Samuel Lee Lofland

Shareholder

emailslofland@rcalaw.com
phone602.440.4899
fax602.257.6999
Legal Secretary: Lisa Gefroh
emaillgefroh@rcalaw.com

Biography

Mr. Lofland joined the firm immediately after he graduated from the Sandra Day O’ Connor College of Law at Arizona State University where he received his J.D. and an Indian Legal Certificate.

He works with clients of all sizes, ranging from individuals to industry leaders in renewable and conventional energy, transmission, water development, and mining. He focuses on environmental permitting, compliance, due diligence, environmental and general commercial litigation, and regulatory compliance. He also works with individuals and business owners, providing ongoing general legal support, or “legal concierge” services, to help them grow and flourish in their respective industries.

Legal Concierge Services. Individuals, start-ups and small/medium-sized businesses often require legal support for their business operations, but are reticent to engage the services of a law firm. Mr. Lofland works with clients like these to provide whatever support they require, working within each clients’ budgetary goals, to help meet their legal needs within their respective industry spaces. In general, Mr. Lofland will provide services and support typically associated with a “general counsel,” which includes helping identify the best corporate structure, negotiating and drafting contracts tailored to the business, and providing general advice to ensure compliance with the regulatory and legal regimes facing that particular client.

Regulatory Compliance. Mr. Lofland provides businesses with comprehensive legal support to ensure compliance with the various regulatory requirements imposed by local, state, and federal agencies. As part of this practice, Mr. Lofland works with businesses to navigate ever-changing regulatory regimes and to avoid the cost of non-compliance. His representative experience includes helping clients and their teams across multiple industries to develop government regulations and legislation, participating in rulemaking proceedings and appeals, and representing clients in litigation/negotiations in response to compliance actions pursued by governmental agencies and watch-dog groups. 

Environmental Permitting, Compliance and Due Diligence. Mr. Lofland helps his clients acquire, maintain and defend federal, state, and local environmental permits involving air quality, water quality, and land use. His experience includes preparing and reviewing permit applications; negotiating permit terms with regulators; advocating on behalf of clients in permitting and enforcement proceedings; providing policy and compliance advice with respect to the National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”), Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), National Historic Preservation Act (“NHPA”), migratory bird issues, air quality, water quality, and advising on legislative and regulatory processes affecting environmental regulatory developments in the Southwest. Some recent examples of work include:

  • Securing a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility from the Arizona Corporation Commission for a multi-state electrical transmission project.
  • Providing support and helping ensure compliance with NEPA and other environmental laws with a multi-state electrical transmission project. This culminated in the issuance of a Record of Decision from the BLM on January 23, 2015.
  • Securing air quality permits for a coal mining operation.
  • Providing support and helping ensure compliance with NEPA and other environmental laws with a 300+ mile water pipeline.
  • Securing determinations from EPA and state agencies regarding discrete provisions and applicability of regulations under the Clean Air Act.
  • Providing support and helping ensure compliance with NEPA and other environmental laws with a land exchange between a private landowner and the BLM.
  • Working with technical experts and consultants in the development of reports and opinions regarding client issues and project proposals in order to integrate legal requirements and technical findings and opinions.
  • Providing legal opinions and environmental due diligence review in business and real property transactions for real estate lenders, sellers, and prospective purchasers.

Litigation. Mr. Lofland regularly appears before administrative agencies and in both federal and state courts and handles client needs at all stages of litigation including pre-litigation assessment and investigation, preparation of pleadings, discovery, motion practice, preliminary injunctive hearings, evidentiary hearings, trials, and appeals. In the area of water resources, his work has included water rights litigation, including stream adjudications. He has also represented and secured positive outcomes for clients before the Interior Board of Land Appeals in which environmental organizations have appealed the issuance of a right-of-way by the BLM. Likewise, he has represented clients in defending against state enforcement actions, both at the administrative and state court levels.

His work in the Litigation Practice Group involves representation of clients with their general commercial litigation issues, representation of lending and servicing institutions in consumer actions, and surety defense.

Federal Indian Law. Mr. Lofland is an enrolled tribal member of the Wyandotte Nation of Oklahoma, and he dedicated a significant portion of his law school studies to understanding the unique issues associated with Federal Indian Law. In connection with his environmental law and litigation work, he has worked on several issues involving Federal Indian Law. Some examples of work include:

  • Providing support in negotiating settlements between private developers and Indian Tribes, including efforts to have the settlement approved by Congress.
  • Representing clients in Tribal court in general commercial litigation matters.
  • Drafting protocols and client advisories for non-tribal business operations in “Indian Country.”
  • Providing support in land transfers of restricted and trust land.

Outside of the Firm. Mr. Lofland regularly provides pro bono services, volunteering with organizations like the Florence Immigrant Refugee Rights Project and the U.S. District Court of Arizona’s pro bono program.

He is originally from a small rural town, Scappoose, Oregon. Before going to law school, he spent a year working at Villanova Preparatory School as a residential life supervisor and substitute teacher. He attended Stanford University where he was a Division One wrestler and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology with Departmental Honors. He enjoys martial arts, wrestling and spending time with his family.

Publications

Speaking Engagements

  • "Without a Paddle: Navigating the Murky Waters of the Clean Water Act's Definition of 'Waters of the U.S.'," U.S. Society for Irrigation and Drainage Professionals' Water Management Conference, Co-Presenter, December 2014
  • "Use of 'Representative Data' in the Wake of Sierra Club v. E.P.A., 705 F.3d 458 (D.C. Cir. 2013)," Seventeenth Annual Energy, Utility & Environment Conference, February 2014
  • "Recent Happenings Regarding the Exceptional Event Rule," Sixteenth Annual Energy, Utility & Environment Conference, 2013
  • "Contracts II," Arizona Summit Law School (formerly Phoenix School of Law), Adjunct Professor, Spring Semester of the 2012-2013 Academic Year
  • "Myth of the Indian Wars," Arizona State University, Guest Lecturer, Fall 2010
  • "Protecting the Untouchable," Arizona State University Southwest Graduate English Symposium, 2008
  • "Who is an 'Indian'," Arizona State University Southwest Graduate English Symposium, 2008

Memberships

  • Phoenix Ivy Council, Past Board Member
  • Wyandotte Nation of Oklahoma, Member
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