Joanne Phillips, former Director of the Bureau of Real Estate for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, has rejoined Ballard Spahr's Real Estate Department as a partner in the Philadelphia office, firm Chair Arthur Makadon announced.

Ms. Phillips was a partner at the firm until 2006, when she was asked to head the Bureau, which is in the Department of General Services. As Bureau Director, she oversaw a portfolio of 1.5 billion square feet of Commonwealth-owned space and 7.7 million square feet of leased space, with annual lease expenditures in excess of $108 million. Last year alone, Ms. Phillips handled over 1.5 million square feet of leasing on behalf of the Commonwealth.

Ms. Phillips expects to broaden her traditional real estate practice to encompass government relations and public-private projects. She returns as a member of the firm's Real Estate Development, Zoning and Land Use, Government Relations and Regulatory Affairs, and P3/Infrastructure Groups.

"Joanne is that rare individual who excels at everything she does professionally and who is an absolute joy to work with," Mr. Makadon said. "Her experience overseeing the real estate operations of the Commonwealth will make her an even greater asset to the firm and our clients. It is great to have her back."

Michael Sklaroff, Chair of Ballard Spahr's Real Estate Department, agreed. "Joanne's experience at the Bureau of Real Estate will be particularly valuable to our clients working on acquisitions, leasing, and sales," Mr. Sklaroff said. "At a time when public-private transactions are center stage, her experience will be of extraordinary value to our clients."

As an associate and then a partner at Ballard Spahr, Ms. Phillips built a solid reputation with her commercial development and land-use work. She also took a one-year leave from the firm to work as Special Assistant to the Managing Director of the City of Philadelphia on special projects involving zoning and business regulation.

Ms. Phillips is excited about returning to Ballard Spahr. "I want to reconnect with former colleagues and clients," she said. "I'm also looking forward to supporting the firm's outstanding real estate practice with experience I gained in government. As Director, I was fortunate to be able to work on almost every type of complex real estate transaction. Government service is an opportunity for valuable insight into the legislative and regulatory processes, which will inform our ongoing efforts to support clients' needs."

Ms. Phillips is a graduate of Ursinus College and Widener University School of Law.