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For Immediate Release: May 25, 2017
Media Contact: Denise Nix • 213-787-2552 •
LOS ANGELES — We are pleased to announce that two Best Best & Krieger LLP partners were included in this year’s Daily Journal Top Women Lawyers list. Michelle Ouellette and Kelly Salt were each recognized for their recent professional achievements for their public agency clients — and the communities they serve. Inclusion on this list of 100 is an honor, as they are among California’s best and most prestigious female attorneys.
Ouellette, who was recognized earlier this year by the publication with the California Lawyer Attorney of the Year Award, also received this honor for environmental law successes. This includes the recent appellate court victory in the “Cadiz cases.” On behalf of Santa Margarita Water District, Ouellette led the team that won six challenges brought under the California Environmental Quality Act to a groundwater pumping proposal in the Mojave Desert. Her work establishing habitat conservation plans, which she calls her “true love,” was also cited by the publication. These plans preserve habitat for threatened species while allowing much-needed development to proceed. Ouellette has had some additional recent victories, including overcoming CEQA challenges to a residential project in Santa Ana and the Mid County Parkway project in Riverside County.
Salt, already “long a sought-after expert on municipal issues from water to finance,” the newspaper noted, was recognized in part for her Proposition 218 proficiency — the law that was at the heart of the groundbreaking San Juan Capistrano appellate decision. In that decision, the 4th District Court of Appeal dealt a blow to tiered water rates, which were an important tool for water suppliers in water conservation efforts. She filed an amicus brief in the case, and is now working pro bono on a constitutional amendment to address the legal challenges to the tiers. Salt was also honored for her work addressing critical water infrastructure needs. “One of the best things about working with public agencies is you always feel like you’re working toward something positive to help communities,” Salt told the Daily Journal.


Best Best & Krieger LLP is a national law firm that focuses on environmental, business, education, municipal and telecommunications law for public agency and private clients. With more than 170 attorneys, the law firm has nine offices nationwide, including Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit or follow @BBKlaw on Twitter.

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