Sarah Vandergriff Kelley, a New Orleans native, is a licensed attorney whose practice in charter school law is nationally recognized. Serving as LAPCS’ Legal and Policy Director since 2011, Sarah has assisted in major litigation efforts to secure funding for state-authorized charter schools as well as assisted in drafting charter school legislation and policies at the state and local levels. Additionally, Sarah served as the primary author for two legal handbooks that summarized applicable charter school law, policies, and best practices for charter school governing boards and administrative staff. She regularly facilitates training sessions in the areas of education law, employment best practices, governance, and the Louisiana Code of Ethics.
Prior to joining LAPCS, Sarah served as a Commerical Litigation Associate at Phelps Dunbar, LLP, and earned a dual J.D./M.A. from Loyola University New Orleans, focusing on religious studies, constitutional law, and international law with an emphasis on human rights. Sarah has been recognized as a “2017 Leader in Law” by New Orleans City Business Magazine, a “2017 Top 40 Under 40 Professional” by New Orleans Gambit Weekly, a “2016 Good Apple” by Louisiana Appleseed, and was the recipient of the 2018 “Barney D. Mintz Leadership Award” for the Southeastern region of the Anti-Defamation League. Sarah has also been a selected participant in various leadership programs including the Aspen Institute, Leadership Louisiana, and the Loyola Institute of Politics, and has served on numerous non-profit boards and young professional advisory committees including the National World War II Museum and the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra.
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