Sharita has had a passion for real estate from a very young age. Growing up, she witnessed that ownership of land, a home, or business was unattainable for many, including her own family. Learning about real estate was the foundation upon which Sharita wanted to build her career. Having a career that is dedicated to real estate is a dream fulfilled on a daily basis.
Sharita is a member of the firm's Real Estate Development Group and focuses her practice in the areas of Commercial Real Estate and Real Estate Development. Sharita regularly assist clients with many aspects of commercial real estate, including, among other things: acquisitions, dispositions, and leasing; title analysis and title disputes; public utility real estate issues; right-of-way acquisitions; condemnation/eminent domain actions; and easement negotiation and drafting.
Sharita is committed to diversity and inclusion within the legal field and beyond and devotes a considerable amount of time to this commitment. She serves as co-chair of the firm’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee and is an active member of Triangle Commercial Real Estate Women (TCREW) and the North Carolina Bar Association’s Minorities in the Profession Committee.
Areas of Focus
- Triangle Business Journal, Women in Business Award, 2023
- Best Lawyers®
- Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law (2024)
- Real Estate Law (2024)
- North Carolina Super Lawyers, Rising Star (2021-2022)
- The National Black Lawyers Top 100 (2020)
- "Future Leader - Minority Lawyers (Private Practice)," inaugural Chambers Diversity Award, 2016
- "Tar Heel of the Week", The News & Observer, January 3, 2016
- "Leaders in Diversity" Award, Triangle Business Journal, 2015
- Awarded the honor of serving as a law student member of the 2008 Thurgood Marshall College Fund Leadership Institute in New York
- North Carolina Central University, J.D., magna cum laude, 2010
- Member, Phi Alpha Delta Legal Fraternity
- Senior Editor for the NCCU School of Law Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Law Review
- North Carolina State University, B.A., Public and Interpersonal Communication, summa cum laude, 2007
Bar & Court Admissions
- North Carolina
- North Carolina Bar Association
- Former Chair, Minorities in the Profession Committee
- Former Co-Chair, Minorities in the Profession Committee's ¡Adelante! Moving Forward Program
- Member, Real Property Section
- Legal Aid of North Carolina Volunteer Lawyer Program
- Certified Adult Mental Health First Aid, National Council for Mental Wellbeing
- Wake County Bar Association
- Wake County Real Property Lawyers Association
- Triangle Commercial Real Estate Women (TCREW)
- International Right-of-Way Association (IRWA)
- Extensive experience with (i) complex real estate acquisition and disposition related tasks, (ii) commercial real estate due diligence, (iii) right of way/easement acquisition, (iv) survey analysis, (v) title examination and resolution of title/boundary disputes, and (vi) drafting of real estate related documents (including without limitation, purchase and sale agreements, deeds, leases, easements, and declarations/restrictions/covenants for commercial property).
- Extensive experience in the acquisition, development, and/or leasing of a variety of property types, including office buildings, retail and mixed-use developments, distribution centers, data centers, utility facilities, hotels, medical and hospital facilities.
- Led the fee acquisition of raw land in southeastern U.S. totaling over $60 million in 2021.
- Represent large utility provider with acquisition in fee of land in North Carolina for energy projects.
- Represent large utility providers in the southeastern U.S. on real estate acquisition, disposition, leasing, easement/right-of-way acquisition, and condemnation/eminent domain matters.
- Represent quasi-governmental entity on leasing and other real estate related matters.
- Certified to review and sign North Carolina real estate title opinions for numerous title insurance companies.
- Smith Anderson Achieves All Time Highs for Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers® in Three CategoriesBest Lawyers®News
- Triangle Business JournalRecognition
- Black In-House Counsel 2022 Annual Report
- North Carolina Super Lawyers® Selects Largest Class of “Rising Stars” in Firm’s Recent History – 32 Lawyers Recognized in All!Super Lawyers
- Kerry Shad and Sharita Whitaker Talk Diversity & Inclusion with Lawyers Weekly at Its D&I Awards CeremonyNorth Carolina Lawyers Weekly
- Above the Law Showcases Smith Anderson Attorneys on Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives for Law FirmsAbove the Law, "The Jabot" Podcast
- North Carolina Super Lawyers® Selects 23 Smith Anderson Lawyers as 2021 Super Lawyers and Nine Additional Lawyers as Rising StarsSuper Lawyers
- The National Black Lawyers
- Smith Anderson Sponsors 4th Annual Women > A Force in Business Conference Attracting 1000+ Attendees
- Chambers USA
- Sharita Whitaker Discusses Minorities In The Profession Committee with North Carolina Lawyer Magazine
- Sharita Whitaker Offers Welcoming Remarks at the NCBA Minority Law Student and Attorney Meet and Greet
Events & Programming
- Co-Presenter, "Getting to Yes (Or Court) – Lessons Learned From Negotiating for Right of Way," CLE Presented by Smith Anderson, Raleigh, N.C.Speaking Engagement
- Moderator, "A Stronger Workforce: The Business Case for Second Chance Employment, Part 2," hosted by the NC ChamberSpeaking Engagement
- Panelist, "Millennials in the Workplace: A Cross-Generational Discussion," N.C. Chamber Women > A Force in Business ConferenceEvent