Sarah A. Murray

Sarah A. Murray



Experienced liaison between Indian tribes and businesses. Problem-solver for complex legislative, regulatory and legal issues. Former attorney for the Department of the Interior and the Department of Justice.

Sarah Murray provides counsel on laws, regulations and legislation related to administrative law, regulatory compliance, land use, Indian affairs and tribal gaming. Her experience serving as an attorney at multiple federal agencies and rich knowledge of the historical, legal and constitutional underpinnings of the relationship between Indian tribes and the U.S. government makes her an asset to both tribal nations and the companies that do business with them. Sarah advocates for tribal nations and represents their interests in high-level interactions with the U.S. government, whether she is navigating regulation of tribal water systems or channeling federal investment into Indian country. She conducts pre-investment due diligence for renewable energy, natural resource and corporate gaming companies and navigates complex issues related to sovereign immunity and tribal law.

Sarah spent four years at the Department of the Interior, most recently serving as an attorney in the Division of Indian Affairs within Interior’s Solicitor’s Office. She previously served as both chief of staff and senior counselor to the assistant secretary of Indian Affairs. Prior, Sarah served at the National Indian Gaming Commission as a staff attorney and counselor to the chair. Sarah began her public sector career as a trial attorney for the Department of Justice Commercial Litigation Branch.

Representative Matters

Recent Experience

  • Brownstein lead the efforts of a tribal community in standing up their commercial gaming enterprise (independent of on-reservation IGRA gaming) and provides counsel on an ongoing basis regarding potential commercial opportunities and their regulatory implications in gaming jurisdictions around the U.S. Our efforts for the tribal community include development of bespoke entity and governance structures, guiding and streamlining licensing and regulatory efforts, and consulting on governmental and political considerations. We also assist in identifying and conducting due diligence relating to potential partnership opportunities, and acting as transactional and regulatory counsel in the acquisition of commercial gaming assets and entry into partnership structures with other operators.

  • Negotiated complex Indian gaming agreements and management contracts, including the first-ever agreement for retail and mobile sports betting by an Indian tribe in the United States, a framework now widely adopted industry-wide to enable both outside partnerships with tribes and significant market opportunities for tribal entities.

  • NEPA and Federal regulations guidance for tribes wishing to place land into trust to increase self-determination and economic opportunities including entering into business partnerships for the use and management of natural resources and energy on tribal lands.

  • As part of a team of lawyers and advocates, helped develop and propose the Coronavirus Relief Fund for tribes, which ultimately led to $8 billion in funding to tribal nations in the CARES Act.

Insights & Publications



  • J.D., 2007, University of Pennsylvania Law School
  • B.A., 2004, University of Maryland


  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland

Community Involvement


  • Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe Member
  • The Tacy Foundation, Board of Directors
  • Native American Bar Association, Mentor



Best Lawyers in America, 2024

Profiles in Diversity Journal, Native American Indigenous Leadership Award, 2022

Law360, Native American Editorial Advisory Board, 2021, 2023, 2024