Ballard Spahr has brought on the co-founders of corporate boutique Donelson Barry to beef up its office in Denver. Stephen Donelson and Damon Barry—who co-founded Donelson Barry in 2013 and specialize in corporate, finance and M&A work—have made the move to Ballard Spahr as partners. Shawn McIntire, tax and transactional attorney, joins the firm as of counsel.

“We have undertaken a search nationwide to grow our department,” said Brian Pinheiro, chair of Ballard Spahr's business and finance department. While Pinheiro said his firm already has a “vibrant corporate practice,” he said Ballard Spahr is looking to add more lawyers, specifically in the areas of M&A, securities and cybersecurity, as well as build a more diverse corporate practice.

“Stephen, Damon and Shawn fit right into that sweet spot of what we’re trying to do locally,” said Steven Suflas, managing partner of Ballard Spahr’s Denver office.

Ballard Spahr also is looking to grow its presence among emerging companies. Donelson Barry had clients in that space in the technology and pharmaceutical sectors, said Ballard Spahr business and finance partner Michele Rowland, who also serves as a member of the firm’s strategic planning committee.

Donelson and Barry, long-time Denver residents, have long-standing local connections. Mr. Pinheiro said that combining Ballard Spahr’s national corporate practice with Donelson Barry’s local ties is a win-win for both sides. Mr. Barry said aligning with a larger firm simply made the most sense for his small shop going forward.

“We knew we needed to grow,” said Mr. Barry, noting that Ballard Spahr’s backing will allow him and Donelson to pitch their services to new companies and retain their current clients. “As our client base continues to be more and more sophisticated, they required greater depth and breadth of services,” added Mr. Donelson.