Sarah A. Lewellen

Practice Description

Ms. Newkirk’s practice includes employment law litigation as well as employment law counseling and transactional work.  She regularly represents clients in lawsuits and administrative proceedings involving federal and state employment law statutes (such as Title VII, the ADEA, the ADA, Texas Labor Code, etc.) as well as litigation involving allegations of theft of trade secrets and violation of non-competition and non-solicitation agreements.  Ms. Newkirk also works with clients on complex employment law counseling issues such as managing discipline and terminations in high risk scenarios (which may involve employees who fall within multiple protected categories or are high-ranking executives), managing leaves of absences and navigating the issues raised by the FMLA, ADA and workers’ compensation statutes, and conducting sensitive or high level internal investigations.  She has significant experience in planning and executing reductions in force, which includes evaluating the risks raised by the proposed reductions and drafting employee communications and severance agreements.  Ms. Newkirk assists clients with drafting executive employment agreements as well as non-competition, non-solicitation and confidentiality agreements.  She regularly advises clients on appropriate classification of employees as exempt or non-exempt under FLSA and of workers as employees or independent contractors under state and federal statutes; she handles administrative proceedings and litigation on these subjects as well.  Ms. Newkirk also teams with transactional lawyers to perform due diligence and review and provide advice on the employment law aspects of merger and asset purchase agreements.

Selected Presentations and Publications

  • Presenter, “New Regulations, Recent Court Decision, and Vital Strategies for Managing Your Leave Law Challenges”
  • Presenter, “Trends in Employment: Pop Culture Crosses Into the Workplace”
  • Presenter, “Did You Know?  Recent  Trends in Employment Law”
  • Presenter, “Reduction in Force Issues”
  • Presenter, “Managing the Difficult Employee”
  • Author, Controversy Surrounds EEOC’s Pregnancy Discrimination Guidance

Professional / Civic Activities

  • Attorneys Serving the Community
  • Co-Chair, Networking Committee 2013 – Present
  • Texas Bar Foundation Fellow, 2011 – Present
  • Dallas Bar Association
  • Employment Law Section
  • Chair, Employment Law Section, 2004, Vice-chair, 2003
  • State Bar of Texas
  • Employment Law Section


  • Best Lawyers in America – Employment Law Management and Labor Law, 2013-2015
  • Best Lawyers in Dallas, D Magazine, 2012, 2015
  • Texas Super Lawyer by Law & Politics Magazine and Texas Monthly in 2005 – 2015
  • Texas Rising Star by Law & Politics Magazine and Texas Monthly in 2004 and 2005