Partner - On January 1, 2017, Judson (“Jud”) H. Turner joined the firm, Gilbert, Harrell, Sumerford & Martin P.C. (“GHSM”) and manages the firm’s Atlanta office. Mr. Turner’s practice is focused primarily in the areas of environmental permitting and compliance, regulatory advocacy, public policy development and government relations.
In the fall of 2016, Mr. Turner completed 10 years of public service to the State of Georgia in various senior legal and management posts, including service as Director of the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (“EPD”) from 2012-2016. After Mr. Turner’s return to private practice, in addition to representing a broad array of clients with diverse environmental regulatory matters, he has helped guide a team of environmental and legal consultants regarding issues involved in the renewal of a RCRA permit for a complex environmental legacy site with continued ongoing manufacturing operations. His work to procure water withdrawal permits for clients who seek to convert an old rock quarry into a municipal raw water storage facility required the successful resolution of water policy questions of first impression for EPD. Mr. Turner also represents clients subject to a variety of air quality regulations, including negotiations over the EPD’s response to evolving air toxics standards and human health risk assessments.
Mr. Turner also served as Special Assistant Attorney General, focused primarily on the United States Supreme Court equitable apportionment case, Florida v. Georgia, that tried before the Special Master, Ralph Lancaster in November of 2016. Mr. Turner taught water law during the spring 2017 semester at the University of Georgia School of Law, where he was a practitioner-in-residence for the 2016-17 academic year.
While EPD Director, Mr. Turner was active in the Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) and served as Region IV Representative on the Executive Committee, the governing body of ECOS. In addition to his time at EPD, Mr. Turner also served as Director of the Governor’s Office of Interagency Coordination and Management of Water Resources, a position newly established to coordinate and manage activities related to the state’s defense of the original action matter filed by the state of Florida against the State of Georgia in the United States Supreme Court seeking an equitable apportionment of the waters of the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint Basin.
From 2005 to 2008, Mr. Turner served initially as Deputy and then Executive Counsel to Governor Sonny Perdue. His practice included counsel to the Governor on wide array of executive branch legal matters, including issues related to the state budget process, judicial appointments, government procurement, education policy, retirement pensions and other post-employment benefits, ethics and litigation. Prior to service as Counsel to Governor Perdue, Mr. Turner served as General Counsel to the Georgia Department of Education. He began his law practice as an associate at Bradley Arant Rose & White LLP in Birmingham, Alabama.
Mr. Turner was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate in economics and political science from the University of Georgia and earned his law degree from the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia. While at UGA, Mr. Turner served as President of the Student Government Association.
In recognition of his broad experience in the areas of environmental regulation and policy, in 2016, Georgia Trend Magazine named Mr. Turner one of its 100 Most Influential Georgians. Mr. Turner was also selected as one of Georgia Trend’s 40 Under 40 in 2008 and named one of the UGA Alumni Association’s Inaugural 40 Under 40 in 2011. He is a native of Albany, Georgia and resides in Griffin with his wife Courtney and two children.