James Hannaway is an Associate at Sanford Heisler Sharp.
At Sanford Heisler Sharp, James’s practice has focused on employment discrimination, qui tam, and public interest litigation, representing governments, individuals, and classes. Working with a team of Sanford Heisler Sharp attorneys, James has represented clients including:
- The Mayor and City Council of Baltimore in claims against Polymer80 for manufacturing, selling, and advertising easy-to-assemble, un-traceable ghost gun kits and parts
- A tech company executive who faced retaliation for opposing pay discrimination based on his race
- A female Partner at a law firm who was paid less than her male peers based on her gender
- A class of over 10,000 current and former African American Deputy U.S. Marshals and Detention Enforcement Officers who have experienced racism in hiring, promotions, and headquarters assignments from 1994 to the present
- A tech company employee who faced retaliation for opposing discrimination and pay discrimination based on her race and gender
- A whistleblower alleging that Invitation Homes, one of the largest corporate landlords in the country, defrauded hundreds of California cities by failing to secure necessary permits for renovation work
- Local governments in their claims against opioid manufacturers, distributors, and pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) for their role in creating the public health emergency caused by prescription opioids
- A class of former employees of West Monroe who were short-changed when West Monroe cashed out their holdings in the company’s employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) as part of West Monroe’s acquisition by a private equity firm
- A female in-house counsel at a large corporation who was paid less than her peers based on her gender and age
- Three former African American employees in their claims of race harassment against the Kraft Heinz Company
- Whistleblowers in sealed and unsealed qui tam suits under investigation by the U.S. government and other governmental stakeholders
James received his law degree with highest honors, Order of the Coif, from the George Washington University Law School and his Bachelor of Arts cum laude from Carleton College. While at the George Washington University Law School, James served as an Articles Editor of The George Washington Law Review, Chapter President of the American Constitution Society, Student Attorney for the Public Justice Advocacy Clinic, and Organizing Committee Member of GW’s graduate worker union. He also worked as a research assistant for Associate Dean Alan B. Morrison and as a law clerk at another national public interest law firm.
A member of the District of Columbia bar, James is also a volunteer attorney for the Washington Lawyers’ Committee Workers’ Rights Clinic.
Before joining Sanford Heisler Sharp, James completed a clerkship for the Honorable Deborah A. Robinson, Magistrate Judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Prior to law school, James worked on, and eventually managed, several electoral campaigns and worked as a crisis communications consultant.
When James is not lawyering, he enjoys running, the Baltimore Orioles, and walking his chihuahua mix rescue, Millie, around Washington, DC’s Petworth neighborhood.
- J.D., The George Washington University Law School, with Highest Honors, Order of the Coif
- B.A., Carleton College, cum laude
- Public Justice Advocacy Clinic
- Honorable Deborah A. Robinson, Magistrate Judge in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia
- District of Columbia, 2020
Exceptional advocates throughout my case.
Sanford Heisler Sharp brings a ferocity and dedication to their work that cannot be understated. David Sanford, Saba Bireda, James Hannaway, Madison Zucco, and Niamh Lang were exceptional advocates throughout my case, who fought to ensure that I would receive the best result possible while showing empathy during a very trying time. If you are looking for a set of attorneys who will work tirelessly to achieve justice, I would recommend this firm to the highest degree.
– Professional Sports Head Coach and Former Client
You continued to fight for me and I respect you unconditionally.
“Christine Dunn–you continued to fight for me and I respect you unconditionally and can’t thank you enough. I could write an essay about how smart, powerful, intelligent of an attorney you are, but I would not be able to finish without missing something. James Hannaway–I thank you for coming on to the case at the right time. You were so comforting during a challenging mediation and worked effortlessly on closing out this case from early morning to late night emails. Again, I thank all of you from the bottom of my heart!”
– A Former Sexual Assault Victim
Determined resolve & expert advice.
“Saba Bireda and team [James Hannaway and Niamh Lang] helped us navigate a challenging time, both professionally and personally, with determined resolve, expert advice and consistent kindness–we were grateful to have them on our side.”
– David W., Investor & Advisor
Passionate and informative approach
I am appreciative of the level of professionalism and care that I received while working with Kate, James, and Grace. I felt that the team’s passionate and informative approach was what led to our success in going against a tech giant. I can not recommend Sanford Heisler enough and will be forever grateful for their dedication to my case.
– Former Client, COO
Attorneys at Sanford Heisler Sharp, filed a $30 million civil action in the Eastern District of California against Kraft Heinz Foods Company on behalf of former employees Alex Horn, Lance Aytman, and Keith Hooker.
The Complaint, filed by the Mayor and City Council of Baltimore, alleges that Polymer80 violates Maryland and federal firearms law by manufacturing, selling, and advertising easy-to-assemble, un-traceable gun kits and parts that have created a public nuisance in the City of Baltimore, where 91% of ghost guns seized by police are sold by Polymer80.
In a class action race discrimination case, Sanford Heisler Sharp is counsel for the class, which includes over 700 current and former African American Deputy U.S. Marshals and Detention Enforcement Officers who have experienced racism in hiring, promotions, and headquarters assignments from 1994 to the present. The class also includes all African American candidates who applied for Deputy U.S. Marshal positions since 1994 but were never hired.
- How a California hedge fund bulldozed the state’s labor laws to impose some of the harshest non-competes on Wall Street, Business Insider, October 3, 2023
- US Marshals Ink $15M Deal In Decades-Long Race Bias Fight, Law360, September 26, 2023
- Fight Over Invitation Homes’ City Permitting Is Powered By AI, Law360, May 12, 2023
- Mayor Brandon M. Scott takes fight against ‘ghost guns’ directly to build-kit manufacturer, Polymer80, AFR, August 20, 2022
- At Invitation Homes, unpermitted work leaves leaky plumbing, faulty repairs, renters say, The Washington Post, July 12, 2022
- 6 Books Wage And Hour Attorneys Should Read This Summer, Law360 Employment Authority, June 3, 2021
- How AI ‘Cultural Fit’ Assessments Can Be Analyzed For Bias, Law360, November 17, 2023. Co-Author.
- Courts Should Revisit Availability Of Age Bias Law Damages, Law360, September 27, 2023. Co-Author.
- Employer Lessons In Avoiding Intersectional Bias Claims, Law360 Employment Authority, September 8, 2021. Co-Author.
- Codifying the Agency Class Action, 87 GEO. WASH. L. REV. 1451 (2020)
- Standing on Shaky Ground: How Circuit Courts Reconcile Legal Rights and Injuries in Fact After Spokeo v. Robins, 87 GEO. WASH. L. REV. 706 (2019)
- A Review of The Cost-Benefit Revolution by Cass R. Sunstein; Carceral Capitalism by Jackie Wang, 87 GEO. WASH. L. REV. ARGUENDO 26 (2019)
- Which Employer Actions Qualify as “Adverse Employment Actions” for a Retaliation Claim?
- New York City Fast Food Workers Just Declared Independence from At-Will Employment
- New DC Attorney General Proposal Would Provide More Tools to Fight “Algorithmic Discrimination”
- Does Title VII Provide Any Protections If Your Employer Fires You for Advocating for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion?