Former Senior EPA Official Steven Cook Joins Bracewell’s Environment, Lands and Resources Practice
HOUSTON – Bracewell LLP announced today that Steven D. Cook has joined the firm as of counsel in the Houston office. Prior to joining Bracewell, Cook served three years as the deputy assistant administrator for the Office of Land and Emergency Management with the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and more than two decades as lead HSE counsel at LyondellBasell, one of the world’s largest plastic, chemical and refining companies.
“We are thrilled to welcome Steven to our Houston office and the environmental team,” said Bracewell Managing Partner Gregory M. Bopp. “Steven has a wealth of experience in the environmental arena that will add to our ability to serve clients in Texas as well as nationally.”
Cook served as the deputy assistant administrator for the EPA’s Office of Land and Emergency Management from 2018 to 2021. He oversaw key national programs on process safety, incident response, coal ash management and the environmental cleanup of hundreds of sites. Cook also chaired the EPA’s Superfund Task Force. He joined the EPA after nearly 23 years as lead counsel at LyondellBasell, where he provided legal direction on health, safety, environmental and security matters.
“Steven is a highly regarded member of the environmental legal community. He brings over 30 years of experience to the firm, including an extensive knowledge of EPA policies and the chemical and refinery industry,” said Timothy A. Wilkins, a partner in Bracewell’s environmental, lands and resources practice, co-chair of the environmental, social and governance practice, and managing partner of the firm’s Austin office.
Cook will focus his practice at Bracewell on issues related to complex Superfund sites and reopeners, major incident and crisis responses, and the siting and permitting of new energy and mining projects.
“Bracewell has a highly regarded environmental team,” said Cook. “I look forward to working with my new colleagues in advising clients on a host of environmental issues.”
Cook earned a B.S. in chemical engineering from Brigham Young University and graduated magna cum laude from Brigham Young University J. Reuben Clark Law School. He later earned an MBA from The University of Texas McCombs School of Business. Cook has been an adjunct professor at the University of Houston Law Center, where he taught courses on the Clean Air Act, enforcement and the intersection of environmental and bankruptcy law.