About The Firm

Stephen Thorn is the founder of Thorn & Associates LLC. His practice covers green and sustainability law, energy law, and environmental law.



Prior to founding the firm, Mr. Thorn was an Associate Regional Counsel at U.S. EPA, Region 5 (handling matters in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan) and an environmental attorney at a large Chicago-based law firm. As an environmental lawyer, he was involved in several hundred enforcement matters across the entire spectrum of environmental statutes such as the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), the Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act (EPCRA), the Clean Air Act, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA aka Superfund), the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), and the Federal Insecticide Rodenticide and Fungicide Act (FIFRA). In particular, while at EPA he served as the attorney liaison with the RCRA Subtitle C (hazardous waste) inspectors, assisting them in interpreting regulations and ascertaining whether conditions observed during inspections constituted violations. He served on the EPCRA enforcement workgroup, helping the agency draft information requests regarding possible environmental releases. He has also received numerous awards. The underground storage tank compliance team to which he was the assigned attorney was awarded a National Notable Achievement Award and was nominated for a Federal Employee of the Year award. Likewise, he was the attorney assigned to a workgroup that rewrote the Clean Air Act Confidential Business Information Manual for Region 5 and was also nominated for a Federal Employee of the Year award.

In private practice, his practice was similarly broad. He represented clients in CERCLA, EPCRA and CAA matters and matters before the Illinois Pollution Control Board. In addition, he has assisted clients in applying for federal and state environmental permits. He also has assisted clients in developing ISO 14001 environmental management systems. Furthermore, he has gained expertise in green building and sustainability. He has been designated as a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional (LEED® AP) by the United States Green Building Council.

Mr. Thorn has a strong technical background. He received an undergraduate degree in chemistry from Yale University and a Master of Science in chemistry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He also has a Master of Science in natural resources from the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources & Environment.

Mr. Thorn has extensive experience teaching environmental law-based classes.  Mr. Thorn is an adjunct professor of law at Chicago-Kent School of Law and teaches Advanced Legal Writing: Environmental Law.  At the University of Michigan, he was a graduate instructor for classes in Environmental Law; Land Use Law and Policy; and Environmental Health and Law. He also has been an instructor at DePaul University. 

Board Roles, Memberships, Associations

Teaching Experience & Guest Speaking Appearances