Statement of Qualifications

McMillan Park in Washington DC

Established in 1992, the Law Offices of Andrea Ferster is a public interest law office that focuses on land use, historic preservation, transportation advocacy, and nonprofit tax and corporate matters.

Andrea Ferster is a recognized expert on federal and local historic preservation law, nonprofit tax, and trails and transportation policy.
Andrea has helped dozens of organizations obtain federal tax exemption from the Internal Revenue Service.

She represents organizations and governmental agencies nationwide in litigation over enforcement of historic preservation laws and on transportation matters. Andrea's long-term clients include the National Trust for Historic Preservation, International PNH Interest Group, and the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, where she also serves as general counsel.

The National Park Seminary Historic District, Forest Glen, MD - Photo credit: Save Our Seminary at Forest Glen

Andrea is a member of the District of Columbia Bar, the New York Bar, and the bars of the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the First, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, and Federal Circuits, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

The office's range of services include:

  • Environmental litigation and advocacy - litigation and advocacy before courts and federal agencies on highway and transit projects.
  • Historic preservation - litigation and advocacy before courts and federal agencies to enforce the National Historic Preservation Act.
  • Land use - advocacy before District of Columbia land use planning agencies and courts on zoning, historic preservation, easements, building code compliance, and environmental impact issues.
  • Tax exempt organizations - assist nonprofits, including "Main Street" organizations, successfully apply for federal tax exemption; provide general counsel advice on a wide range of nonprofit tax, corporate, fundraising, and personnel matters.
  • Trail Planning - advise on legal issues affecting trails and greenways, including liability issues, and Surface Transportation Board proceedings relating to rail-trail conversions.
  • Constitutional "takings" jurisprudence - assist governments defend against Fifth Amendment "takings" challenges to environmental and land use regulation.


  • Ferster & Merritt, Fighting Freeways and Saving Historic Roads, Forum Journal, Summer, 2000, Vol. 14, No. 4.
  • Ferster & Brabec, Planning for Trails and Greenways after Dolan v. City of Tigard, ProBike News (Aug. 1994).
  • Ferster, Securing Tax Exemption for 'Main Street' Organizations: Choosing the Right Classification, Preservation Law Reporter, Vol. 13, No. 3 (March, 1994).
  • Ferster, Congress Acts to Curb Excess Benefits by Nonprofit Insiders, Preservation Law Reporter, Vol. 15, No. 9 (September, 1996).
  • Ferster, Andrea, Recent Developments in the Law Interpreting the National Historic Preservation Act, in SE 31, ALI-ABA 227 (1999)
  • Ferster & Merritt, Fighting Freeways and Saving Historic Roads, Forum Journal, Vol. 14, No. 4, Summer 2000.
  • Ferster, Andrea, Commentary - Rails-to-Trails Conversions: A Review of Legal Issues, Planning and Environmental Law, Vol. 58, No. 9 (American Planning Association, 2006)
  • Ferster, Andrea, Anticipatory Demolition: Tool for Protection or Paper Tiger? Forum Journal, Vol. 26, No. 2, Winter 2012.

Community Service

  • D.C. Bar, President (2013-14 term) D.C. Bar Treasurer (2010-11 term)
  • D.C. Bar, Board of Governors (2011-2014 term)
  • D.C. Bar Practice Management Service Committee (2007 to present)
  • Common Cause, National Governing Board Member, 1990-1996;
  • Common Cause/D.C., Legal Counsel, 1984 to 1991;
  • Common Cause/D.C., Chair, 1987 to 1989.
  • Trustee, Committee of 100 on the Federal City, 1996-2000; 2004-2010
  • Founding board member, DC Refers

Awards and Honors

2009 District of Columbia Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation, Historic Preservation Review Board Chairman's Award for Excellence in Law and Public Policy

2018 Fastcase 50 award honoree for innovation in the law

Washington, DC SuperLawyers® 2014 to 2023


Phone: (202) 974-5142

Email: andreaferster@gmail.com

© 2023 AndreaFersterLaw.com