After several years in Baron & Budd’s appellate section, shareholder Carla Burke Pickrel joined the Environmental Litigation Group in 2004. In her time with the Group, she has represented hundreds of public entities — villages, towns, cities, utilities, school districts, and states.
As one of the pioneers of the Group, she has worked to develop legal strategy for cases arising from MTBE, atrazine, and PCE contamination of drinking water supplies. Carla has played a critical part in nationwide litigation arising from MTBE contamination on behalf of more than 200 water providers in more than 20 states. She also played a major role in a recent nationwide class action settlement for providers whose water supplies are contaminated with atrazine, an agricultural chemical.
Putting her experience to work in new areas is an energizing part of Carla’s work. She is currently representing school districts whose buildings are contaminated with PCBs, chemical compounds found in some construction materials. This channels Carla’s deep respect for all those who work in the nation’s public schools. “My mother worked for public schools for thirty years. She felt that she was a part of her students’ and parents’ lives and took that responsibility seriously. So do I.”
While in law school at Southern Methodist University, Carla was on a team that successfully represented a disabled man whose lack of medical treatment while in the custody of the Dallas county jail amounted to cruel and unusual punishment. After graduation, she returned to SMU as an adjunct clinical instructor of law to brief and argue the appeal of Lawson v. Dallas County, before the United States Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.
Carla’s work is motivated by the results she sees at Baron & Budd. “The work we do helps entire communities. Baron & Budd makes people’s everyday lives better,” she says.
- Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law (J.D. 1999)
- Southern Methodist University (M.A. 1994, B.A. 1991)
Bar & Court Admissions:
- New York
- United States Supreme Court
- United States Court of Appeals–5th Circuit
- United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
- American Association for Justice
- Bar Association of the Fifth Federal Court
- College of the State Bar of Texas
- Dallas Bar Association (Fellow)
- Dallas Trial Lawyers Association
- National Trial Lawyers: Top 100
- Public Justice
- Texas Trial Lawyers Association
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