Investigate the Southeastern United States’ 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 ability to navigate relationships with local and state governmental leadership and decision makers, throughout the United States. In fact, when the New York Times wrote an article about economic development, Stephanie was one of the leaders the Times turned to for insight.  

Stephanie works closely with domestic and international companies seeking to expand or relocate in the 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 corporate headquarters, manufacturing, datacenters, distribution and large office deals. She has extensive experience in the automotive sector, the life sciences sector and aviation.

She works with new and expanding businesses in identifying and negotiating all aspects of a discretionary incentive package, advocating before the proper governmental entities during all phases of the incentive approval process. She negotiates and structures large incentive packages on behalf of global companies on a daily basis.

Stephanie’s team prepares all contracts related to property tax abatement agreements, state grants, job tax credits, job development credits, utility grants and many other economic development incentives including port related incentives, road and related infrastructure incentives and rail incentives. Stephanie and her team advise clients in general tax and corporate matters.  Her efforts on behalf of clients have led to the creation of hundreds of thousands of new jobs and billions of dollars in capital investment.

Additionally, Stephanie is brought in regularly by leading site selection consulting firms and other global law firms as local counsel on economic development deals where her knowledge and tenacity can be critical to getting deals done.  Her team regularly counsels companies on all aspects of the deal – incentives, tax, real estate, corporate, construction, IP/patent, litigation, employment, immigration, environmental, land use/planning/zoning.  Her team-based approach is key to an efficient, well managed and well-run deal process. Her legal work often involves foreign based companies and is evenly split between landlord/developer representation and tenant/end user representation.  Her background and deep experience in public company mergers and acquisitions makes her well suited to run some of the largest deals in our country. 

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

Representative Experience

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.

Counsel of Largest Life Sciences Projects in South Carolina

  • Represented manufacturer and corporate headquarters project in largest life sciences announcement in the Lowcountry of South Carolina’s history.

Counsel on Large Battery/Electric Car Manufacturing Plant Project

  • Represent automobile manufacturer in a very large battery/electric car manufacturing plant project. Managed legal counsel on every aspect of this deal including incentives, real estate, land-use/zoning/planning and construction work resulting in billions in capital investment.

Counsel for Establishment of Large Manufacturing Facility and Job Creator

  • Represented a manufacturer in establishing a 1.5 million square foot manufacturing facility.

Counsel for Growth on Existing Investment

  • Represented an Italian manufacturer in expanding its original investment and doubling the size of its operations.

Counsel for Establishing a Large Manufacturing Facility

  • Represented a company locating a large manufacturing facility, creating several thousand new jobs and bringing in hundreds of millions of dollars in capital investment.

Professional & Civic Engagement

  • Board of Directors, South Carolina Chamber of Commerce
  • Board of Directors, SCBIO
  • Board of Directors, MUSC Children's Hospital
  • Board of Directors, Upstate Alliance
  • Capital Markets Conference Committee, Urban Land Institute
  • Board of Directors, South Carolina Economic Developer’s Association 
    • Chair, SCEDA Legislative Committee
    • Member, SCEDA Annual Conference Committee
  • Board of Directors, South Carolina Aquarium
  • Former Board of Directors Member, South Carolina Biotechnology Innovation Organization  
    • Board Vice-Chair
    • Executive Committee
    • Legislative Chair
    • Annual Conference Chair
  • Board of Directors, Charleston Regional Development Alliance
  • Member, Southern Economic Development Council
  • 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

Thought Leadership



Honors & Awards

  • Chambers USA Ranked Lawyer, Corporate/M&A, South Carolina, 2023-Present
  • Recognized in Charleston Business Magazine's 50 Most Influential People, (2023)
  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America (BL Rankings)
    • Economic Development Law, 2012 – Present
  • Named to Charleston Business Magazine’s Legal Elite in Government Law (2018-2023), Corporate Law: Mergers & Acquisitions (2022), and Economic Development (2022-2023)
  • Martindale-Hubbell Client Champion, 2019 – Present
  • Named to South Carolina Legal Elite, 2020 – Present. Awarded the top practitioner in South Carolina in the areas of: economic development, corporate, mergers & acquisitions (2022). Awarded the top practitioner in South Carolina in the areas of: government/finance and economic development (2023).
  • Women in the Law, 50 Best Women Lawyers in America, 2021 - Present
  • H. Grady Barnhill, Jr. Award for Service to Clients, Womble Bond Dickinson (2022)
  • John Rivers’ List of Charleston’s Notable Women, Post and Courier, 2020 
  • “40 Under 40” Award, Charleston Regional Business Journal, 2011