Sharon A. O'Shaughnessy attorney profile image

Sharon A. O'Shaughnessy
C: (917) 538-9223
1185 Avenue of the Americas
21st Floor
New York, NY 10036
T: (212) 880-3990
F: (212) 880-3998
Practice Areas
  • J.D., Seton Hall University School of Law, 2012
  • M.A., New York University, 2004
  • B.S., magna cum laude, New York University, 2003
  • New York
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York


Ms. O’Shaughnessy is a Partner in the firm’s New York office and serves as McGonigle’s Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer and Pro Bono Manager. Her practice focuses on defending and advising financial services firms and their employees in regulatory and government investigations and enforcement proceedings by the SEC, FINRA, and various state regulators, compliance with regulatory requirements, and cybersecurity and data privacy issues. She also performs due diligence of exchange-traded funds and cryptocurrency exchange assets.

Enforcement and Regulatory Matters. Ms. O’Shaughnessy represents financial services firms and their employees in regulatory and government investigations and enforcement proceedings by the SEC, FINRA, and various state regulators. She successfully convinces regulators not to pursue disciplinary action and regularly negotiates favorable settlement terms for regulatory matters involving myriad subject matter including, but not limited to, fraud, manipulative and insider trading, whistleblower allegations, order handling, inadequate supervision, and inadequate policies and procedures.

Cybersecurity and Data Privacy. Ms. O’Shaughnessy advises clients regarding data breaches and represents companies victimized by cyberattacks. She regularly lectures on cybersecurity and data privacy trends and compliance, data breaches, incident response, and third-party cyber risk management.

Due Diligence. Ms. O’Shaughnessy performs limited due diligence on behalf of Authorized Participants for lead market-maker activity and providing seed money for the launch of new exchange-traded funds. The process involves review of offering documents, conducting due diligence, and independent research of the various entities and parties involved. She also conducts due diligence of cryptocurrency exchange assets.

Litigation. Ms. O’Shaughnessy has represented companies and individuals accused of business crimes, public corruption, securities law violations, and fraudulent practices by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, State Attorneys General, District Attorneys’ Offices, and the SEC. From 2017–2022, Ms. O’Shaughnessy has been recognized as a New York "Rising Star" in the area of Criminal Defense: White Collar by Super Lawyers. She has also represented financial services firms and their employees in federal and state court matters, as well as FINRA arbitrations, relating to commercial and employment issues. Prior to attending law school, Ms. O’Shaughnessy worked as a Senior Case Manager at JAMS, which provided her with an extensive background in Alternative Dispute Resolution.

Ms. O’Shaughnessy is actively committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion and pro bono service.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Since 2021, Ms. O’Shaughnessy has served as McGonigle’s Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer. She oversees and implements the firm’s myriad efforts to elevate DEI as a priority, both internally and in the legal community at large, which include:

  • Participating in the Mansfield Rule for Midsize Law Firms (2020–2022; 2022–2023), Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (“LCLD”), and Law Firm Antiracism Alliance;
  • Sponsoring and speaking at industry-leading conferences that are devoted to the advancement of women in the financial services community;
  • Leading CLE conversations with industry members about obstacles and opportunities for diverse attorneys, best practices for fostering diverse, equitable, and inclusive cultures in the legal sphere, and expanding the legal pipeline; and
  • Advancing the firm’s internal DEI efforts through its Credentialing Program, Mentorship Program, Business Development Program, Women Attorneys Program, and monthly DEI newsletter.

Ms. O’Shaughnessy participated in the 2021 LCLD Fellows Program, which recognizes diverse attorneys who have distinguished themselves as leaders at their organizations and in the legal industry. LCLD is comprised of over 400 corporate chief legal officers and law firm managing partners who serve as mentors and leaders dedicated to fostering diversity.

Pro Bono Service. In her role as Pro Bono Manager, Ms. O’Shaughnessy spearheads the firm’s pro bono efforts. Since 2014, Ms. O’Shaughnessy has served as a Volunteer Attorney for the New York City Bar Association's Legal Clinic for the Homeless, providing advice, advocacy, and representation to residents of homeless shelters on a variety of matters related to state and federal public benefits, shelter placements, and domestic violence issues. In 2017, Ms. O’Shaughnessy was recognized for her distinguished pro bono service to the New York State Courts Access to Justice Program, through which she dispensed legal advice to unrepresented litigants appearing in the New York State Courts.

Recognitions, Honors, & Awards

  • Sharon O’Shaughnessy Recognized as “Rising Star” – 2017–2022 Super Lawyers of New York (Criminal Defense: White Collar)