Investigate South Carolina’s largest economic development deals of the past 20 years, and chances are Stephanie Yarbrough played a role in making them happen. One of the biggest assets she brings to clients is her familiarity with local and state decision-makers throughout the Southeast, and particularly in South Carolina, where Stephanie had previously served as the City of Charleston’s Director of Economic Development. In fact, when the New York Times profiled Charleston’s economic development boom in 2017, Stephanie was one of the local leaders the Times turned to for insight.

Stephanie works closely with domestic and international companies seeking to expand or relocate operations to the Carolinas and the Southeastern United States. Her philosophy is to invest in her clients from the outset in order to build long-term partnerships for the future. She has extensive experience advising companies across a wide range of industries, including life sciences, retail & consumer, manufacturing and software/technology.

Her efforts on behalf of clients have led to the creation of thousands of new jobs and billions of dollars in new investments. During the recent COVID-19 economic downturn, she worked to help clients stabilize their businesses, including guiding them through the federal PPP loan process. 

She works with new and expanding businesses in identifying and negotiating all aspects of a complete incentive package, advocating before the proper entities during all phases of the incentive approval process and drafting all related documentation for Fee-in-Lieu of Tax Agreements, state grants, job tax credits, job development credits, utility grants and many other economic development incentives and grants. She advises clients in general tax and corporate matters.

Additionally, Stephanie works side by side with leading consulting firms and large law firms as local counsel on economic development deals where her local knowledge and tenacity can be critical to getting deals done. 

As a recognized thought leader in the economic development space, she is frequently sought after to speak at local and national industry conferences and regularly publishes articles and insights for her clients and the community.

Publications and Presentations



Civic and Professional Activities

  • Board of Directors, Upstate Alliance
  • Capital Markets Conference Committee, Urban Land Institute - South Carolina
  • Board of Directors, South Carolina Economic Developer’s Association 
    • Chair, SCEDA Legislative Committee
    • Member, SCEDA Annual Conference Committee
  • Board of Directors, South Carolina Aquarium
    • Board of Directors, Charleston Regional Development Alliance
    • Member, Southern Economic Development Council
    • Former Board of Directors Member, South Carolina Biotechnology Innovation Organization  
      • Board Vice-Chair
      • Executive Committee
      • Annual Conference Chair
    • Former Board of Directors Member, South Carolina Venture Capital Authority 
    • Former Board of Directors Member, College of Charleston Alumnae Association
    • Former Board of Directors Member, MUSC Children’s Hospital
    • Former Board of Directors Member, Dee Norton Lowcountry Children's Center
    • Graduate, Riley Diversity Leadership Institute of Furman University
    • North Carolina Bar Association
    • South Carolina Bar Association
    • Spoleto Festival USA Auction Committee
    • Strategic Plan Alumni Focus Group Member, College of Charleston

    Honors and Awards

    • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America (BL Rankings), Economic Development Law, 2012 – Present
    • Recognized in Charleston Business Magazine and Greenville Business Magazine’s Legal Elite, Corporate Law, M&A and Government Relations, 2018 – Present 
    • Martindale-Hubbell Client Champion, 2019 – Present
    • Named to South Carolina Legal Elite, 2020 – Present
    • Women in the Law, Best Lawyers, 20201
    • John Rivers’ List of Charleston’s Notable Women, Post & Courier, 2020 
    • “40 Under 40” Award, Charleston Regional Business Journal, 2011


    Any result the lawyer or law firm may have achieved on behalf of clients in other matters does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.

    Sampling of recent transactions:

    • Represented manufacturer and corporate headquarters project in largest life sciences announcement in the Lowcountry of South Carolina’s history; 
    • Represented a manufacturer in establishing a 1.5 million square foot manufacturing facility, creating more than 200 new jobs;
    • Represented an Italian manufacturer in expanding its original investment and doubling size of its operations in South Carolina; and
    • Represented a company locating a large manufacturing facility in South Carolina, creating several thousand new jobs and bringing in hundreds of millions of dollars in capital investment.