Sarah R. Bennett Associate

Sarah advises electric and gas utilities in complex regulatory litigation before state utility commissions. Her experience includes proceedings involving certificates of public convenience and necessity for generation and transmission projects, integrated resource plans, rate increases, and affiliates approvals. Sarah assists clients with every facet of an administrative proceeding, from initial filings through discovery and public hearings.

Sarah also advises utility clients in emerging markets in the energy industry, representing utility clients in first-of-its-kind proceedings in Virginia on grid modernization and battery energy storage systems.

Outside of the regulated space, Sarah dedicates her time to representing individuals on a pro bono basis. She co-leads the VCU Health System Medical-Legal Partnership with McGuireWoods and Dominion Energy, a partnership that offers free legal advice and representation for eligible patients and families.  She is also a member of McGuireWoods’ Richmond office Pro Bono Committee. 

Before joining McGuireWoods, Sarah served as a law clerk to the Honorable John A. Gibney, Jr., of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. While in law school, Sarah served as the Manuscripts Editor for the University of Richmond Law Review and Chancellor of the Walter Scott McNeill Law Honor Society. She graduated first in her law school class.

Experience

Representation of an electric utility in proceedings involving certificates of public convenience and necessity for generation projects, including for over 1,000 MW of utility-scale solar projects and 70 MW of utility-scale energy storage.

Representation of an electric utility in multiple grid modernization proceedings, with a focus on advanced metering infrastructure (“AMI”), transportation electrification, distributed energy resource management systems, and cost-benefit analyses. 

Representation of an electric utility in first-of-its-kind proceeding seeking approval of utility-scale battery energy storage systems.

Representation of a major electric utility in multiple integrated resource planning proceedings in Virginia and North Carolina.

Representation of a major gas local distribution company in base rate proceeding.

Representation of an electric utility in annual generation, distribution, and environmental rate adjustment clause proceedings.

Representation of pro bono client in federal habeas appeal, drafting merits briefing and presenting oral argument before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Representation of pro bono clients in education advocacy proceedings in local school districts.

Representation of an electric utility in multiple regulatory rulemaking proceedings, including energy storage regulations.

  • University of Richmond School of Law, JD, summa cum laude, Order of the Coif, Manuscripts Editor, University of Richmond Law Review, 2015
  • The College of William & Mary, BS, Chemistry, 2008

President, Board of Directors, Rebuilding Together Richmond

Member, Administrative Law Section, Virginia State Bar

Member, John Marshall American Inn of Court

Member, Richmond Bar Association

Leadership Metro Richmond, Class of 2022

  • Virginia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia

Recipient, Pro Bono Service Honor Roll, Virginia Access to Justice Commission, 2022

Selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch, Administrative / Regulatory Law, 2021-2023

Recipient, McGuireWoods Excellence Award, 2020

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