Georgia Lawyers for the Arts named Ballard Spahr its 2015 Firm of the Year for its help with pro bono patent cases in particular. Dr. Mary Anthony Merchant, a partner in the firm's Atlanta office, led a team of 21 Ballard lawyers who donated almost 400 pro bono hours to the nonprofit this year and took on more cases than any other firm. This year Georgia Lawyers for the Arts started acting as the regional clearinghouse for pro bono patent cases referred by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Ballard's Atlanta office, which is the hub of its patent practice, took on many cases in that area.

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