Steve Fleischli '94

When I graduated from UCLA School of Law in 1994, I never would have guessed how my legal career – and my appreciation for what one can do with a law degree – would evolve.  As an environmental advocate, I’ve had the opportunity to work on some of the biggest water quality cases in Los Angeles.   As the head of Waterkeeper Alliance, my career took me across the country and around the world, working with diverse communities to address water pollution in places like India, Australia and Russia.  I’ve had the pleasure of teaching as an Adjunct Professor at Pepperdine School of Law.  I’ve also written two novels, which are just as meaningful to me as any legal victory.  Creative writing can be quite cathartic, and it allows for the expression of ideas and emotion in a way that most legal writing simply won’t tolerate.

I now run the Water Program at NRDC, tackling a variety of water-related challenges here in the U.S.  And I am quite certain that without a law degree I would not have had the ability, let alone the fortitude, to have the career I’ve had so far.