Vermont Law and Graduate School Alumnus Honored for Environmental Lawyering
Following in the footsteps of his longtime mentor Pat Parenteau, Vermont Law and Graduate School alumnus William “Bill” Eubanks, II, has been named this year’s recipient of the prestigious Kerry Rydberg-Jack Tuholske Award. He was honored on Saturday, March 4, during the 41st annual Public Interest Environmental Law Conference in Eugene, Oregon.
Presented each year to a lawyer who exemplifies the best in public interest environmental advocacy, the award is named for the late Kerry Rydberg, who dedicated himself to fighting on behalf of grassroots environmental groups in the late 1980s before being killed in a car accident, cutting short an already strong legacy.
Newly added to the award name is Jack Tuholske, former VLGS faculty who was honored in 2010. A leading public interest environmental lawyer, Tuholske inspired an entire generation of environmental lawyers and his brilliance in the courtroom left a legacy of protection for the wildlands he loved. Tuholske passed away in 2020.
“Joining this distinguished group of awardees—which includes my most esteemed mentors and other leaders who have inspired and guided me—is an incredible honor,” Eubanks said. “I am grateful for the colleagues and friends I have formed in our collective work, and I remain committed to leaving this planet, its people, and its wildlife in a better place than I found them at the start of my career. We owe it to my daughters and their generation to use the law as a tool today for a brighter future tomorrow.”
Eubanks, a 2008 VLGS graduate, is owner and managing attorney of Eubanks & Associates, PLLC, in Washington, D.C. He received his Master of Laws in environmental law from the school, graduating summa cum laude. He was awarded Law360’s Environmental Law Rising Star Award in 2019 and shapes future law leaders by teaching courses at VLGS, where he has served as a member of the school’s summer faculty, and other institutions.
His firm’s cases have included fighting to protect national parks and forests, wildlife and biodiversity, oceans and rivers, and many other sensitive natural resources. The firm often handles issues of first impression that present opportunities to set important legal precedents and shape the application of environmental laws for decades to come.
“We congratulate Bill on this incredible honor and thank him for imprinting on the world what VLGS hopes for all of our students — a strong character who fights for what is right and who isn’t afraid to take on state and federal agencies in order to do it,” VLGS President Rod Smolla said. “He is an example of what the world needs, and we are excited to watch him continue to be a catalyst for change.
About Vermont Law and Graduate School: Vermont Law and Graduate School, a private, independent institution, is home to the nation’s premier environmental law program. The school features innovative experiential programs and is home to the Environmental Law Center, South Royalton Legal Clinic, Environmental Advocacy Clinic, Energy Clinic, Food and Agriculture Clinic, Environmental Justice Clinic, and Center for Justice Reform. For more information, visit www.vermontlaw.edu and follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.