Photo of Sherrie L. Farrell

Sherrie L. Farrell Member

Sherrie L. Farrell is the Office Managing Member for the Firm's Detroit office, and Chair of the Firm's Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Ms. Farrell acts as lead counsel in various commercial matters including partnership disputes, lease disputes, breach of contract and bankruptcy disputes. Her previous career as an award-winning public relations and crisis communications professional has become an integral tool in counseling clients on a wide array of commercial issues. She has provided counsel on litigation risk management, discovery management, real estate project management for real estate interests and public policy and litigation issues involving local governments. Ms. Farrell approaches each client matter as a partner working with the client to advance a solution or business objective.

Ms. Farrell has significant experience serving as a National Coordinating Counsel. She serves as National Discovery Counsel for a Fortune 25 manufacturer in asbestos and other toxic tort litigation. Ms. Farrell also had the primary responsibility to develop and defend Fortune 25 corporate fact and expert witnesses in national tort litigation. She also has represented manufacturers, closely-held corporations, auto suppliers and construction companies in both litigated and non-litigated commercial matters.

In her corporate bankruptcy and business restructuring practice, Ms. Farrell’s representation includes global automotive suppliers in customer, vendor and supplier Chapter 11 bankruptcies; creditors in Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy; a state airport authority; construction companies; and troubled suppliers. She also has represented other interested parties including staffing corporations, financial institutions and other regional and national businesses in commercial and bankruptcy-related litigation, preferences, creditors’ rights matters, out-of-court restructurings, loan workouts, and issues involving the UCC. 

Ms. Farrell served as the head of the Firm’s first Cybersecurity group. Her extensive experience in the data security area includes drafting data security plans for a board of directors of an insurance company; managing data breaches and incidents for, among others, health company, insurance company, and auto manufacturing supplier. Ms. Farrell has drafted data security policies for clients including enterprise wide data security plans, incident response plans and computer and internet access policies.  In addition to authoring several articles on this topic, she’s also presented to a local corporate secretaries organization, an auto manufacturer and was featured on a corporate counsel panel focused on cybersecurity.

In addition to providing legal counsel, she provides counsel to area businesses on regional government and public policy issues and has experience serving the City of Detroit during three different mayoral administrations.

Ms. Farrell recently was featured in Law360's Minority Powerbrokers series, named to the 2019 Lawyer of Color’s Inaugural Nation’s Best List, and recognized as one of Savoy Magazine’s Most Influential Black Lawyers (2018, 2015). She has been recognized as a Michigan Super Lawyer since 2014 and named in The Best Lawyers in America© since 2013.


  • Represents partners in a closely-held entity in an arbitration involving issues including tax treatment and goodwill following the sale of a multimillion dollar business.
  • Represented a partner in a complex partnership dispute and business wind down that included allegations of breach of a non-compete and defamation.
  • Represented a “mega-church” in a commercial lease dispute.
  • Represented a celebrated entertainer in a commercial matter involving film rights.
  • Represented major creditor in successful mediation with the City of Detroit during the City’s Chapter 9 bankruptcy.
  • Served as second chair in computer manufacturer class action involving privacy issues, stored communication laws and breach of contract.
  • Counseled toll road and tunnel operator on privacy issues, joint venture construction dispute, and escheat issues.
  • Counseled energy companies, insurance companies and manufacturers on data breach and post-breach issues.
  • Represented mental health authority in compliance investigation involving authority executive.
  • Represented heavy equipment manufacturer in mediation emanating from a supplier litigation.
  • Represents a financial institution in patent troll litigation.
  • Represents an international insurance guarantee company on issues involving its Detroit Property interests including counseling on municipal issues.
  • Represents a national supplier on bankruptcy creditor issues including negotiating critical vendor status and other executory contract matters.
  • Serves as a member of the Eastern District of Michigan, Southern Division, Bankruptcy Mediation Panel.
  • Represented an airport authority in a complex chapter 11 bankruptcy involving issues of first impression interpreting termination and unexpired lease rights.

Memberships & Involvement

  • American Bar Association
  • Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • National Bar Association
  • Wolverine Bar Association, President, 2008-2009
  • Women's Lawyers Association of Michigan, President, 2000-2001
  • State Bar of Michigan Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee, 2010-present.

Community/Civic Activities

  • Gift of Life-Michigan Governing Board, Board Member, 2011-present
  • Legal Aid and Defender Association, Inc., Board of Directors, Member, 2010
  • Advisory Board of Minority Organ Tissue Transplant Education Program (MOTTEP) of Detroit, Member
  • Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Detroit, Class XVIII, Member
  • Wayne State University, Board of Visitors, Member
  • University of Detroit Mercy Law School, Inns of American Court, Barrister
  • Black Family Development, Inc., Board Member
  • Just the Beginning Foundation, Mentor, Legal Profession Diversity Pipeline Program

Recipient of the D. Augustus Straker Bar Association Trailblazer Award for 2016

Named a Michigan Chronicle 2015 Women of Excellence Honoree

Named to Lawyers of Color's Inaugural Nation's Best List, 2019

Named to Savoy Magazine's Most Influential Black Lawyers list, 2015 & 2018

Recognized in Michigan Super Lawyers® for Business Litigation, Business/Corporate Law, and Bankruptcy, 2014-2018

Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® for Commercial Litigation, Mass Tort Litigation, and Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law, 2013-Present. Copyright 2015 by Woodward/White, Inc., Aiken, SC.

Named a Top Lawyer by dbusiness Magazine for Commercial Litigation, 2015

2012 Wolverine Bar Association President's Award  for promotion of diversity in the legal profession

2011 Robert Millender Visionary Award, Michigan State College of Law, Black Law Students' Association

2005 Honorary Alumni of the Year, Wayne State University School of Law

1995 Regional Winner, Top Oralist, National Association of Trial Lawyers, National Oral Advocacy Competition