honors + affiliations
Vice Chair, Nuclear Energy Committee, American Bar Association Section of Public Utility, Communications and Transportation Law
Member, Energy Bar Association
Member, Women in Nuclear
Member, Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia
Member, Women’s Council on Energy and the Environment
Listed, Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business (2006–2013)
Listed, Chambers Global: The World's Leading Lawyers (2007, 2009–2010, 2012–2013)
Listed, The Legal 500 United States (2012–2013)
Member, Law360 Energy Editorial Advisory Board (2011)
- District of Columbia
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
- Washington, D.C.
1111 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20004-2541
Kathryn M. Sutton is the leader of Morgan Lewis’s Energy Practice. As a partner in the practice, Ms. Sutton represents clients with respect to the full panoply of regulatory and adjudicatory issues surrounding the operation of commercial nuclear reactors—from the front end of the fuel cycle to the tail end of the fuel cycle.
Ms. Sutton is currently involved in licensing a new generation of nuclear power plants in the United States and internationally, serving as counsel in matters involving the issuance of design certifications, combined operating licenses, early site permits, limited work authorizations, and initial Part 50 operating licenses. In 2012, Ms. Sutton assisted two clients in obtaining “combined licenses” from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). She also represented one of the first applicants to successfully obtain an early site permit from the NRC in 2007, an action prefatory to the construction and operation of new reactors of advanced design. Additionally, Ms. Sutton serves as regulatory counsel to a reactor vendor that is preparing a design certification application as well as to several other utilities that either have filed combined operating license applications under 10 C.F.R. part 52 or are seeking to complete preexisting initial licensing actions under 10 C.F.R. part 50.
Equally important to the future of nuclear generation in the United States, Ms. Sutton routinely advises clients on the content and implementation of the NRC’s license renewal regulations, including the full array of environmental issues encompassing attendant National Environmental Policy Act obligations and Coastal Zone Management Act requirements. In particular, she has represented applicants that have successfully renewed the operating licenses of nearly 30 nuclear plants, each for an additional 20-year term.
Ms. Sutton also advises nuclear clients on the full range of issues involving current term operations. Representative client activities in this area include construction permit recapture, initial plant licensing, plant restarts from regulatory shutdowns, performance improvement planning, license transfers, regulatory exemptions, and license amendment proceedings. As part of these efforts, she represents clients before the NRC Atomic Safety and Licensing Board in adjudicatory proceedings and in investigations by the NRC Office of Investigations. Further, she has advised an international utility about U.S. regulatory initiatives, including those related to “safety culture” and “safety conscious work environment,” and the new reactor licensing framework established by the NRC.
Prior to joining Morgan Lewis in 2005, Ms. Sutton was a partner at the Washington, D.C., office of a leading Chicago law firm.
Ms. Sutton is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
- Georgetown University Law Center, 1988, J.D., Cum Laude
- Pennsylvania State University, 1985, B.A., Summa Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa