Moore & Van Allen Law Firm, Attorneys
Practice Areas
  • J.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2007, with honors
  • B.A., Duke University, 2004
  • North Carolina, 2007
  • South Carolina, 2008
100 North Tryon Street
Suite 4700
Charlotte, NC 28202-4003

Mary Katherine H. Stukes

News & Events
Professional Affiliations

Mary Katherine Stukes is co-head of the firm’s Environmental practice. She advises clients on environmental issues involved in all types of business transactions, as well as regulatory compliance issues and environmental litigation.

Mary Katherine regularly leads real estate developers, governmental entities, and non-profit corporations through the process of obtaining Brownfields agreements for redevelopment of contaminated properties. She negotiates agreements with environmental agencies and counsels clients on eligibility, assessment, tax benefits, and effective structuring of associated real estate and financing transactions. Her projects include agreements for the development of various multifamily residential, hotel, office, governmental, hospitality, community development and industrial projects, including high-density developments in the urban cores of the major cities in the Carolinas, a minor league baseball stadium, a free-standing emergency department, a police station, a large-scale youth soccer complex, a national craft brewery, and other adaptive reuse projects.

In addition, Mary Katherine helps manufacturers, real estate developers, lenders, utilities, renewable energy companies, automotive dealerships, local governments, and other clients find creative solutions in real estate, financing, and corporate transactions involving environmental risk. She routinely negotiates agreements to allocate environmental responsibility and risk between multiple parties and also provides support in due diligence reviews and assistance with permit transfers on such transactions.

She also counsels lenders, manufacturers, and other corporate clients on a broad range of environmental risk and compliance issues. Her work in this area includes release investigation and remediation oversight, incident closure, environmental permitting, audits, reporting, and self-disclosure, responses to CERCLA (Superfund) Section 104 information requests, participation in CERCLA potentially responsible party (PRP) negotiations, appeals of agency orders, defense of notices of violation and enforcement actions, startup and shutdown requirements, waste and materials handling and disposal practices, and other aspects of regulatory compliance across a variety of state and federal regulatory programs.

Mary Katherine is an experienced litigator in federal, state, and administrative courts. She has represented clients in disputes over contamination, asbestos-containing materials, underground storage tanks, landfills, water and air quality, and other environmental issues.

“She’s practical, knows the substance very well, and could get down to the issues quickly,” one of Mary Katherine’s clients told Chambers USA, which develops rankings using in-depth interviews and objective research. Another client praised her ability to navigate what can be a complex regulatory landscape: “Mary Katherine helped break down the walls and get the process moving.”

Speaking Engagements

  • Panelist, Strategies to Incorporate Brownfields Into Local Sites & Building Initiatives, North Carolina Economic Development Association Triad Networking Luncheon, January 2020
  • Moderator, Brownfields Development in the Region, Joint Program of Environmental Law Sections of NC, SC, and GA, May 2018
  • Vapor Intrusion: Legal Aspects, Charlotte Area Environmental Breakfast Club, March 2018
  • DEQ's Risk Calculator: What It Is and How You Can Use It at Contaminated Sites, N.C. Chamber Environmental Compliance Conference, Durham, NC, February 2018
  • When Things Go Wrong, South Carolina Association of Special Purpose Districts (SCSPD) Conference, October 2017
  • The Use of Legal Privileges to Protect Important and Sensitive Documents From Disclosure, Air & Waste Management Association Annual Conference, Raleigh, NC, June 2015
  • Odor Nuisance Lawsuits: The Next Wave of Litigation Against Manufacturers, Air & Waste Management Association Annual Conference, Raleigh, NC, June 2015


Of Note

  • Selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America for Environmental Law, 2020
  • Chambers USA – North Carolina, Environmental Law, 2017-2020
  • Selected for inclusion in Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite list, 2015-2016, 2018-2020

Professional Affiliations

  • North Carolina Bar Association Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Law Section, Council Member, Newsletter Co-Editor, Annual Meeting CLE Co-Planner
  • Community Link, Board of Directors; Marketing & Development Committee, Former Co-Chair
  • Myers Park Presbyterian Church, Stewardship Committee & Former Annual Campaign Co-Chair
  • Mint Museum Auxiliary