Senior Attorney and Leader of the Clean Water Defense Initiative
Every person has a right to clean water. That’s why Kelly works tirelessly to lead SELC’s Clean Water Defense Initiative—a team of attorneys, policy experts, lobbyists, and communications professionals—in fighting for federal protections under the Clean Water Act. Kelly and her team work in all three branches of government—at the state and federal levels—to create, strengthen, and defend protections so that the streams, wetlands, lakes, and other waterways that families and communities depend on are healthy and clean.
Kelly also works to keep industrial toxins out of rivers and other sources of drinking water. She was one of the attorneys that negotiated the settlement with the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality requiring the Chemours Company to clean up its facility’s per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) pollution. She also negotiated agreements with the City of Burlington requiring the city to launch the first-of-its kind investigation to identify industrial sources of PFAS pollution into its wastewater treatment plants and the source of drinking water for several downstream communities.
Working at SELC allows me to make a difference in other people’s lives, including people who have been unfairly overburdened by pollution for far too long.Senior Attorney Kelly Moser
“Through my work at SELC, I channel my energy towards righting environmental injustices and making sure everyone has access to clean water. And I get to do this work alongside some of the best colleagues I’ve ever had – colleagues who are not only brilliant, but also steadfast, compassionate, and who get up to do the right thing every single day.”
Kelly’s legal career has come full circle, rooted in a place in the southeast that she reveres: the Okefenokee Swamp. During a 1999 camping trip there, “I decided to go to law school to fight for the environment and our natural resources. I had never experienced anything like the Okefenokee – with its moss-covered cypress trees, lily-covered water, alligators, countless birds like the sandhill crane, and so many sounds. It is majestic and sacred.” The next year, she entered law school, and her path has taken her around the southeast, including a previous stretch as a staff attorney with SELC in 2012-2013, and to the Pacific Northwest. Today, more than twenty years later, she is part of the team fighting to guard the Okefenokee and the wetlands critical to the swamp’s hydrology and health from a proposed titanium mine.
“Although my journey to fighting for the environment was a circuitous one, I have come full circle. All these years after my trip to the Okefenokee, I am now where I wanted to be all along, at SELC fighting for the long-term protection of our natural environment, including the hundreds of acres of wetlands that are critical to the health of the Okefenokee Swamp.”
- Perkins Coie (Seattle), partner
- United States Department of Justice, Attorney General Honor Attorney program, Environment and Natural Resource Division, trial attorney
- U.S. District Court, District of Columbia, law clerk to the Honorable William Benson Bryant
- Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, Strategic Leadership Program
- Lambda Legal National Leadership Council, member
- J.D., Georgetown University Law Center, cum laude; Georgetown International Environmental Law Review, senior editor; Institute for Public Representation Environmental Law Clinic
- B.A., Wake Forest University
- With SELC since 2018 (and from 2012-2013)