Our Team

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Nancie G. Marzulla
Nancie G. Marzulla is a founding partner of Marzulla Law, based in Washington, D.C.  Nancie's practice concentrates on litigation in the fields of water rights, takings, and environmental claims against the federal government in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Nancie served as an Attorney-Advisor, and subsequently as a trial lawyer in the Employment Section of the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice. In 1988, Nancie joined the law firm of Verner, Liipfert (now DLA Piper), where she litigated complex airline and other civil matters.

In 1991, Ms. Marzulla founded Defenders of Property Rights, where she litigated high profile property claims representing small business and land owners in the Supreme Court, federal courts of appeal, and trial courts... Read more

Roger J. Marzulla
Roger J. Marzulla is one of the nation’s leading environmental, water, and property lawyers. As Assistant Attorney General in charge of the U.S. Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division, Roger learned first hand the operations and litigation styles of his client agencies: EPA, Interior Department, Bureau of Reclamation, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Marine Fisheries Service, Department of Transportation, Department of Commerce.

In 1997, he co-founded Marzulla Law, where he brings to bear more than 35 years of expertise representing companies and individuals in industries as diverse as land and project development, aerospace, chemicals, oil and gas, mining, timber, manufacturing, computers, agriculture and water service... Read more

Ian F. Gaunt
Ian Gaunt is an associate at Marzulla Law. Prior to joining the firm as an attorney, he was our law clerk while attending Georgetown University Law Center. In May 2011, he graduated cum laude with a J.D. In 2010 he was the recipient of the CALI Award, which recognizes excellence achievement by law students in their studies. The award is given to the student with the highest grade in the class as determined by law school faculty.

During his time at Georgetown he was an intern for Judge Henry H. Kennedy, Jr., of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. He also worked as a litigation law clerk at the Washington Legal Foundation conducting legal research, reviewing trial records, and developing legal arguments with Chief Litigation Counsel for original litigation and amicus curiae briefs to the U.S. Supreme Court, Circuit Courts of Appeals, and District Courts (including work on HLP v. Holder, Ashcroft v. Al-Kidd, and
United States v. Arizona).

Ian is member of the D.C. Bar and the U.S. Court of Federal Claims Bar Association. Among Ian’s interests are blues guitar, cooking, watching boxing, ancient Greek history, and theater. He also enjoys traveling, especially to Australia where his father is from.

Brittany Zale
As Marzulla Law's eminently capable office manager, Brittany Zale is key to keeping things running smoothly at our firm. A graduate of George Washington University with a Bachelor's in International Affairs, Brittany joined Marzulla in 2009 and served as the firm's receptionist. In May 2009 she became a full-time paralegal, and in August 2010 moved on to become our beloved office manager.

During college Brittany was a student volunteer at the White House where she gained a unique perspective of public opinion and national politics answering the White House comment line and documenting the opinions of callers. During her time at GWU she also had the pleasure of working at the National Foundation of Women Legislators, the Woodrow Wilson Center, and the law firm of Hodgson Russ in Buffalo, NY.

But her experience at Marzulla has proven to be among the most rewarding in her professional life to date.

"Since joining Marzulla Law in my final year of college, I've been given wonderful opportunities and learned more than I ever imagined," says Brittany. "Nancie and Roger Marzulla have given me priceless guidance in my transition from receptionist, to paralegal, and to the office manager position."

Nancie Marzulla is quick to return the praise. "Brittany is one of the most dedicated people I have had the pleasure of working with. She never stops until the job is done right, which is one of the things I most admire about her."

Among Brittany's myriad interests and hobbies are: trail running, farmers' markets and local foods, watching hockey and taking weekend trips. She is a member of PATC (Potomac Appalachian Trail Club) and the Virginia Happy Trail Running Club, where she was 2010's "Rookie of the Year."

Tess Sadler
Tess Sadler is one of our two interns for the 2012 fall season, coming to us from the Washington Center's Law and Criminal Justice internship program. A fourth year student at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas, Tess is majoring in Pre-Law Philosophy with a minor in Political Science. Tess started her internship with a bang, having joined the firm just as preparation for the back-to-back trials were underway. Tess played key roles in both trials helping to organize trial exhibits, preparing witnesses for examination, and actually participating in the courtroom helping witnesses with exhibit binders while on the stand.

"Only a month in and already I have been exposed to so much trial experience and I have been privileged to witness such a talented team of litigators," says Tess. "This experience has confirmed my desire to pursue law school and I have no doubt the wisdom and skills I have gleamed from shadowing Roger and Nancie will facilitate my future academic and professional endeavors. I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of Marzulla Law, a hardworking, enriching environment, where each individual clearly strives for excellence."

Tess describes herself as a fitness fanatic, and she enjoys running, yoga, and cycling. She also has a passion for rock climbing, and is certified as a professional rock climbing instructor. She also enjoys reading, and lists William Somerset Maugham, Albert Camus, and F. Scott Fitzgerald as being among her favorite authors.

Avery Peechatka
Avery Peechatka is a student at George Mason University School of Law and will be a summer associate here at Marzulla Law for the 2012 summer season. A graduate of Penn State University with a Bachelor of Science in Economics, Avery has a strong interest in environmental, land use, eminent domain, and water law, and has expressed being "intrigued by the interplay between fundamental property rights, the cause of environmental conservation, and the dynamically political field of environmental regulation."

During his Spring 2012 semester at George Mason, he worked for the U.S. Department of the Interior, Office of the Solicitor, researching and advising the Division of Indian Affairs on a variety of administrative and environmental issues, including NEPA, RCRA, and TSCA compliance, water rights, environmental justice, and land acquisition. Avery will be entering his third year of studies at George Mason this Fall.

"Working at Marzulla Law presents a fantastic opportunity to gain an insight into the dynamic field of environmental, water, and takings litigation. I am thrilled to have the chance to contribute to, and learn from, such a successful and well-respected team."

When not spending time on work or school, Avery enjoys being outdoors ---- camping, hiking, and traveling. Being new to Washington, D.C., he has so far enjoyed exploring the region and discovering what the local culture has to offer. Avery is also an avid auto racing and college football fan.

Tucker Roy
A fourth-year Business Administration Major at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, Tucker joins Marzulla Law as one of our 2012 summer interns. He comes to us via the Washington Center's renowned Law and Criminal Justice internship program. His interest in the law derives from his degree focus on Music Administration, where he is pursuing course work in Music Industry Contract Law, Legal Issues in the Entertainment Industry, Music Publishing, Copyright Law, Business Law, Business Ethics, and Principles of Management.

During his time with us he has assisted our attorneys and staff in the organization and preparation of case materials, legal documents, as well as attending case-related hearings involving the Endangered Species Act at the House of Representatives Cannon Building.

"This summer has opened my eyes to what really goes on within a law firm," says Tucker. "I have learned that it truly takes hard work and dedication to give clients the best service and counsel possible."

Tucker's interests include music, going to shows and concerts, documentary films, and preparing authentic Tennessee barbeque.

Lucy Olson
Lucy also joins us as one of our 2012 summer interns from the Washington Center's internship program. She is a fourth-year student at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California where she is pursuing her B.A. in Political Science and English Literature. Lucy decided to participate in the Washington Center's internship program because she was eager to get first-hand experience working in an active litigation firm. Not surprisingly, Lucy is also considering going to law school after she graduates.

"I've learned so much about the daily goings on in a law office this summer," says Lucy. "I feel like I can make a much more informed decision about whether or not to attend law school, which is exactly what I came to D.C. to find out!"

At Marzulla Law, she contributes to the legal team's efforts to prepare for our upcoming trials in numerous ways. She assisted attorneys during depositions and we've put her writing and editing skills to good use---- skills that she developed as a copy editor at the Loyolan Newspaper.

We hope that her summer in Washington was as exciting as last summer, when she lived in Ireland for five weeks. There, she studied Irish literature at Trinity College, Dublin.

Lucy enjoys ballet, running, reading, and watching the San Francisco Giants play baseball.

Lauren Fernandez
Lauren Fernandez is the spring 2012 intern here at Marzulla Law. Majoring in Criminology and minoring in Psychology at the University of South Florida, Lauren comes to us through the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars, Law and Criminal Justice Program. Her current focus in the program is international humanitarian law and a civic engagement project centered on global women's rights.

Lauren has worked on a number of different cases, assisting with legal research and document review. She also organized the hundreds of legal memorandums from ML case files. On her very first day of the internship, she saw the inside of a courtroom when she attended a hearing at the U.S. Court of Federal Claims on the Chrysler takings case under the TARP provisions, (see March, 2012 newsletter). She later attended and reported a number of important legal proceedings for firm attorneys.

Lauren's organizational affiliations and memberships include: the Law Society at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg; Psychological Science Organization; election to Pi Gamma Mu for excellence in the social sciences; election to Alpha Phi Sigma for excellence in Criminal Justice; and election to Psi Chi for excellence in Psychology. She has also received the USF Director's Award scholarship, Bright Futures scholarship, and Wilhelmina Modeling Scholarship.

In addition to being U.S. Sailing certified, Lauren's personal interests include surfing, horseback riding, hiking, fishing, knee boarding, surfing, jogging, and yoga.

Ben La Manna
Ben La Manna is our newest intern here at Marzulla Law. He is currently pursuing his bachelor's degree in Business Management and Finance at St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia. In a very short period of time Ben has already grasped the level of commitment, dedication and precision a career in law requires.

"My first month with Marzulla Law has been nothing short of amazing," says Ben. "I have been able to engage in vigorous tasks that have educated me about things that I was completely unaware of. The entire staff, including Nancie and Roger, has been so helpful with mentoring me through the legal system. Marzulla Law is a class act law firm, and I am grateful for the opportunity the entire team has given me."

Ben refers to himself as a "huge sports fan," and was very actively involved in a number of sports and sports-related activities in high school, and continues to be so in college. He sees himself eventually enjoying a career in the sports and entertainment industry, possibly even becoming a sports agent. He does confess that his time at Marzulla has also made him consider possibly pursuing environmental law.

Melissa Vedder
It is our pleasure to present Melissa Vedder, a Bachelor of Arts student from St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada. Melissa is interning with our firm this Spring through the Washington Center's renowned internship program.

Melissa has been working primarily on helping to prepare for a trial that will commence on April 12, 2011, in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. The case, International Industrial Park v. United States, is a breach of contract lawsuit against the United States. It concerns the Border Patrol's failure to honor its agreement with landowners in San Diego, California, to move an easement and build a road to San Diego County standards. The lawsuit seeks $5 million in damages, plus attorneys' fees and costs resulting from the breach.

"Melissa has been a pleasure to have around the office," says Lucy Wiggins, supervising attorney at Marzulla Law. "She has been a tremendous help in preparing for our upcoming trial."

Melissa has been involved in helping to prepare witness and exhibit lists for the trial, and with pulling relevant deposition testimony for pre-trial filings. She also sat in on key depositions earlier in the litigation. Finally, Melissa will assist at trial, which is expected to last for a week. Since Melissa plans to go to law school one day, this hands-on trial experience is invaluable.

"I am very fortunate to participate in The Washington Center program because the experience I am gaining will last me a lifetime," says Melissa, whose interests include reading, traveling, volleyball, and competitive jump rope. What of her future goals? "I want to visit the Galapagos Islands, scuba dive in the Great Barrier Reef, and go bungee jumping in New Zealand."

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