Emily and Tom have a small firm that focuses solely on adoptions. They provide a full range of legal and social services, all with a personal touch, for both birth mothers and adoptive parents. Tom has been handling adoptions for over 45 years, and Emily says she has learned everything she needs to know about adoptions from working with Tom for the past several years.
Emily and Tom prefer the atmosphere of a small firm in that they believe it allows for more personal interaction with both birth parents and adoptive parents. You will always work directly with Emily or Tom and not a paralegal or secretary.
Meet Our Team
Thomas P. Lowndes, Jr.
Tom is semi-retired but still comes in from time to time. Tom is a founding member of the American Academy of Adoption Attorneys (“Quad A” attorneys), and has served as the Academy’s President. He has handled adoptions in South Carolina for over 50 years and has spoken at many adoption seminars.
Tom graduated from The Citadel with a degree in history and graduated from The University of South Carolina School of Law. He also served in the Army for 2 years.
Within the local community, Tom is active with numerous clubs and organizations, including the Charleston Library Society and the Palmetto Guard, and is a member of St. Philip’s Church. In his free time he enjoys woodworking, attending historical events and spending time with his family. He is married with 4 children and 1 grandchild.
Emily McDaniel Barrett
Emily has been handling adoptions exclusively since 2009 when she began working with Tom. She is also a member of the American Academy of Adoption Attorneys. Emily has authored materials for an adoption seminar presented by the South Carolina Bar.
Emily is a native of Charleston and graduated from the College of Charleston with degrees in History and Studio Art. She received her JD from Cumberland School of Law and her LLM from the University of Miami Law School.
Emily became an attorney because her passion is helping people. In the community, she is an active member of St. Michael’s Church and recently served on the board of the Charleston Miracle League. Emily enjoys photography, cooking and spending time on the water when she can. She is married and is an adoptive mom herself. She and her husband recently adopted their first child.
Mary M. Sheets
Mary joined Lowndes & Barrett in 2016. She grew up in Alabama, but moved to Charleston in 2015 with her husband so he could attend physical therapy school at MUSC. Mary graduated from Birmingham-Southern College with a degree in history and received her JD from Cumberland School of Law.
Mary’s favorite part of being an adoption attorney is the rewarding feeling of helping each individual throughout the adoption process. In college, Mary volunteered at a crisis pregnancy clinic, so she has experience working with young women facing unplanned pregnancies.
She is an active member of the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist and participates in a variety of community service projects with the Cathedral Women’s Club. When she’s not working on adoptions, she loves spending time with her husband and their four-legged child taking walks at one of the many beautiful parks or beaches in the Charleston area.