John Nevius
John Nevius (Courtesy photo)

John G. Nevius, an equity shareholder in Anderson Kill’s insurance recovery group, chair of its environmental law group and adjunct professor at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University, has died. He was 56.

Nevius passed away after a long battle with cancer at his hospice care in Shaftsbury, Vermont, on Aug. 12, his wife Alison Hess informed Anderson Kill.

Nevius, who joined Anderson Kill in 1995, was named a shareholder by 2004. He was also the founding chair of the firm’s environmental law group. He represented numerous Fortune 500 companies and tried and arbitrated a large number of complex disputes, generally involving environmental and technical insurance claims, during the course of his career.

“We are devastated by John’s loss,” said Robert M. Horkovich, Anderson Kill’s managing shareholder in a statement. “John not only was a terrific lawyer, he was a truly beloved colleague—committed, trustworthy, generous with his time and expertise. He zealously advocated for the firm’s clients. He was extraordinarily creative and forward-thinking in shaping arguments that would win them the coverage they deserved.”

Nevius served as the lead attorney in a suit in which a major energy supplier won coverage for property damage and business interruption losses stemming from the breakdown of a turbine generator. In a different case, he assisted in the recovery of more than $150 million for an electronics firm in environmental coverage and indemnity.

Nevius, who was committed to education, obtained his law degree from the Pace University School of Law along with a certificate in environmental law in 1996. He also earned an M.S.E. in civil/systems engineering and an M.S. in geology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1986 after completing his bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut in 1983.

A recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award, he was considered a popular teacher and mentor at the Pace University School of Law, his colleagues from Anderson Kill said. An academic in the areas of insurance coverage and environmental issues, he authored or co-authored over 80 articles during his career.

Prior to embarking on his law career, Nevius served as the senior project manager/hydrogeologist at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. At the EPA, he provided technical and enforcement support to Region III’s Criminal Enforcement Branch, the inspector general and the FBI. He was the author of two Records of Decision, testified as an expert witness in federal court and received an EPA National Excellence in RCRA Enforcement award.

Nevius is survived by his wife Hess, his two daughters, Anne and Kathleen, and his sisters Nancy Bacon, Christy Nevius and Mary Lansing.

“He was dedicated to his wife and daughters, to this firm, to his work and to a mission to hold insurance companies to the promises they make to policyholders,” Horkovich said. “He will be sorely missed at this firm, at Pace and throughout the insurance bar.”