Meet the OGCs: Sarah Biran

Meet the OGCs: Sarah Biran

Sarah Biran got her start in employment law while working as a Big Law associate. Like many new lawyers, she enjoyed having the opportunity to gain experience in different practice areas offered by the firm – including securities litigation, regulatory compliance and employment. Later, as in-house counsel with Yale University, Sarah continued her generalist role, handling a wide range of issues, including employment, labor, and research contracts and compliance, as a member of the then-small, seven-person legal team. “I’ve always had a foot in the employment space, but it wasn’t until I relocated to Maryland and reconnected with a former colleague who had just opened a boutique employment firm that I decided to focus on employment and labor issues,” explains Sarah.

As to her reason why, Sarah is quick to answer: “I really enjoy the direct impact that my work has on people, in a setting of such critical significance to their livelihoods.” Sarah’s practice covers the full scope of the employer-employee relationship – from recruitment and hiring, to performance management, succession planning, terminations, and reorganization. “More than just interpreting the black letter law, it’s important to consider broader organizational objectives and stakeholder interests before recommending a solution,” says Sarah. “No matter the size or industry, all companies face a multitude of factors that play into any business decisions. My role as an OGC is to guide clients as they explore these concerns and devise solutions that will keep them on track for growth and success.”

Sarah’s commitment to handling legal issues with tact and diplomacy is something she learned while working in the general counsel’s office at Yale. “Anyone who has spent time in academia understands the unique dynamics that often come into play, and I learned firsthand about the importance of listening and responding with great care and sensitivity to all sides of an issue,” notes Sarah. These skills are perhaps more critical than ever given the challenges facing today’s employers, including pay transparency and wages, the shifting landscape of DEI, and the politicization of many issues as we enter another election year.

In addition to her advice and counsel practice, Sarah has significant experience handling agency claims at both the state and federal level (e.g., the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and similar state agencies), as well as managing disputes in the early stages through mediation and negotiated settlements. “Although my work with a client may begin by handling a single charge, it is gratifying when that same client reaches out again seeking general business advice – even just a simple gut check. Knowing that we’ve established a relationship with mutual trust that will continue beyond a single issue matters to me; I value working with clients over the long term and not just being a “hired gun.”

More about Sarah Biran
Sarah recently co-authored the article, Top 5 Employment Issues for 2024, and led a lively roundtable discussion, You Can’t Talk About That, Can You?!: The Challenging Nature and Scope of Workplace Conversations in 2024, at Consero’s General Counsel Forum on March 3, 2024. Outside the office, Sarah enjoys spending time with her family, including two cats and one furry Bernese Mountain dog, cooking, reading, swimming and tennis.

This publication should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion on any specific facts or circumstances not an offer to represent you. It is not intended to create, and receipt does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. The contents are intended for general informational purposes only, and you are urged to consult your attorney concerning any particular situation and any specific legal questions you may have. Pursuant to applicable rules of professional conduct, portions of this publication may constitute Attorney Advertising.

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