2023 Villanova Environmental Law Journal Blank Rome LLP Symposium, 02/10

“Environmental Justice & Waste”


Friday, February 10
9:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.

Laurence E. Hirsch ’71 Classroom (Room 101)
John F. Scarpa Hall
299 N. Spring Mill Road, Villanova, PA 19085

Modern developed economies generate tremendous amounts of waste, the burdens of which fall disproportionately on marginalized communities and populations. The 2023 Villanova Environmental Law Journal Blank Rome LLP Symposium will examine problems associated with different types of waste–trash, water pollution and medical waste–from an environmental justice perspective. Panels will bring together interdisciplinary experts and community leaders to discuss the problems that waste poses for vulnerable populations and to identify potential solutions.

The Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board has approved this symposium for 3 substantive CLE credits. Please note registration for this event is required. 



9:00 a.m.: Welcome


9:10 a.m.: Trash & Environmental Justice
This panel will examine how solid waste, and specifically the illegal dumping of trash, affects Philadelphia and its residents.  Panelists will explain the problem and offer strategies for progress.

  • Kristin Bray, First Deputy City Solicitor, City of Philadelphia Law Department
  • Terrill Haigler, Ya Fav Trashman, Community Cleanup and Advocacy in Philly
  • Teea Tynes, Community Health Worker, Trash Academy Program

Moderated by Shari Hersh, Artist, Organizer and Facilitator, Trash Academy Program, and Ana Blanco ’23


10:15 a.m.: Water & Environmental Justice
This panel will examine how wastewater problems burden environmental justice communities, the challenges in using traditional environmental law and policy to address these problems, and opportunities for creative solutions.

  • Emma Bast, Staff Attorney, PennFuture
  • Stuart Clarke, Program Director, William Penn Foundation
  • Carolyn Moseley, Executive Director, Eastwick United Community Development Association

Moderated by Todd Aagaard, Professor of Law, Charles Widger School of Law


11:20 a.m.: Break


11:30 a.m.: Medical Waste & Environmental Justice
This panel of interdisciplinary professionals, academic scholars, and registered nurses will examine the potential for more sustainable practices for managing and disposing of medical waste both in Pennsylvania as well as the United States generally. 

Moderated by Ruth McDermott-Levy, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN, Professor and Co-Director, Mid-Atlantic Center for Children's Health and the Environment, Villanova University M. Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing, and Samantha Newman ’23


12:45 p.m.: Closing Remarks
Ebony Griffin, Senior Legislative Counsel, Earthjustice