Michael P. Last Highlights
Michael P. Last to Join the American College of Environmental Lawyers read more>>
Harvard Law School
- JD cum laude, 1971
- B.A., Magna cum laude, 1968
Bar and Court Admissions
Mr. Last represents clients with respect to air, water and hazardous materials regulatory matters involving the United States Environmental Protection Agency and state and local governmental agencies. He also represents clients with respect to solid waste management facility siting and operational issues and developers in connection with obtaining environmental approvals and performing environmental impact review for major projects. Given his experience with both environmental and real estate issues, Mr. Last has been a leader with respect to Brownfields redevelopment initiatives, including the creative use of insurance products to control risk and facilitate redevelopment opportunities.
Mr. Last has advised businesses, colleges and universities and lending institutions regarding controlling environmental liability and performing environmental due diligence. He has also worked with colleges and universities with respect to compliance auditing and environmental management systems. He has assisted hospitals and healthcare systems nationwide with respect to asbestos identification, management and abatement issues and has been a leader with respect to legal issues associated with mold. He has advised banks and other lenders with respect to managing potential environmental liability associated with loan origination and workouts.
Mr. Last has mediated and facilitated the resolution of two party and multi-party disputes involving environmental and real estate issues, as well as commercial disputes.
- Participated in the Executive Committee and was a lead negotiator with U.S. EPA in settlements of liability at multiple Federal Superfund Sites.
- Chaired Allocation Committees at large, multi-party Federal and state Superfund Sites.
- Served as Common Counsel for potentially responsible parties at Federal Superfund Sites.
- Represented colleges and universities in the design and negotiation with U.S. EPA of the College and University Laboratory Project XL (eXcellence and Leadership).
- Served as Executive Director of the Remedial Design/Remedial Action at the ReSolve, Inc. Superfund Site.
- Coordinated the project permitting for multiple large multi-use real estate developments, including obtaining Federal, state and local permits.
- Coordinated the project permitting for solid waste management projects, including sanitary landfills and recycling facilities.
- Through the Santa Fe Council for Environmental Excellence, organized and facilitated over 20 meetings of leaders from industry, government, environmental organizations and academia to foster common ground and coordinated action with respect to important environmental issues.
- Represented multiple real estate clients with respect to commercial leasing.
- In 1999, Mr. Last began his collaboration with Rackemann and has acted as co-counsel for specific matters and then as Counsel to the firm. Prior to that:
- Mr. Last was with the law firm of Warner & Stackpole, Boston, Massachusetts from 1972-1984 where he was a Partner and chair of the Real Estate/Environmental Law Department.
- Mr. Last was with the law firm of Gaston & Snow, Boston, Massachusetts from 1984-1991 where he was a Partner and chair of the Environmental Law Department.
- Mr. Last was with the law firm of Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C., Boston, Massachusetts from 1991-1999 where he was a Member and chair of the Environmental Law Section.
- Listed in "Who's Who in America"
- Listed in "Who's Who in American Law"
- Listed in “Who’s Who Legal” (the International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers)
- Listed as a "Super Lawyer"
- Listed in "The Best Lawyers in America"
- Boston Bar Association;
-Member of Council [Board of Directors] (1984-1987);
-Chairperson, Environment Committee (1979-1981)
-Chairperson, Urban Affairs Section, (1983-1987)
-Co-chairperson, Municipal Planning Process Committee, (1983-1987);
- American Bar Association
-Member, Standing Committee on Environmental Law, (1987-1991)
-Member, Natural Resources Section; Corporation, Banking and Business Law Section; and Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section.
- Member, The Abstract Club
- Member, Board of Directors, Environmental Business Council of New England (1997-present); Member, Executive Committee (2001-present); Vice Chair (2001-present).
- Founder and President of Santa Fe Council for Environmental Excellence, a non-profit corporation dedicated to bringing leaders from industry, government, environmental organizations and academia together to share information and develop innovative, common approaches to solving environmental problems (1991-present).
- Member, Board of Environmental Management of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management (1991-2003); Chair (1994-1997, 2000-2003).
- Member of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection's Chapter 21E Review Board which is charged with reviewing and recommending changes to M.G.L. Chapte 21E (the Massachusetts Superfund Statute(1991-1992).
- Fellow of the American College of Environmental Lawyers
- Massachusetts Hazardous Waste "Super-Lien" Outline for Massachusetts continuing Legal Education Program, 1983.
- Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Law Outline for Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education Program, 1983.
- "Tort Law Implications of Hazardous Waste Facilities" published in the "National Resources Lawyer" Vol. XVII, November 3, 1984.
- "Summary Outline - Evaluation and Selecting Environmental Compliance and Cleanup Contractors" published in "Proceedings" of the Fifth Annual Hazardous Materials Conference, 1987.
- "Right-To-Know: An Employers Perspective" (co-authored with Thomas Kanwit of Gaston & Snow) published in the handbook for the American Hospital Association's video teleconference on "Confronting the Risk: Hazardous Materials and Hospital Liability", 1987.
- "Environmental Enforcement Tools Affecting Real Estate Transfers" published in "Burdens of Environmental Regulation on Private Property Ownership and Business Transactions: Reasonable or Unreasonable?" by the American Bar Association's Standing Committee on Environmental Law, 1987.
- "Superfund Liability Traps Affecting Developers and Lenders" published in the ALI/ABA Course of Study materials for "Minimizing Liability for Hazardous Waste Management," 1988 and also in "Environmental Audits and Risk Assessments" published by the American Bar Association's Section of Real Property, Probate and Trust Law, 1988.
- "Toxic Torts Put CEO's at Risk" published in Chief Executive Magazine, No. 52 July/August, 1989.
- The environmental law chapter of Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education's Treatise entitled "Massachusetts Corporate Practice", 1992.
- "Summary of Key Provisions of 1992 Amendments to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 21E" published in "The Best of MCLE Journal", May, 1993.
- “Facilitating Brownfields Redevelopment Through the Strategic Use of Environmental Insurance” published in New England’s Environment, March/April, 2003.
Community Service Activities
- Trustee, and Member of Board of Governors, New England Aquarium, (1995 - 2002); Overseer (2002 – present); Chair of David B. Stone Award Committee (1997- present); Chair, Green Building Task Force (1999 - 2002).
- Trustee, Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary, (1990 - 1998).
- Overseer, Newton-Wellesley Hospital (1995 – Present)
- Trustee and Member of Board of Governors, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, (1987 - 1995).
- Chairman, Joint-Trustee Staff Committee, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, (1992 - 1994).
- Member, Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, (1993 - 1995).
- Director, Newell Enterprises, Inc., (1983 - 1987).
- Honorary Trustee, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, (1995-present).
- Member (Corporator) of Partners Healthcare System, Inc., (1999-present).
- Trustee, Mt. Keasarge Indian Museum, (1998 - 2002).