Member Information

Thomas Lawrence Sansonetti

Holland & Hart LLP

2020 Carey Avenue
Cheyenne, WY82001

After starting my own solo practice in Gillette, Wyoming in 1976, I began concentrating on environmental law while representing the many energy companies coming into the Powder River Basin of NE Wyoming. I was elected to two terms as the Wyoming GOP State Chairman in the mid-80's and then spent the last two years of the Reagan administration as the Associate Solicitor for Energy & Resources at the Department of the Interior. I then served as the Chief of Staff to Wyoming Congressman Craig Thomas before being nominated by President George H.W. Bush to be the Solicitor for the Department of the Interior in 1990. I returned to Wyoming in 1993 after being recruited by Holland & Hart to work in its Cheyenne office. With the exception of serving four years in the George W. Bush administration as the Assistant Attorney General for the Environment & Natural Resources Division at the Department of Justice, I have been with Holland & Hart ever since. My practice revolves around environmental permitting for energy projects throughout the Rocky Mountain states, protecting those permits in federal and state courts and representing clients before federal agencies in Washington, DC. where I have an office as well as in Denver.

Work Phone:

EPA Region:
Region 8 – (CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, and WY)
Year of induction:
University of Virginia, B.A. Foreign Affairs (1971) University of Virginia, M.B.A. Darden School of Business (1973) Washington & Lee University School of Law, J.D. (1976)
Colorado District of Columbia Wyoming
Court Admissions:
U.S. Supreme Court U.S. Courts of Appeal for the DC Circuit Federal Circuit First Circuit Second Circuit Eighth Circuit Ninth Circuit Tenth Circuit All State District and Supreme Courts in Wyoming and Colorado
Professional Societies and Organizations:
American Bar Association Wyoming State Bar Association Colorado State Bar Association The Federalist Society American College of Environmental Lawyers American Law Institute
Other Environmental Career Experience:
Associate Solicitor for Energy & Resources, Department of the Interior (1987-1989) Solicitor, Department of the Interior, (1990-1993) Chairman, President's Advisory Commission on Western Water (1993) Assistant Attorney General, Environment & Natural Resources Division, Department of Justice (2001-2005)
Representative Publications:
Researched, drafted and signed thirteen Solicitor M-Opinions while serving as Solicitor in the George H.W. Bush Administration at the Department of the Interior
Illustrative Projects:
Have permitted coal mines, underground oil and natural gas pipelines and provided legal advice on numerous oil and gas plays in the Rocky Mountain region. Have advised numerous clients on the necessary environmental compliance for the clean up of oil and mercury spills.
Citations of Major Published Cases:
BedRoc Limited v. United States, 541 U.S. 176 (2004) argued before the U.S. Supreme Court in this case wherein the Court decided sand and gravel are not valuable minerals reserved to the United States under the Pittman Underground Water Act of 1919.