Karen O'Brien is a seasoned government contracts attorney and recognized expert on procurement law and acquisition authority. She provides expert assistance to government agencies in a wide range of acquisition services to include developing acquisition plans, analyzing acquisition operations, developing performance-based statements of work, evaluation criteria and source selection plans that meet agencies' goals and objectives. She also teaches Jefferson Solutions' highly successful performance-based acquisition course.
Ms. O'Brien assists commercial clients in the acquisition process to understand federal regulations and implications for business operations. She also assists them with responses to government solicitations. For performance-based acquisitions, she assists clients with the development of sound metrics, acceptable quality levels, and methods to monitor and track performance, and provides performance-based acquisition training.
Ms. O'Brien is an author on key texts in the field of government contracting, including The Government Contracts Reference Book and Competitive Negotiation: The Source Selection Process (published by CCH Publishing).
Prior to joining Jefferson in 2005, Ms. O'Brien was with the firm of McCarthy, Sweeney and Harkaway, P.C. where she practiced in the area of government contract law, including contract administration matters, claims, disputes and bid protests. Prior to that, Ms. O'Brien managed the Government Contracts publications program of the George Washington University Law School.
Ms. O'Brien began her career as a procurement law attorney in the Army Judge Advocate General's Corps. While in the Army, Ms. O'Brien served as the legal advisor to the Principal Assistant Responsible for Contracting and the Head of Contracting Activity in Southwest Asia. She also served as a staff attorney for the DoD Advisory Panel on Streamlining and Codifying the Acquisition Process (Section 800 Panel). The Panel recommendations served as the basis for the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1994 and the Clinger-Cohen Act of 1996.
Ms. O'Brien received a Juris Doctor from the Vermont Law School and a bachelor's degree in accounting from Niagara University.