Matt is the co-leader of McGuireWoods’ Environmental Litigation practice group. He focuses on environmental, toxic tort, class action, occupational safety and health, and land use litigation. Matt also has significant general commercial litigation experience, and he has represented local governments on a wide range of matters.
For well over two decades, Matt has represented clients in the solid waste management, chemical and animal agriculture industries, among others.
Matt has handled cases in all levels of the Virginia court system and in California, Florida, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Utah and West Virginia.
Prior to joining the Firm, Matt served as Law Clerk to United States District Court Judge Nauman S. Scott.
- Defense of Smithfield Foods and its subsidiaries in numerous mass tort, class action, and environmental citizen suits in Missouri, North Carolina, Florida and Utah, relating to allegations of personal injury, property damage, and environmental degradation arising from the company’s farming operations.
- Representation of DuPont in defense of an environmental civil suit brought by the Sierra Club and NRDC relating to historic mercury deposits in the South River in Virginia. Attained a unique settlement involving a six-year study of the mercury issues.
- Defended and obtained a favorable settlement for a solid waste authority, a city and a county in a citizens suit asserting RCRA, CERCLA and state common law claims alleging that a municipal landfill violated solid waste management statutes and regulations, and that landfill operations injured their property.
- Representation of a group of agricultural concerns, challenging a county’s ban on the land application of biosolids. The Virginia Supreme Court overturned the trial court’s decision and sustained our client’s challenge striking down the local law.
- Defense of Waste Management in a number of land use, environmental and permitting claims concerning the development of a major port for the transshipment of municipal solid waste from barges to a nearby regional landfill. All of these claims were defeated at the trial court level and sustained on appeal.
- Defense of a joint state/federal criminal and civil investigation of an international food processing company for allegations related to purported failure to report air and water discharges of hazardous substances. Worked cooperatively with state and federal investigators and no criminal charges or civil penalties were issued.
Tulane University Law SchoolJD
Member, Order of the Coif1993
- University of VirginiaBA1990
Chairman, The Carver Promise. This mentoring program is aimed at increasing the educational opportunities for disadvantaged youth. The program is a partnership among Richmond City Public Schools, four area colleges and universities, and several Fortune 500 companies.
Member, Section of Natural Resources, Energy and Environmental Law, 1993-present, American Bar Association
Member; Environmental and Litigation Sections, Virginia Bar Association
Member; Executive Committee, Environmental Section, Bench/Bar Committee, Richmond Bar Association
Member, National Committee on University Resources, University of Virginia, 2009-present
Member, Benefactors Society Board, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Virginia, 2008-present
- Author, EPA Establishes Aug. 31 End Date for COVID-19 Era Discretion Policy, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, July 7, 2020
- Author, Additional EPA Guidance and Developments During the COVID-19 Era, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, April 28, 2020
- Author, State Environmental Enforcement Policies During COVID-19 and Response to EPA “Discretion” Policy, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, April 2, 2020
- Author, EPA Indicates that It May Relax Enforcement Measures for Narrow Categories of Environmental Legal Obligations Occurring After March 13, 2020, if Pandemic Causes Inability to Comply, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, March 30, 2020
- Co-author, "Occupational Safety and Health", Chapter in Employment Law in Virginia, Virginia Law Foundation, 1995-present
- District of Columbia
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia
- Supreme Court of Virginia
Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Commercial Litigation, 2013-2024; Litigation – Environmental, 2022, 2023, 2024; Environmental Law, 2023, 2024, Woodward/White, Inc.
Selected for inclusion as a “Leading Lawyer,” Environmental Litigation, Virginia, Legal 500 US, 2018
Recognized in Legal 500 for Environmental Litigation
- Hon. Nauman S. Scott, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, 1993-1994