Practice Areas


Catholic University, J.D.

Catholic University, M.A., Urban and Regional Planning

Bar & Court Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland
Photo of Barbara A. Sears

Barbara A. Sears

ph: 301.961.5157
7200 Wisconsin Avenue
Suite 800
Bethesda, MD 20814
News & Publications

Barbara A. Sears has served as Managing Partner of the firm and practice leader of the Land Use Group. She represents land owners, developers and builders in land use, real estate, administrative and municipal law matters before administrative boards and agencies, legislative bodies and state and federal courts. Ms. Sears assists local, regional and national clients in complex matters involving zoning, master planning, subdivision, special exceptions, variances, building and other construction permits and approvals, and related facets of the development process. She also handles litigation arising from these areas, including administrative appeals.

Ms. Sears is a former Associate General Counsel of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission where she served as legal advisor to the Montgomery County Planning Board in all aspects of their work.


Significant Projects

Pike & Rose, Mixed-Use Transit-Oriented Redevelopment Project, White Flint

Crown Farm, Mixed-Use Development, City of Gaithersburg

Rockville Town Square, Mixed-Use Town Center in partnership with the City of Rockville 

County Service Park Redevelopment at Shady Grove Metro, Public/Private Partnership for Redevelopment at Shady Grove Metro in partnership with Montgomery County 

King Farm, Mixed-Use Development

Downtown Silver Spring Redevelopment Project, Mixed-Use Town Center Urban Renewal Project in partnership with Montgomery County

White Oak Science Center (VIVA White Oak) - Mixed use redevelopment project in partnership with Montgomery County 

Suburban Hospital Expansion

Glenstone Museum

Air Rights Office Buildings, Bethesda, Maryland

Rockville Metro Plaza

Johns Hopkins University Belward Research Campus

Johns Hopkins University Montgomery County Campus

National Cancer Institute Headquarters in the Life Sciences Center

Park Potomac, Mixed-Use Development

Grosvenor Heights in Bethesda

North Bethesda Gateway

Chevy Chase Lake

Honors & Distinctions

  • Selected by her peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America©  2008-2019
  • Selected by her peers for inclusion in Maryland and District of Columbia Super Lawyer 2009-2019
  • Named one of the Top 50 Women Attorneys in Washington, D.C. for 2012 and 2015 and in Maryland for 2011, 2012 and 2015 by Super Lawyers
  • Named one of the Best Attorneys in the Metropolitan Washington, D.C. Area by Washingtonian Magazine, December 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017, and 2018
  • Band 1 Rated for Real Estate; Land Use by Chambers USA for 2008-2019
  • Lawyer of the Year for Land Use and Zoning Law for Washington, D.C. by Best Lawyers
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Rated; highest possible rating for both legal ability and ethical standards
  • Profiled by the Gazette of Politics and Business as Woman Business Leader of Maryland

Professional Background

  • Linowes and Blocher LLP, Partner, 1981 - Present