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Nicholas A. Robinson Alumni Achievement Award

The Pace Law community gathered to honor three distinguished Pace Law alumni for their significant contributions to the field of environmental law on March 12, 2013.

View Professor Jim May's acceptance speech.

James R. May, Esq., LL.M. '91

James R. May is a Professor of Law and co-director of the Environmental Law Center and Adjunct Professor of Graduate Engineering at Widener University. He has been an academic, a founder and director of two leading 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 (including some in the U.S. Supreme Court) and has authored numerous legal publications relating to environmental and constitutional law.

May is a past Council Member to the governing board of ABA SEER and is founder and inaugural Chair of its Task Force on Constitutional Law. He is a past member of the Committee on Environmental Law to the IUCN. He is the founder, immediate past executive director, and president of the Mid-Atlantic Environmental Law Center. He served as the director of Widener Institute at the Macquarie University Environmental Law Centre in Sydney, Australia and taught International Environmental Law in Sydney and Nairobi, Kenya.

May earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a J.D. from the University of Kansas and an LL.M. from Pace, where he was the Feldshuh Environmental Fellow, graduated first in his class. He lives in Wilmington Delaware with his wife and two children.

William J. Cahill, Esq., J.D. '95

Throughout his legal career, William J. Cahill has maintained a dedication to environmental law, notwithstanding the demands of private practice.

As the owner of W.J. Cahill & Associates, Mr. Cahill serves as counsel to Raritan Baykeeper, an organization dedicated to stopping pollution, championing public access, influencing land use decisions, and restoring habitat throughout the Hudson-Raritan Estuary, and Hackensack Riverkeeper, a group dedicated to protecting and defending the environmental quality of the Hackensack River watershed.  Cahill was also a founder of Raritan Baykeeper and of the Hackensack Meadowlands Preservation Alliance.

Cahill began his legal career as an adjunct staff attorney at the Rutgers Environmental Law Clinic, where he helped preserve a 600-acre parcel in the Meadowlands targeted for development.

In his personal time, Cahill is a dedicated board member of Friends of Holmdel Open Spaces, a grassroots organization devoted to acquiring and preserving farmlands and other open spaces. 

Basil B. Seggos, Esq., J.D. '01

Basil Seggos is the Assistant Secretary for the Environment for the State of New York.  In this capacity, he serves as environmental policy advisor to Governor Cuomo and oversees the operations of several environmental commissions and agencies, including the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the Office of Parks Recreation & Historic Preservation, the Adirondack Park Agency and the Environmental Facilities Corporation.

Basil previously served as Vice President of Business Development at Hugo Neu Corporation, a private equity company focused on building and managing clean-tech businesses.  Basil also served as the Hudson Riverkeeper’s Chief Investigator and Attorney, during which time he directed the Hudson River Program, managed hundreds of pollution litigations and advocated for stronger local, state, and federal environmental policies.  Basil also focused on urban environmental issues as a program associate at the Natural Resources Defense Council in New York City. 

Basil earned his Juris Doctor and Environmental Law Certificate from Pace Law School in 2001.  During law school, Basil served as an environmental law clerk with the White House Council on Environmental Quality and as a student attorney with the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic. 

In addition to fulfilling his duties as Assistant Secretary for the Environment, Basil is also currently serving as a Lieutenant in the Judge Advocate General Corps, U.S. Army Reserve.  Basil lives with his wife and three daughters outside of Albany.


The Nicholas A. Robinson Alumni Achievement Award was established in 2005 to recognize Pace alumni who have made significant contributions to environmental law. In 2007, Professor Robinson requested that the Pace Environmental Alumni Council (PEAC) take over bestowal of this annual honor.

(Pictured above, Marla Weider, J.D. '93, received the 2009 Robinson Award for her outstanding work with the EPA cleaning up major hazardous waste sites in New York and the Caribbean.)

Past Recipients

Pace Law School is proud of the following recipients of the Nicholas A. Robinson Alumni Achievement Award for their significant contributions to environmental law:

2009
Marla Wieder, JD '93
United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

2008
Robert J. Goldstein, LLM '92, SJD '01
United States Military Academy

2007
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., LLM '87
Waterkeeper Alliance

2006
Brendan O’Neill, JD '85
The Vineyard Conservation Society

2005
Maya van Rossum, JD '92
Delaware Riverkeeper