Tom C. Clark II, environmental lawyer, dies at 59

Tom C. Clark II
environmental lawyer

Tom C. Clark II, a lawyer who worked for 24 years with the Justice Department’s Environmental Enforcement Section, died Nov. 23 at his home in Annandale, Va. He was 59.

He had cancer, said his wife, Cheryl Clark.

Mr. Clark was the son of former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark and the grandson and namesake of Tom C. Clark, a former U.S. Attorney General and associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

At the Justice Department, Mr. Clark was lead counsel in a number of court cases that led to environmental protection measures. Among them was a case involving the Bunker Hill Superfund site in northern Idaho in which he helped the federal government recover millions of dollars in the form of hazardous waste cleanup work and natural resource damages.

Mr. Clark was lead counsel in a Louisiana case against Marine Shale Processors that resulted in $7 million in civil penalties — applied to cleanup efforts — and an order prohibiting future waste-related activities.

Tom Campbell Clark II was born in Dallas. He lived in Northern Virginia during his teenage years and was a 1971 graduate of J.E.B. Stuart High School in Falls Church. He graduated from Duke University in 1975 and from Golden Gate University law school in San Francisco in 1982.

He was a lawyer in San Francisco before joining the Justice Department in Washington in 1989.

Among the highlights of Mr. Clark’s career was his work as the lead government attorney in a class action lawsuit involving the Department of the Interior’s management of individual Indian trust accounts dating to the 19th century. He reached more than 60 agreements between Indian groups and the U.S. government.

His awards included the John Marshall Award, the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service, and the Presidential Rank Award for Distinguished Service.

Survivors include his wife of 32 years, Cheryl Kessler Clark, and three daughters, Whitney Clark, Taylor Clark and Paige Clark, all of Annandale; his father, Ramsey Clark of New York City; and a sister Ronda Clark of New York City.

— Bart Barnes

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