Bob Saner is senior counsel in Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville's legislative, healthcare, education, and nonprofit practices.

Bob Saner considers himself an “old fashioned Washington lawyer." Rather than specializing in just one area of law, Bob works in multiple fields where the common denominator is getting things done in Congress, the Executive Branch or the Federal courts.

After law school, Bob served in the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (now the Department of Health and Human Services) and the Executive Office of the President. Bob credits several mentors for educating him on how things get done in Washington.

Throughout his career, Bob has:

  • Served as lead counsel to The Commonwealth Medical College in Northeast Pennsylvania (now Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine), one of the newest and most innovative medical schools in the United States. He led a team of Powers lawyers assisting in all aspects of creating the new medical university, including incorporation, tax-exempt organization issues, governance, licensure and accreditation, financing and general corporate and contract advice to its Board of Trustees and management.
  • Served for more than four decades as Washington Counsel to the Medical Group Management Association, working on a wide variety of legislative, regulatory, and public policy issues of importance to medical group practices of all types and sizes throughout the country.
  • Served as General Counsel for the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies from its inception. In this capacity, he helped represent the nation’s largest public water suppliers in the 1996 reauthorization of the Safe Drinking Water Act. This public health statute ensures the quality of Americans' drinking water and is one of the last significant pieces of environmental legislation to move through Congress on a bi-partisan basis.
  • Created a tax-exempt, nonprofit, information sharing and analysis center (“ISAC”) on behalf of leaders in the water supply and wastewater communities after credible threats to the security of public water supplies. Created in the wake of 9/11, the Water ISAC was one of the first of its kind in the country, and has worked closely with USEPA, the Department of Homeland Security, and other government agencies to proactively protect water supplies and treatment, distribution, and processing facilities.
  • As Washington Counsel to the Pain Care Coalition, wrote the first comprehensive federal legislation addressing pain care research, education, and quality care, and steered to passage on a bi-partisan basis the Veterans Pain Care Act, the Military Pain Care Act, and pain care provisions of the Affordable Care Act.

Bob is particularly proud of his four decades of pro bono representation for the National Organization on Disability where he had the opportunity to work with leaders from business, government, education, healthcare, and the disability advocacy community on a wide array of programs and projects encouraging the full participation of individuals with disabilities in all aspects of American life, with a particular emphasis on employment.

In addition to his client work, Bob served as President of the Powers firm and Chair of its Executive Committee from 2000 through April 2007.

Practice Areas


J.D., Harvard University, 1972

A.B., cum laude, Princeton University, 1969

Bar Memberships

District of Columbia

Honors & Awards

American Academy of Pain Medicine Patient Advocacy Award 2012

National Organization on Disability “Hat’s Off” Award

Repeated Recognition by Chambers USA as one of America’s Leading Health Lawyers

The Best Lawyers in America®, Nonprofit / Charity Law, 2021-2024

Memberships & Activities

Member, American Health Lawyers Association