Irish Legal 100


BRENDAN Patrick Kelleher is a partner in the Buffalo, New York office of Harris Beach, LLC. He represents public and private sector employers in federal and New York state courts, and before the New York State Division of Human Rights, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the U.S. Department of Labor, the New York State Department of Labor and other administrative agencies.

Kelleher regularly counsels employers on their rights and obligations under various federal and state labor and employment laws in an effort to avoid litigation whenever possible. For matters requiring litigation, he has successfully resolved employers’ labor-related problems.

Kelleher also advises employers regarding employee disciplinary issues, terminations, employee investigations, and drafts employment and separation agreements. He frequently lectures on New York and federal labor and education laws, and has authored numerous articles on these topics.

Another substantial aspect of Kelleher’s practice involves counseling school districts. From September 2010 to November 2011 he served as general counsel to the City of Buffalo School District, where he advised the Board of Education, the superintendent and senior administrators regarding the legal needs of a district consisting of 34,000 students and 6,500 employees.

Kelleher has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America since 2016, and Super Lawyers since 2013.

Kelleher earned a BA from American University, and a JD from SUNY at Buffalo Law School.

Prior to practicing law, Kelleher served on the Washington, D.C. staff of Senator Edward M. Kennedy.

“The senator was very involved in Irish issues. Because other employees departed the senator’s foreign policy office shortly after my arrival, I was able to do a good volume of substantive work on Irish issues there, including drafting speeches, correspondence and other public statements for Senator Kennedy regarding Ireland,” Kelleher says.

Married with twin sons, Kelleher’s paternal grandparents immigrated to Buffalo from counties Cork and Kerry. His maternal grandparents were also from Ireland.

“My paternal grandfather Bart Kelleher did not go to college, but he worked incredibly hard as a hardware salesman, showing me the value of human relationships and that one’s word and handshake are his bonds. He was very proud of his heritage,” Kelleher notes.





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