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J. Wayne Cropp

Of Counsel

J. Wayne Cropp is a member of the Business Department at Baker Donelson with a focus on environmental law, public policy, and economic development.

Professional Biography

Mr. Cropp is a recognized author and lecturer on air quality, climate change, Superfund, and brownfield redevelopment. He is a former chairman of the Tennessee Bar Association's Environmental Law Committee. He also has deep political experience and relationships and brings unique experience on emerging environmental policies and advanced manufacturing initiatives including electric vehicles, emerging contaminants, and clean energy projects.

Mr. Cropp focuses on a full range of environmental law, with extensive experience in new source permitting, air quality, brownfield redevelopment and hazardous waste issues. He has been responsible for obtaining permits for several multi-billion dollar manufacturing projects, including in the electric vehicle space. Mr. Cropp is a recognized author and lecturer on Clean Air Act issues. During his government tenure as Executive Director of the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Air Pollution Control Bureau (1979 – 1990), he developed the implementation strategies that brought worldwide recognition to Chattanooga's environmental initiatives.

Included among his many activities are service on the national level as president of the Association of Local Air Pollution Control Officials (ALAPCO) (1983 – 1984), now known as the National Association of Clean Air Agencies (NACAA), and participation in the development of the National Air Toxics Strategy, as codified in the 1990 Clean Air Act, through his tenure as chairman of ALAPCO's Air Toxics Committee (1983 – 1990). He also served as project manager for an International Environmental Research Symposium for the World Health Organization in 1986, and chairman of the Chattanooga Summit in 1996. Mr. Cropp is the former chairman of the Environment Committee for the Chattanooga Regional Manufacturers Association, a position he held for 15 years.

Mr. Cropp is also a member of the Air and Waste Management Association; Section of Environmental, Energy, and Resources Committee of the American Bar Association; and Environmental Law Section of the Tennessee Bar Association (chairman, 2004 – 2005). He received the Air Conservationist of the Year Award from the Tennessee Conservation League in 1986.

  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell (more than 20 years)
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® for Environmental Law (since 2018)
  • Recipient – Corridor Champion Award, Tennessee Valley Corridor (2016)
  • Attorney (1978 – 1979) and Executive Director (1979 – 1990) – Chattanooga-Hamilton County Air Pollution Control Bureau
  • President – Association of Local Air Pollution Control Officials (ALAPCO) (1983 – 1984)
  • Chair – ALAPCO's Air Toxics Committee (1983 – 1990)
  • Chair, Environment Committee – Chattanooga Regional Manufacturers Association (1990 – 2005)
  • Member – Air and Waste Management Association (1980 – 2023)
  • Chair – Environmental Law Section of the Tennessee Bar Association (2004 – 2005)
  • Member – American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources; subcommittees: Nuclear Law Committee and Renewable, Alternative, and Distributed Energy Committee
  • President – Tennessee Junior Chamber of Commerce (1984 – 1985)
  • Legal Counsel – U.S. Junior Chamber of Commerce (1985 – 1986)
  • Air Conservationist of the Year Award, Tennessee Conservation League (1986)
  • Member – Association of Vapor Intrusion Professionals (2022)
  • "Regulatory Analysis and Green Building Trends," Association of Vapor Intrusion Professionals Conference, Nashville, Tennessee (October 2022)
  • "Environmental Stewardship in the Biden Administration," Southern Section, Air and Waste Management Association Annual Meeting (September 2022)
  • "Environmental Stewardship in the Biden Era," Chattanooga Regional Manufacturers Association (November 2021)
  • "Environmental Phoenix: The Chattanooga Story," Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation's Environmental Show of the South (May 2017)
  • "Is the Past Prologue: Environmental Regulation in the New Trump Administration," 84th Annual American Foundry Society's (AFS) Southeastern Regional Conference, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee (March 2017)
  • "Implications of EPA's 'Waters of the U.S.' Regulations," Tennessee Association of Manufacturers 2015 Environment, Health & Safety Summit (November 2015)
  • "Recent Developments in Environmental Issues Related to Real Estate Transactions: Environmental Due Diligence and Vapor Intrusion," Chattanooga Bar Association (October 2015)
  • "From Gritty City to Green – Manufacturing Hub," Society of Environmental Journalists 23rd Annual Conference, Chattanooga, Tennessee (October 2013)
  • "Chattanooga: The Gig City – How Chattanooga Because the First City in the Western Hemisphere to Use 1 Gigabit-per-Second Fiber Internet Service to Grow its Economy," University Economic Development Association Summit (October 2012)
  • Keynote Speaker – U.S. Department of Energy Asset Revitalization Workshop (June 2012)
  • Moderator – "Creating a National Model for Energy Innovation and Independence," Tennessee Valley Corridor Summit (May 2011)

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