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Sheryl R. Israel

Washington, D.C.

Sheryl R. Israel

Sheryl Israel helps global clients in the aviation sector understand and comply with the web of complicated United States government regulatory requirements. She provides a unique and highly informed perspective as a former in-house lawyer at both the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Sheryl navigates issues for clients related to DOT and FAA requirements, as well as Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS), State Department, and Transportation Security Administration (TSA). She helps more than two dozen foreign business jet operators obtain government authorizations required for their U.S. operations. Sheryl works on DOT licensing, certification, and fitness issues for foreign and domestic airlines, including for on-demand private charter operators, scheduled and charter passenger airlines, and all-cargo carriers.

She regularly counsels and defends U.S. and foreign airlines, aviation repair stations, and other entities in enforcement cases involving aircraft operational and maintenance issues, drug and alcohol testing requirements, hazardous materials transportation, aviation security, CBP penalties, DOT consumer compliance, and aviation disability issues. Sheryl has obtained Special Permits and Competent Authority Approvals issued by the DOT Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) authorizing the carriage of forbidden dangerous goods by air.

Sheryl began her legal career as a DOT Honors Attorney, and then worked in the FAA chief counsel's office, focusing on enforcement and aviation security matters. During her tenure at FAA, she received the Chief Counsel's "Attorney of the Year Award," as well as a superior achievement award for her work involving aviation security violations relating to Pan Am Flight 103, which exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988.


Areas of focus

Education and admissions


  • J.D., Boston University School of Law, 1986
  • B.A., Tulane University, 1983


  • Member, Aero Club
  • Member, American Bar Association
  • Member, Federal Bar Association
  • Member, International Aviation Club

Bar admissions and qualifications

  • District of Columbia
  • New York
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