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Environmental Law

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Helen Hart

Norfolk Southern Corp.

Title: General solicitor

Other legal specialties: Real estate, energy

Birthplace: Central Maine

Education: Bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering, University of Rochester; law degree, George Mason University

Spouse: Erik Hart

Children: Mackenzie, 9, and Jackson, 6

Hobbies: Running; cooking/baking; camping; Sudoku; volunteer for and board involvement with organizations focused on literacy needs of homeless and at-risk children

First job as a lawyer: Associate in Washington, D.C., office of a large international energy firm

Fan of: New England Patriots and Boston Red Sox as well as my kids’ sports teams

Favorite vacation spot: Our family has made many vacation memories, but most notably from our annual visits to Maine and Vermont.

Recently read book: “Quiet” by Susan Cain

Career mentor: In each place where I have worked, I have found strong role models who have helped shape the lawyer I am today.

What are the main environmental issues that you handle at Norfolk Southern?
The railroad is regulated under almost every federal environmental statute and their state counterparts, along with implementing federal and state regulations. Over my years at NS, I have handled questions relating to all those areas, with a substantial number relating to the Clean Water Act and cleanups under CERCLA or state programs. In addition, I handle all mobile-source air emissions legal matters and a significant amount of real estate-related environmental matters, including brownfields projects.

What are the top priorities in the company’s sustainability program?
NS’s top sustainability priority is to encourage efficiency. Whether it’s building a service product that allows customers to select rail over less-efficient transportation modes, planning operations to leverage each asset to its fullest or employing technology to extract more output from every action and every gallon of fuel, we focus on reducing our environmental footprint — and that of our customers — to ensure the long-term financial and societal health of our companies and our communities.

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