Ellen Spitalnik, a Fulbright Scholar and graduate of Cornell University and Columbia Law School, was an attorney posted to various offices at EPA headquarters for over two decades. Initially recruited to EPA by the Office of General Counsel, she served as an attorney-advisor at EPA's enforcement office and special assistant for international affairs to the Assistant Administrator for the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response. During the 1980s she was responsible for prosecution of nationally significant Superfund cases such as the cleanup of Times Beach, Missouri in collaboration with the Department of Justice's Environmental Enforcement Division. During the 1990s she also worked as an environmental law consultant responsible for advising China's environment agency on development of waste laws. She then served as the Pollution Control Attorney for the Forest Service in Alaska, based at USDA's Office of Regional Counsel in San Francisco until 2006. An environmental consultant, Spitalnik currently serves on the Columbia University Journal of Environmental Law's Board of Directors and the Environmental Quality Committee of the City of El Cerrito, California, where she lives. She was also a member of the executive committee of the Sierra Club's San Francisco Bay Chapter.