Practice Areas

The information presented below is meant to help you identify which attorney in the Office of the General Counsel to contact based on the type of matter involved. Here you will find a list of our main legal practice areas, as well as the name of the attorney(s) in our office with the most experience in each of these areas. Please note that the list does not cover every legal practice area. If you have a question about a legal matter that is not identified among the topics below please do not hesitate to contact us at 617-353-2326 and we will direct you to an attorney who can assist with your matter.

Academic and Faculty Affairs
Contracts and General Business Matters
Communications and Media
Employment, Benefits, and Labor Relations
Gifts, Investments, Finance, and Tax
Governance and Trustee Matters
Health and Safety
Health Care and Clinical Activities
Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer
International Activities
Litigation and Disputes
Privacy, Information Technology and Security
Real Estate, Facilities, and Construction
Research and Scholarly Activities
Student Affairs


Academic and Faculty Affairs

OGC attorneys provide legal advice on academic and faculty affairs, including academic policies, distance education, digital learning, faculty visas and faculty appointment, promotion, tenure, and discipline

Attorneys specializing in Academic and Faculty Affairs:
Christine S. Collins
Lawrence S. Elswit
Erika Geetter
Sheila O’Leary
Lisa A. Tenerowicz
Dorothy D. Accomando (Paralegal)

Contracts and General Business Matters

OGC attorneys provide advice and counsel on a wide range of topics relating to the University’s agreements and legal relationships with vendors, service providers and partners, as well as advice on fundraising activities such as sweepstakes and raffles.

Attorneys specializing in Contracts and General Business Matters:
Christine S. Collins
Rebecca M. Ginzburg
Lilly Huang
Stephen Kerr
Jason A. Mahler
Sheila O’Leary
Martin A. Oppenheimer
Michaela (Kayla) B. Tabela
Crystal D. Talley
Lauren Bentlage (Law Fellow)
Dorothy D. Accomando (Paralegal)

Communications and Media
OGC attorneys work with WBUR, the College of Communication, and the University’s Marketing and Communications department concerning FCC and other licensing issues, defamation and other reporting concerns and agreements relating to intellectual property rights and media collaborations.

Attorneys specializing in Communications and Media:
Rebecca M. Ginzburg
Sheila O’Leary

Employment, Benefits, and Labor Relations
OGC attorneys work with Human Resources, the Provost’s Office and managers throughout the University to provide advice concerning the University’s relationship with its employees. Key areas include discrimination, disability accommodation, leaves of absence, employee conduct, hiring, layoffs, separations, wage and hour matters, retirement, employment visas and benefits.

Attorneys specializing in Employment, Benefits, and Labor Relations:
Christine S. Collins
Lawrence S. Elswit
Erika Geetter
Michaela (Kayla) B. Tabela
Lisa A. Tenerowicz

Gifts, Investments, Finance, and Tax
OGC attorneys work with various offices in the University regarding solicitation, receipt and administration of charitable gifts, associated tax issues and the management of the endowment and University investments.

Attorneys specializing in Gifts, Investments, Finance, and Tax:
Rebecca M. Ginzburg
Jason A. Mahler
Sheila O’Leary
Dorothy D. Accomando (Paralegal)

Governance and Trustee Matters
The General Counsel advises on the operation of the University in accordance with its governing documents and in compliance with ethical and regulatory requirements applicable to its activities. Key topics include the application of the University’s governing documents, maintaining the University’s tax exempt status, conflicts of interest and commitment, and the University’s Code of Ethical Conduct.

Attorneys specializing in Governance and Trustee Matters:
Erika Geetter

Health and Safety
Attorneys provide advice to the police and public safety departments regarding their activities on campus and to offices responsible for safe workplace and student environments. Issues include reporting of crimes under the Clery Act, emergency response, OSHA, and environmental regulation.

Attorneys specializing in Health and Safety:
Sheila O’Leary
Michaela (Kayla) B. Tabela
Crystal D. Talley
Dorothy D. Accomando (Paralegal)

Health Care and Clinical Activities
The attorneys in the health law practice area advise the University’s clinics and educational programs that incorporate clinical activities and research. Key topics include HIPAA and privacy, medical billing, licensure and accreditation, sponsored research, and clinical trials.

Attorneys specializing in Health Care and Clinical Activities:
Lilly Huang
Lauren Bentlage (Law Fellow)
Jennifer Pascarella (Paralegal)

Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer
OGC attorneys advise on matters related to the University’s intellectual property rights and assets, including copyrights, patents, and trademarks. Key topics include the licensing and acquisition of third-party content, infringement, fair use, digitization, publishing, commercialization of university-generated technology, and registration of trademarks.

Attorneys specializing in Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer:
Rebecca M. Ginzburg
Sheila O’Leary
Martin A. Oppenheimer
Crystal D. Talley
Dorothy D. Accomando (Paralegal)
Jennifer Pascarella (Paralegal)

International Activities
OGC attorneys provide legal advice and support for the broad range of BU’s international activities, including Study Abroad and other global activities. Key topics include the application of U.S. and foreign labor, tax, and entity laws. The attorneys and staff who advise in this area provide legal support for activities abroad as well as those on campus that involve foreign persons, companies, or governments.

Attorneys specializing in International Activities:
Rebecca M. Ginzburg
Stephen Kerr
Jason A. Mahler
Lisa A. Tenerowicz
Dorothy D. Accomando (Paralegal)

Litigation and Disputes
OGC attorneys are responsible for managing all litigation and other legal disputes to which the University is a party, including employment disputes, personal injury claims, contract and business disputes and intellectual property disputes. OGC attorneys also represent the University in connection with administrative proceedings before various government agencies, including the EEOC, the MCAD and the Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Education. In addition to representing the University in formal legal disputes, OGC attorneys work to prevent litigation and to resolve disputes before legal proceedings are commenced, both informally and in formal proceedings, such as mediation. OGC attorneys also respond to and facilitate the production of documents or witnesses in response to subpoenas, legal demands, third party requests and other legal processes.

Attorneys specializing in Litigation and Disputes:
Christine S. Collins
Lawrence S. Elswit
Stephen Kerr
Lisa A. Tenerowicz
Lauren Bentlage (Law Fellow)
Jennifer Pascarella (Paralegal)

Privacy, Information Technology and Security
OGC attorneys advise on a wide range of topics relating to data and privacy, as well as use of University technology resources. Additionally, OGC attorneys assist clients in understanding privacy and data security laws, including FERPA. OGC attorneys also advise University clients on legal and policy issues in connection with the use of networked computing resources and the generation, use, disclosure, and publication of information in digital formats.

Attorneys specializing in Privacy, Information Technology and Security:
Rebecca M. Ginzburg
Sheila O’Leary
Martin A. Oppenheimer

Real Estate, Facilities, and Construction
OGC attorneys and staff provide guidance concerning the acquisition or sale of property, the negotiation of leases, and the construction and design of property owned or leased by the University, including land use, zoning and other regulatory issues. OGC also provides advice concerning the use and occupancy of University facilities, licensing/permitting issues, utilities and energy issues, and maintenance of buildings and grounds.

Attorneys specializing in Real Estate, Facilities, and Construction:
Jason A. Mahler
Dorothy D. Accomando (Paralegal)

Research and Scholarly Activities
OGC attorneys provide legal advice and support for all aspects of academic research, including compliance issues, engagement with government, foundation or industry sponsors of research, and human subjects research issues. This includes negotiation of certain data use, collaboration, material transfer, and equipment or software donation agreements. OGC also provides advice concerning research policies on subjects such as open research / open access policies, academic freedom, authorship and publication issues.

Attorneys specializing in Research and Scholarly Activities:
Lilly Huang
Stephen Kerr
Martin A. Oppenheimer
Michaela (Kayla) B. Tabela
Crystal D. Talley

Student Affairs
Attorneys advise faculty and staff on a broad range of issues relating to student life, including disabilities and accommodations, student discipline, discrimination, Title IX compliance, admissions, athletics, financial aid, privacy, student health, safety, student visas, and student activities.

Attorneys specializing in Student Affairs:
Christine S. Collins
Lawrence S. Elswit
Erika Geetter
Rebecca M. Ginzburg
Stephen Kerr
Sheila O’Leary
Lisa A. Tenerowicz