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Sarah Smith is a Special Counsel with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System in Washington, DC — with an expertise in commercial real estate, construction and business transactions. Since January 2013, Sarah has provided advice in connection with real estate, construction and general business contract matters.  Sarah leads negotiations in connection with settlement of contract disputes and structuring of agreements. She also oversees outside counsel and consulting experts in various matters. Sarah’s responsibilities also include briefing senior management, the general counsel and members of the Board in connection with contract and policy matters. Sarah brings great insights to position at the Fed that she attributes to the outside experiences she gained before starting there which included spending 10 years at Venable law firm. Sarah graduated from the University of Michigan with a double major in Political Science and Communications, before attending law school at Emory University. She made partner at Venable LLP where she worked for 10 years before transitioning to her career with the Fed. She is a dedicated mother of three with a passion for giving back to the community.


  • What the Federal Reserve does
  • Why it’s so fulfilling to work at the Fed as a lawyer with an expertise in commercial real estate
  • How working in government as a lawyer — differs from working in private practice at a big law firm
  • How Sarah honed important skills as a waitress that she uses today
  • How to use your first jobs to help you pick and choose what you might like to do later in your career
  • Why it is so important to get involved in community service
  • How your challenges in life can also turn into great opportunities
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