 53 (2004), reprinted in ENVIRONMENTAL LAW 439 (ALI-ABA Course of Study, Feb. 16-18, 2005).
- The Rise and Repose of Assimilation-Based Water Quality, Part I: TMDL Litigation, 34 Envtl. L. Rep. (Envtl. L. Inst.) 10247 (2004), reprinted in CLEAN WATER ACT: LAW AND REGULATION 255 (ALI-ABA Course of Study, Oct. 27-29, 2004), reprinted in 24 EPA Admin. L. Rep. 762 (2004).
- Now More Than Ever: Trends in Environmental Citizen Suits at 30, Environmental Citizen Suits at Thirtysomething: A Celebration & Summit Symposium, Part I, 10 WIDENER L. REV. 1 (2003), reprinted in ENVIRONMENTAL LAW 385 (ALI-ABA Course of Study, Feb. 16-18, 2005).