Sara Gullickson McGrane
(612) 373-8511 | Minneapolis Law Office
Legal Administrative Assistant:
Kristi Henrichs | (612) 373-8522
Sara Gullickson McGrane is an “AV” rated attorney by Martindale-Hubbell (highest rating). She has been recognized as a leader in her field by Chambers in 2010 and 2011, and has been named a Super Lawyer every year since 2005. She is an experienced litigator who has handled hundreds of matters in both the federal and state courts of many states, including Minnesota and North Dakota. Before joining the Felhaber law firm, Ms. McGrane served as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of North Dakota. She focuses her practice on employment law and is certified as a specialist in Labor & Employment Law by the Minnesota State Bar Association.
Ms. McGrane has extensive experience handling complex litigation in both the employment and commercial arena. She has significant experience in all aspects of employment litigation, including cases involving breach of contract, discrimination (including age, disability, gender, marital status, national origin, race, religion, and sexual orientation), defamation, harassment, non-competes, and wage and hour. Ms. McGrane also has significant experience in handling class action and multi-party litigation, including FLSA collective and Rule 23 class actions. She has handled approximately twenty appeals to state and federal appellate courts. Ms. McGrane frequently lectures and trains on employment and litigation topics. She also investigates allegations of discrimination and harassment for employers. Ms. McGrane has tried numerous cases to jury verdict, and has tried one or more cases to verdict in each of the last eight years. Ms. McGrane also serves on the Board of Directors for Legal Aid Society of Minnesota as well as Felhaber Larson’s Board. She was named a member of the firm’s 5-person management committee in 2012, and serves the firm as its Secretary.
- Civil/Commercial Litigation
- General Corporate Litigation
- Class Action Law
- Complex Multi-Party Litigation
- Employment Law
- Breach of Contract
- Employment Discrimination Claims, Defamation, Harassment
- Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) Collective and Rule 23 Class Actions
- Non-Compete Claims
- Wage and Hour Disputes
- Higher Education Law
- Appellate Law
- Appeals to the State and Federal Appellate Courts
- John Trenter v. Fairview Health Services d/b/a/ Fairview Southdale Hospital, No. 27-CV-12-3837 (Hennepin County State Court, Jan. 16, 2013). Obtained complete dismissal of former employee’s age discrimination, disability discrimination, failure to accommodate and reprisal claims
- Brady West v. Allina Health, No. 11-CV-00287 (D. Minn. Aug. 30, 2012). Obtained complete dismissal of former employee’s state and federal claims.
- Nancy Olivieri v. Allina Health, No. 27-CV-12-2273 (Hennepin County State Court, September 18, 2012). Obtained complete dismissal of former employee’s discrimination claims.
- Georgia Youngquist v. Fairivew Health, No. 11-CV-00862 (D. Minn. June 26, 2012), obtained complete dismissal of former employee’s discrimination claims.
- Successfully tried to complete defense verdict a race discrimination and retaliation claim for Park Nicollet Health Services in January, 2012, in Hennepin County.
- Successfully obtained summary judgment in Minnesota State Court, Ramsey County, for the Church of St. Mark on negligent supervision and negligent retention claims on October 28, 2011.
- Represented US Bank in a disability discrimination and reprisal claim venued in the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota. Successfully obtained summary judgment on all counts in a decision issued August 10, 2011.
- Prevailed at an administrative proceeding of a private university's discharge of a tenured professor in July of 2011.
- Represented Fairview Health Services in a race discrimination, breach of contract, promissory estoppel and reprisal claim venued in the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota. Successfully obtained summary judgment on all claims in a decision issued on March 22, 2011.
- Represented Lawson Software in a wage and hour, FLSA class and collective action, initially venued in the Southern District of New York, successfully transferred to the District of Minnesota. Conditional certification was granted as an FLSA collective action, but successfully opposed Rule 23 certification. Successfully moved to have the case de-certified, and then successfully moved for summary judgment, arguing the plaintiffs were properly classified as exempt. Summary judgment granted, case dismissed in February of 2011.
- Represented Connexus Energy in a multiple count complaint involving breach of contract and common law claims for promissory estoppel, defamation from an exiting executive in state court, Anoka County. Successfully moved for summary judgment, all counts dismissed. The executive appealed, and the Court of Appeals affirmed dismissal of all counts in February of 2011.
- Represented SuperValu in a multiple count complaint involving claims of defamation, battery, invasion of privacy and the like in state court, Hennepin County. Successfully moved for summary judgment and all counts dismissed in November of 2010.
- Represented Red River Valley Cooperative in a trial for damages from a taking of property in a jury trial in October of 2010, Clay County, Minnesota. The jury awarded Red River Valley the full amount of damages they were seeking, resulting in a complete verdict for our client.
- Represented Park Nicollet Health Services in a pregnancy discrimination trial in Federal Court in Minnesota. The jury returned a defense verdict in January of 2009.
† Cases and descriptions are intended solely to illustrate the attorney’s professional experience, not to suggest that a particular result will be achieved in similar cases. The results of any particular case are governed by the specific facts and legal circumstances of that case.
- J.D., University of Minnesota, 1990
- B.A., Moorhead State University, summa cum laude, 1987
- Colorado, 1990
- United States District Court, Colorado, 1990
- United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit, 1991
- North Dakota, 1991
- United States District Court, North Dakota, 1991
- United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit, 1992
- Minnesota, 1992
- United States District Court, Minnesota, 1993
- United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, 1995
- United States Supreme Court, 1999
Professional Certifications, Awards and Designations
- Certified Labor and Employment Specialist in Minnesota by the MSBA
- Appointed as a Leader in her Field by the Chambers USA Guide
- Named a Top 40 Labor and Employment Lawyer in MN by Super Lawyer® for 2009
- Named a Top 100 Women Lawyer in MN by Super Lawyer® in 2007, 2008 and 2009.
- Named a Super Lawyer® of the legal profession for 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011, Minnesota Law & Politics (5% of Minnesota lawyers selected based on peer voting)
- Four times named a "Rising Star" of the legal profession, Minnesota Law & Politics
- Rated "AV" (highest rating) by Martindale Hubbell Legal Directory
Professional Activities and Memberships
- Hennepin County Bar Association, Member 1999-present
- Minnesota State Bar Association, Member 1999-present
- North Dakota State Bar Associations, Member 1991-present
- Warren E. Burger Inn of Court, 1997
- Quarterly Publication for Minnesota State Bar Association Employment Law Section on FLSA
- Presented at Minnesota Employment Law Institute on successful mediation strategies, May, 2012
- Presented at over 100 seminars on topics including Unlawful Harassment, Discrimination in the Workplace, A Practical Guide to Conducting Investigations, Privacy in the Workplace, Equitable Hiring Practices and Cultural Diversity
- American Conference Institute (ACI) Wage and Hour Seminar in San Francisco, CA, September of 2011
- Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, May 2010 and May 2011, Employment Law Litigators Update
- Googling My Facebook Makes Me Twitter: The Employment Law Implications of Social Networking, Fargo-Moorhead Human Resource Association (FMHRA), March 2, 2010
- Social Media – Update on Implications for Civil Litigators, Minnesota State Bar Association, Annual Civil Litigator’s Short Course, February 5, 2010
- Saving a Few Minutes Might Cost You a Lot of Money - Guarding Against Time Clock Violations that Will Cost You, Felhaber, Larson, Fenlon & Vogt, P.A., Fall Labor & Employment Law Seminar, November 6, 2009
- Updating your ADA Litigation Strategies in Light of the New Law, Minnesota State Bar Association, Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, May 28, 2009
- The Fair Labor Standards Act – What Do You Need to Know to Avoid Liability? Felhaber, Larson, Fenlon & Vogt, P.A., Fall Labor & Employment Law Seminar, October 10, 2008
Board of Directors
- Governing Council of the Minnesota State Board Association (MSBA)
Labor and Employment Section
- Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis, Board member, 2010 - present,
Chair of the Governance Committee, 2011
- Mid Minnesota Legal Assistance, Board member, 2011 - present