Office of Environmental Adjudication director set to retire


INDIANAPOLIS – Governor Eric J. Holcomb announced today that Mary Davidsen, the state’s longtime chief environmental law judge, plans to retire at the end of the year. Judge Davidsen has served in her role as director of the Office of Environmental Adjudication (OEA) since being appointed in 2003.

Under Davidsen’s leadership, OEA has concluded more than 2,300 cases, facilitated resolution of more than 90% of its cases without resorting to extensive litigation efforts, and has not been reversed for avoidable error on judicial review.  OEA also provides mediation services to cases involving other Indiana state agencies and the citizens they regulate.

“Judge Davidsen has had an incredible tenure dealing with often complex cases involving environmental concerns. She dedicated her career to this important work and it’s an honor to recognize her as a colleague,” said Gov. Holcomb.

OEA provides independent resolution of disputed decisions rendered by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM). Issues decided by OEA involve permitting and enforcement of air, land and water laws, and the Excess Liability Trust Fund (ELTF), and examples include cases concerning electric utility fly ash ponds, community sanitary sewer and water supplies, confined feeding operations, and ELFT reimbursements claimed for site cleanups.

“It has been the greatest honor of my legal professional life to serve Hoosier citizens across the state for 20 years,” Judge Davidsen said.  “The challenges of providing a fair, efficient forum to hear the first level of legal challenges to decisions made by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) could not have evolved as smoothly without the commitment of the parties to advocating their positions.  I am incredibly proud of the work being done by our state and will be forever grateful to those who continue to fulfill the needs of our communities by improving the environmental conditions for Hoosiers.”

Judge Davidsen also has served in leadership positions with the Sagamore American Inn of Court, the environmental section of the Indiana State Bar Association and assisted the Indianapolis Bar Association’s pro-bono initiative to connect qualified estate attorney volunteers with indigent hospice patients with urgent needs for representation for end-of-life concerns.

The process to replace Judge Davidsen will commence before the end of the year.