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SharonBrown

She | Her | Hers

Partner

"I'm passionate about helping families by providing safe and accessible housing to all, and I'm proud to be part of the solution to housing inequality."

Overview

Biography

Sharon serves as a co-chair of Barclay Damon's Public Finance Practice Area. With over 20 years of legal experience, she primarily concentrates on the federal tax treatment of tax-exempt bond financings and serves as bond counsel, underwriters' counsel, special-tax counsel, and borrower’s counsel on a wide variety of public finance transactions, including single-family housing, power and energy, and 501(c)(3) financings for higher education, health care, and cultural institutions. She has extensive transactional experience with multi-family housing financings involving low-income-housing tax credits, historical tax credits, and a variety of issuer and government subsidies and incentives.

She counsels state and local governmental entities, financial institutions, and not-for-profit organizations on a variety of public finance tax issues. She has worked on transactions involving multi-modal structures, complex refundings, derivative products, multiple-year tranches, draw-down bonds, recycled volume cap bonds, private placements, limited public offerings, general-obligation bonds, and revenue bonds.

Sharon additionally advises issuers and borrowers on IRS examinations of tax-exempt bond transactions and post-issuance tax compliance.

Sharon's experience as a tax attorney has given her the ability to simplify complex tax concepts, making her an essential resource for her clients. Additionally, Sharon's pleasant demeanor is a distinctive element of her client relationships.

In addition to her own practice, Sharon serves as the firm's diversity partner and as chair of the Diversity Partner Committee. In her role, she leads the firm's diversity, equity, and inclusion initiative, authoring innovative policies and advising firm leadership on effectively recruiting and using the productive talents, energy, and creativity of a diverse workforce for maximum organizational effectiveness and the best use of intellectual capital.

Outside Barclay Damon, Sharon is a federal income-tax adjunct professor at New York Law School.

Bar Associations

  • American Bar Association
  • American Bar Foundation, Fellow
  • New York State Bar Association Committee on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Member and Events Subcommittee Chair; Task Force on Racism, Social Equity, and the Law Member and Housing Committee Co-Chair; Women in Law Section Executive Board Member

Selected Memberships & Affiliations

  • National Association of Bond Lawyers
  • New York State Association for Affordable Housing
  • New York State Government Finance Officers Association
  • National Association of Women Lawyers
  • Women in Housing and Finance, Inc.
Experience

Representative Experience

  • Serves as tax counsel in connection with the development and preservation of thousands of affordable-housing units in mixed-use and mixed-income developments across the United States that are financed with tax-exempt bonds and 4 percent low-income-housing tax credits; backed by traditional-bank letters of credit; or involve Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac credit enhancement, HUD risk-sharing program insurance, derivative products through public offerings, and the direct loan or purchase of bonds.
  • Served as tax counsel to a state and local housing-finance agency in connection with the creation of a multi-family tax-exempt warehousing facility that provides recycling and bond-volume cap preservation.
  • Serves as tax counsel to not-for-profit sponsors, managing members, and owner entities in the development, preservation, and financing of affordable residential rental projects containing units for supportive housing, involving 9 percent low-income tax credits and various other subsidies.
  • Serves as tax counsel to state and local governments in the issuance of tax-exempt bonds for capital projects.
  • Serves as tax counsel to issuers and borrowers in financings for 501(c)(3) educational, health care, and cultural institutions.
  • Serves as tax counsel on pooled bond programs for a state financing authority.
  • Serves as tax counsel in connection with IRS audits.
  • Serves as pro bono tax counsel in connection with business formation and application for 501(c)(3) status.

Prior Experience

  • Hawkins Delafield & Wood LLP, Tax Group

Selected Community Activities

  • New York Law School, Adjunct Professor
  • Nazareth Regional High School, Board of Trustees Chair
  • The Episcopal Diocese of Long Island, Conference Committee Chair
  • Internal Revenue Service, Advisory Council Member
  • CERTIFI by Mercy College Women in Leadership Certificate Program, Advisory Board Member

Selected Honors

  • The Best Lawyers in America®: Public Finance Law, 2023–2024
  • The National Black Lawyers Top 100, 2020, 2021, 2022
  • Law360, Influential Women in Tax Law, 2019
  • New York State Bar Association, Empire State Counsel Honoree, 2019
  • The Bond Buyer, Trailblazing Women in Public Finance Award, 2018
Knowledge

Selected Speaking Engagements

  • New York Law School 16th Annual Tax Lawyering Workshop, "Tax Opinions: Best Practices for Establishing the Factual Basis"
  • New York Law School, "Diversity in Tax Practice"
  • Bonadio Group's College & University Educational Breakfast Series at Clarkson University, "Qualified 501(c)(3) Bonds: Post-Issuance Tax Compliance"
  • New York State Association for Affordable Housing Annual New York City Conference, “Tax-Exempt Bonds”
  • New York Law School Summer International Tax Program, “Introduction to Sales and Use Taxes in the United States, VAT in France, and the European Union and Sales and Excises Taxes in the United States: A Comparative Tax Law Discussion”

Selected Media

Selected Alerts & Blog Posts

Featured Media

Alerts

Fourth Department Finds Language in 1980 Statute Is Gender Neutral for Purposes of Child Victims Act

Alerts

Priority of Federal Tax Lien on Personal Property: Secured Lender vs. IRS

Alerts

COVID-19 Business Interruption Update: New York High Court Affirms in Favor of Insurer

Alerts

USFWS Introduces General Permit for Bald and Golden Eagle Incidental Take

Alerts

ORES Executive Director Issues First Denial of Section 94-C Permit Application Following Applicant's Partial Loss of Site Control

Alerts

New Details About OPWDD Spending in the New York State FY 2025 Executive Budget

We're Growing in DC!

We’re excited to announce Barclay Damon’s combination with Washington DC–based Shapiro, Lifschitz & Schram. SLS’s 10 lawyers, three paralegals, and four administrative staff will join Barclay Damon while maintaining their current office in DC’s central business district. Our clients will benefit from SLS’s corporate, real estate, finance, and construction litigation experience and national energy-industry profile, and their clients from our full range of services.

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