Ed Adrian


Ed joined the firm in 2014. He brings with him twenty-five years of practicing law in Vermont, having worked for both private and public sector clients, in the areas of civil, administrative and criminal litigation. Ed helps licensed professionals navigate difficult legal and ethical issues providing assistance with licensing entities such as the Vermont Office of Professional Regulation, Medical Practice Board and Professional Responsibility Board. On a nearly daily basis Ed advises municipalities throughout Vermont. Ed represents parents and students, from kindergarten through graduate school, navigate the complexities of education and special education law.  His practice also includes helping businesses and individuals with the intricacies of employment and labor law. Ed provides counsel to Vermonters who find themselves having to make difficult decisions in difficult situations.

Ed comes to the firm having served as a State Prosecuting Attorney with the Vermont Secretary of State’s, Office of Professional Regulation for ten years, the last five as the Chief Prosecuting Attorney. In this capacity, Ed litigated over a thousand cases before various professional Boards including Nursing, Dentistry, Pharmacy and all of the mental health professions.

Previously Ed was an associate attorney at another Burlington law firm, representing municipalities and school districts throughout the State of Vermont. Ed also served as a Deputy State’s Attorney in Franklin County from 1998-2001, prosecuting a full range of criminal cases. His experience includes practice before the Vermont Environmental, Superior, Supreme, U.S. District Court and U.S. Supreme Court in a variety of areas, including employment, land use and zoning law and general civil litigation. Ed is experienced in school personnel issues, requests for public accommodation, and claims of harassment and discrimination. He has litigated these unique issues in the Vermont court system, and before special administrative bodies such as the Vermont Human Rights Commission.

Ed’s service to the legal profession runs deep: between 1999 and 2006, he held every possible leadership position in the Vermont Bar Association’s Young Lawyers; served on the Vermont Bar Association’s Board of Bar Managers; and was the District Representative for Maine and Vermont to the American Bar Association/Young Lawyers Division.

Ed brings with him substantial hands-on policy experience serving local and state government.  From 2007-2012 Ed was elected to serve on the Burlington City Council.  More recently Ed was the Chair of the Burlington Library Commission.  In 2018 Ed was appointed by Governor Phil Scott to serve on the Vermont Commission on Women and in 2019 he was appointed by the Governor to serve on the Vermont Legislative Apportionment Board.

Ed is a 1992 graduate of the University of Vermont with a B.A. in Political Science and Philosophy and a 1996 graduate of Vermont Law School where he received his J.D. and a Master of Studies in Environmental Law and Policy.

Ed lives in Burlington, Vermont with his wife Jen and his children Elsa and Henry. When he is not practicing law, Ed enjoys taking advantage of all Vermont has to offer with his family and friends. Ed also blogs on Vermont public policy and professional regulation at www.freedomandethics.net

  • Vermont Law School
    Juris Doctor, Masters of Studies in Environmental Law and Policy, 1996
  • University of Vermont
    Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Philosophy, 1992
Areas of Practice
Reported Cases

Court affirmed majority of findings, against nursing home administrator, decided after nine day hearing.

Case of first impression affirming decision of administrative law officer regarding unprofessional conduct of a licensed midwife and creating the standard for review.

Upheld decision of Environmental Court requiring property owner to obtain necessary permits for development despite claim of exemption.

Decision ultimately required Vermont Department of Education to promulgate standards to review home schooling applications.

Affirmed jury conviction for driving while license suspended based on driving under the influence.

Affirmed request to hold defendant without bail, based on a record of 17 DWIs and a charge of being a habitual offender.

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