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Land Use Law Center Staff
Professor of Law
Founder & Faculty Liaison
Professor Nolon is the James D. Hopkins Professor of Law at Pace University School of Law and teaches in the fields of property, land use, real estate, and environmental law. He is the Founder of and Faculty Liaison to the Land Use Law Center and is also Director of the law school's Kheel Center on the Resolution of Environmental Interest Disputes. Professor Nolon received his JD degree from the University of Michigan, where he was a member of the Barrister's Academic Honor Society. He received a Fulbright Scholarship to develop a frameworklaw for sustainable development in Argentina, and has served as a consultant to both President Carter's Council on Development Choices in the 1980s and President Clinton's Council on Sustainable Development. He has held a visiting appointment at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies since 2001. Most recently, Professor Nolon received the American Planning Association’s (APA) 2009 National Planning Leadership Award for a Planning Advocate, and was appointed to the APA’s Amicus Curiae Committee and to the Editorial Board of the Metro New York Transit-Friendly Development Newsletter. Professor Nolon’s writings include over a dozen law review articles and a number of books published by the West Group, the Environmental Law Institute, Cambridge University Press, and McGraw Hill. He is a frequent guest speaker at national, state, and local conferences.
Adjunct Professor of Law
Jessica Bacher is the Land Use Law Center’s Managing Director, as well as an adjunct professor at Pace University School of Law. Ms. Bacher teaches Land Use Law and the Advanced Land Use and Sustainable Development Seminar, runs the academic programs, and guides student research in areas such as sea level rise and smart growth. She graduated from the University of Florida with highest honors in 1999 with her B.S. in Marketing and a minor in Environmental Studies. She received her J.D. summa cum laude from Pace Law School in 2003 along with a Certificate in Environmental Law. While in law school, she published two scholarly articles in professional law journals on the topic of using land use law to preserve barrier islands. Ms. Bacher was one of the first Graduate Fellows at the Land Use Law Center. She coauthors a regular land use feature in the New York Law Journal and Real Estate Law Journal and has edited numerous small books in the fields of Land Use and Real Estate Law.
Tiffany Zezula is the Managing Director of for both the Land Use Law Center and the Kheel Center on the Resolution of Environmental Interest Disputes. Ms. Zezula trains local officials, environmentalists, planners, and developers in land use law and consensus building techniques, provides strategic assistance to local governments and intermunicipal councils, and mediates land use disputes. She is also a frequent speaker on collaborative governance and local decision-making. Ms. Zezula graduated from Tulane University in 2000 with her B.S. in Ecological, Environmental, and Organismal Biology and a minor in History. She received her J.D. cum laude from Pace Law School in 2003 along with a certificate in Environmental Law. In addition to publishing two scholarly articles in environmental law journals, Ms. Zezula has edited numerous small books in the field of Land Use Law. She also is a certified mediator in the State of New York.
Adjunct Professor of Law
Manager of Urban Programs
Jennie Nolon Blanchard is an Attorney for the Land Use Law Center and also serves as an adjunct professor of law at Pace Law School in White Plains, NY. Ms. Blanchard’s work focuses primarily on the growth of urban centers, working closely with cities to address obstacles to redevelopment and sustainability. She also manages the Center’s student research; writes frequently on legal issues pertaining to land use and sustainable development; lectures at CLE programs, bar association events, and conferences; and trains local officials, environmentalists, planners, developers, and attorneys in land use law and consensus-building techniques. Ms. Blanchard graduated cum laude from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Science degree in 2003. In 2008, she received her Master of Environmental Management degree from Yale University with an advanced concentration in Urban Ecology and Environmental Design and her J.D. cum laude from Pace Law School, where she was on the Pace Environmental Law Review. She has also achieved designation by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) as a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professional, making her one of fewer than 40 LEED APs in New York State registered in the area of legal practice. With a keen interest for volunteerism, Ms. Blanchard has served as a Peer Review Editor for the Pace Environmental Law Review, a volunteer grader for the American Planning Association’s Planning & Law Division (PLD) annual Smith-Babcock-Williams Student Writing Competition, is PLD’s current Chair-Elect and newsletter Editor-in-Chief, and is a Junior Board Member of Music for Autism – an international organization committed to raising public awareness and improving the quality of life of individuals with autism and their families through music.
Adjunct Professor of Law
Jeff LeJava is the Land Use Law Center’s Managing Director of Innovation and also serves as an adjunct law professor at Pace Law School. Previously, Jeff served as the Administrator of the Highlands Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) Program for the New Jersey Highlands Water Protection & Planning Council, a state land use agency that manages the protection and development of an 860,000-acre region of northern New Jersey. In this capacity, Jeff developed and was implementing one of the nation’s largest TDR programs. Jeff also served as Staff Attorney for the Council where his responsibilities included litigation coordination and overseeing the Council’s land preservation activities. Before joining the Highlands Council in 2005, Jeff practiced environmental law for seven years with White & Case LLP and Latham & Watkins LLP. He is qualified to practice before the New Jersey and New York bars and the US District Court for the District of New Jersey. Jeff received his J.D., magna cum laude, from Pace University School of Law in 1998 along with a Certificate in Environmental Law, and his B.A., cum laude, from the College of the Holy Cross in 1994.
Meg Byerly is a Staff Attorney at the Land Use Law Center. In this position Ms. Byerly assists with the Center’s various programs, including projects focused on neighborhood development and sea level rise. She also helps with the Advanced Land Use and Sustainable Development Seminar and assists with student research management. Ms. Byerly graduated magna cum laude with a B.S. in Biology from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in Lynchburg, Virginia, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In 2004, she received her M.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences from Texas A&M University where she studied ornithology. In May 2010, Ms. Byerly received her J.D. magna cum laude from Pace Law School with a certificate in Environmental Law. At the same time, she graduated from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, earning her MEM. While attending Pace and Yale, Ms. Byerly served both as Professor Nolon’s Research Assistant and as Teaching Fellow for Yale’s Spring 2010 Land Use Planning and Practice Course. Additionally, Ms. Byerly served as Research and Writing Editor for the Pace Environmental Law Review during the 2008-2009 academic year.
Director of Administration
Ann Marie McCoy is the Director of Administration for both the Land Use Law Center and the Kheel Center on the Resolution of Environmental Interest Disputes. She has been with the Center since 1999, beginning as administrative assistant for both the Land Use Law Center and Pace's Graduate Program in Comparative Law. Ms. McCoy is responsible for all aspects of the administration of the Center, including its many educational and outreach programs. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Pace University magna cum laude in 2003, her Master of Science degree for Teachers from Pace in 2007 and Paralegal Studies Certificate in 2011.
LL.M. Research Fellow
Michael Joseph Goonan graduated magna cum laude from the University at Albany - SUNY in 2008. While at Albany, Michael majored in Sociology with a double minor in Business and English. In the summer of 2009, he studied comparative civil law and common law in Hong Kong, China and Dublin, Ireland through Pace Law School’s International Summer Abroad Program. In the spring of 2010 Michael worked as a clerk-extern in Judge Deborah Batts’ chambers located in the Southern District of New York through Pace’s Federal Judicial Honors Program. As an associate member of the Pace Law Review, he worked on a Smart Growth research assignment in preparation for Professor John R. Nolon’s “James D. Hopkins Professor of Law 2009-2011” lecture. Michael served as Professor Nolon’s Research Assistant, working on the book Climate Change and Sustainable Development Law in a Nutshell, co-authored by Professors John R. Nolon and Patricia E. Salkin. He graduated cum laude from Pace Law School in 2011 with a Certificate in Environmental Law. Currently, Michael is working at the Land Use Law Center as a Research Fellow while obtaining an LL.M. in Land Use and Sustainable Development Law at Pace Law School.
Steven E. Gavin
Steven E. Gavin is entering his second year at Pace University School of Law. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Intellectual History. Steven is a Founding Member of the Student Editorial Board for Planning Law, the newsletter of the Planning and Law Division of the American Planning Association, and serves as the Vice President of the Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Society at Pace. Prior to attending Pace, Steven worked for Wolters Kluwer Health in Philadelphia as a Publishing Assistant. Steven is interested is the increasing role of land use law in climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Conor Walline graduated summa cum laude from Westminster College in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy and sociology. While at Westminster, Conor wrote his Senior Thesis in philosophy on “The Panopticon without Borders: Autonomy and Agency in a Modern Surveillance Society.” Conor also graduated from the University of Utah in 2011 with his Master of Science in philosophy, completing his thesis on “The Value of Lockean Labor-Mixing: A Critique of Nozick’s Ownership-by-Fiat Theory of Property” and working as both a research assistant for Dr. Peggy Battin and a graduate instructor for introductory philosophy courses. Conor is currently a second year law student involved in Pace’s Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Society and Environmental Law Society. He has been Professor Noa Ben-Asher’s research assistant since December 2011 and began his research assistant position with Professor John Nolon at the Land Use Law Center in May 2012. Conor is expected to graduate from Pace Law School in 2014 with a J.D. and a Certificate in Environmental Law.
John Dalo is from Allendale, New Jersey and graduated from the University of Delaware in 2011, with a degree in Political Science. While an undergraduate, he worked for the student newspaper and created a sustainable water delivery business. Drawing on his interests in both government and environmental issues, he decided to study environmental law at Pace University Law School, where he is expected to graduate in May 2014. When John isn’t hitting the books, he enjoys participating in adventure sports such as skydiving, bungee jumping, surfing, and skiing.
Kevin Dwarka is an urban planning consultant specializing in land use planning and economic analysis. He has held senior positions at Nelson\Nygaard Consulting Associates, the Israel Union for Environmental Defense, and New York City Transit. Kevin holds a bachelors degree in history from Columbia College, a masters in city planning from the University of California at Berkeley, and a doctoral degree in public policy from the Hebrew University. Kevin is a Presidential Scholar at Pace School of Law, where he is studying environmental regulations and sustainable development law. He is a member of the adjunct faculty of Baruch College, where he teaches graduate courses in land use, environmental policy and urban economic development.
John Hoffman graduated magna cum laude from New Jersey Institute of Technology in 2011, with a Federated degree in History and with minors in Legal Studies and Science, Technology and Society. While at NJIT, John was involved in the Student Senate, Phi Beta Kappa, and helped develop interest in beginning a Prelaw Society. John is currently a rising 3L at Pace University School of Law. John began volunteering at the Land Use Law Center for Sustainable Development during the 2011 Autumn semester and in the Spring he had a guided externship at The Center. John was the secretary of the Pace’s Environmental Law Society during the 2011-2012 academic year and is also involved in Pace’s Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Society. He is expected to graduate from Pace Law School in 2013 with a J.D.
Amanda LaBarbera graduated cum laude from the University of New Haven in 2009 with a BA in Criminal Justice, a minor in legal studies and a minor in psychology. Amanda is entering her third year at Pace University School of Law. She volunteered at the Land Use Law Center in the Fall of 2011 and was then an extern in the Spring of 2012. She is currently completing a second externship for the Center while working for the City of Newburgh, New York. Amanda is expected to graduate in 2013 with a J.D. and a Certificate in Environmental Law.
Lisa Lee is a third year law school student currently working at the Land Use Law Center as a summer intern. Lisa graduated from Howard University with a Bachelor of Science degree in English in 2008. While attending Howard, Lisa worked at C-SPAN as a guest and production assistant for the Washington Journal. Lisa began working with the Land Use Law Center in the Fall of 2011 as a volunteer and returned in the Spring of 2011 as an intern. This Summer, Lisa is working in the City of Newburgh with distressed properties, assisting in the operation of the City’s newly formed Land Bank. She is expected to graduate from Pace School of Law in December of 2012 with a J.D. and a Certificate in Environmental Law.
Casey O'Donnell is a first year law-student studying environmental and land use law. As a summer-intern at the Land Use Law Center, Casey is working with Prof. Jessica Bacher and the Newburgh Community Land Bank to revitalize blighted and underutilized properties in Newburgh, NY. Prior to attending Pace Law School, Casey was the Zoning Enforcement Officer for the town of Greenwich, CT where he developed an interest in land use practices. Casey earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut in 2010 and his associate’s degree in electrical engineering from Fairfield University in 2005. Casey is expected to graduate from Pace Law School in 2014 with a J.D., a Certificate in Environmental Law, and a certificate of participation in Land Use & Sustainable Development Law.
Pierre Rivera graduated from Fordham University in 2006 with a Bachelors of Science in Engineering Physics. In 2007 he joined the Marine Corps as a Second Lieutenant. From 2009-2010, he deployed to Iraq as a Platoon Commander and to Afghanistan as a special team leader. Both units received awards for bravery. He currently holds the rank of Captain. In the summer of 2011, he studied International Intellectual Property law in Spain through Pace Law School’s International Summer Abroad Program. Pierre expects to graduate from Pace in May 2013 with a JD and a Certificate in International Law.
John Scherer graduated Summa Cum Laude from Queens College, City University of New York, in 2009, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and a minor in business. Since attending Pace Law School, John has been active in the Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Society, serving as Secretary for two consecutive years. He is expected to graduate from Pace Law School in 2013 with a J.D. and a Certificate in Environmental Law.
Edward Teyber came to Pace Law School to work on his juris doctorate after graduating from University of California Santa Barbara with a Bachelor’s in Environmental Studies. Edward’s interests lie in sustainable community development, land and natural resource allocation. Edward is a founding member of the student editorial board of the American Planning Association, Planning and Law Division newsletter. Edward is also the treasurer of the Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Society at Pace Law School. Before moving to White Plains, New York, Edward interned in a Santa Barbara non-profit law firm working to maintain agriculturally zoned parcels along California’s central coast. Edward Teyber is looking forward to working for the Land Use Law Center for Sustainable Development at Pace Law School this summer.