PHILADELPHIA, March 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Michael L. Krancer is re-joining Blank Rome LLP as a partner in the firm's Philadelphia office. With more than two decades of energy industry and public policy experience, Mr. Krancer will chair the firm's Energy, Petrochemical and Natural Resources Practice, enhancing the firm's existing energy and public policy talent and advising US and global energy clients in the full range of legal, public policy, government relations, state and federal regulatory, financial, corporate, and labor matters.
"Secretary Krancer is one of the country's most prominent and forward-thinking leaders in energy policy, development and regulation," said Alan J. Hoffman, Blank Rome co-chairman and managing partner. "Michael's practical experience at the highest levels of strategic state and federal government policymaking and government relations will significantly enhance our capabilities, particularly regarding the Marcellus and Utica Shale Plays and, accordingly, we expect he will be spending a lot of time in western Pennsylvania."
"The rapid move towards American energy self-sufficiency has created new opportunities for our nation," said Mr. Krancer. "The eyes of the world are on Pennsylvania and Appalachia in particular as a focal point of this paradigm shift in the energy landscape. Blank Rome understands the new energy and natural resources reality in Pennsylvania and throughout the world, and it has tremendous intellectual assets with which to help clients navigate this complicated and evolving industry landscape.
"A key asset of Blank Rome's energy industry practice is our ability to leverage the expertise of practitioners in all of our offices to form cross-border, cross-practice teams," added Mr. Krancer. "Our lawyers and policy specialists in Houston and Philadelphia, for example, have enabled us to advise a range of Texas-based oil and gas firms making substantial investments in Pennsylvania. In New York, we advise energy businesses on the structuring of financial derivatives to manage their risk, and in Washington, DC, the firm advises clients on the gamut of federal industry regulation and public policy issues. From every point of our international footprint, from Blank Rome's offices in China and Los Angeles to our presence in Texas, in New York, and in Pennsylvania, where so much of the energy industry is focused on developing new resources, we are well-situated to serve energy clients.
"I deeply appreciate the opportunity that Governor Corbett gave me to lead the Department of Environmental Protection. I am also truly excited to return to Philadelphia and my friends and partners at Blank Rome," concluded Mr. Krancer.
About Michael Krancer
A prominent speaker, writer and expert witness before United States Congressional Committee hearings, Mr. Krancer is widely recognized for his practical thought leadership in a wide range of energy issues, including:
- Responsible and environmentally sensitive development of Pennsylvania's resources;
- The role of unconventional formation natural gas and oil development in the evolution of American energy potential;
- Proper, fact-based and predictable environmental regulation of natural gas development and other industries;
- The relationship between sound energy and environmental policy;
- The proper relationship between the federal government and the states in environmental and energy matters.
Mr. Krancer's salient accomplishments at the DEP include:
- Playing a key role on the Governor's team that attracted new economic development to Pennsylvania, including the rebirth of the Philadelphia refineries and Royal Dutch Shell's potential new petrochemical facility in western Pennsylvania;
- Ordering a complete systematic analysis of the inherited permitting backlog which resulted in a 40% reduction of the permit backlog within just two years;
- Launching the Permit Decision Guarantee Process, bringing a business-like efficiency and predictability to the permitting process which resulted in an increase in permitting efficiency between 20% and 60% in all programs;
- Increasing DEP's organizational effectiveness by instilling the core value of coordination and integration among DEP's legal, policy, and legislative programs, press and external affairs, as well as among all DEP Regional Offices;
- Instituting the "A-Team" concept, providing businesses with one point of contact at the DEP for major projects;
- Leading efforts to coalesce mining companies, conservation groups and the federal EPA for mining/acid mine drainage reclamation projects that provided new coal mining jobs and also significantly increased the miles of impaired streams restored to designated uses.
A partner at Blank Rome from 1992 to 1999, Mr. Krancer represented clients in complex civil and commercial litigation in state and federal courts. He left Blank Rome for public service, serving until 2007 as Judge and Chief Judge of Pennsylvania's Environmental Hearing Board (EHB), the state-wide trial/appellate court for environmental matters involving appeals from actions of the DEP. He returned to the EHB in 2009 after a run for Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and a stint as Associate General Counsel of the Exelon Corporation, where he focused on areas of environmental law, health and safety compliance, and litigation. Governor Tom Corbett appointed Mr. Krancer Secretary as his first Secretary of DEP in January 2011.
Mr. Krancer is a graduate of Washington & Lee University School of Law, where he earned a J.D. summa cum laude, and the University of Virginia, where he earned a B.A. in Economics with distinction.
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SOURCE Blank Rome LLP