Vicky Tsilas, an attorney who served as the U.S. Treasury Department’s top legal and policy adviser in regulatory matters involving tax-exempt bonds and tax credit bonds, has rejoined Ballard Spahr as a partner in the firm’s Public Finance Department, firm Chair Mark Stewart announced today.

Ms. Tsilas, who will be based in the firm’s Washington, D.C., office, focuses her practice on all aspects of federal tax law, including taxation of municipal bonds and tax-exempt organizations. She has represented nonprofit organizations and state and local governments as bond counsel in tax-exempt bond financings, and has represented clients in Internal Revenue Service audits of tax-exempt bond financings involving hospital systems, universities, and solid waste and sewage facilities.

“Vicky has gained substantial federal government experience in her time away from Ballard, which is critical for a top-tier tax partner’s resume,” Mr. Stewart said. “She is one of the most knowledgeable attorneys in her field and a terrific person, so it goes without saying that we are thrilled to have her return to our public finance team.”

Ms. Tsilas was a tax associate at Ballard Spahr from February 1999 to April 2003, and of counsel from May 2008 to June 2010. At Treasury, Ms. Tsilas served for the past two years as an attorney-adviser in the Office of Tax Legislative Counsel’s Office of Tax Policy. In this role, she had primary responsibility for developing and reviewing IRS regulations and other IRS-published guidance dealing with all aspects of tax-exempt and tax credit bond financings.

In addition, Ms. Tsilas has served as the IRS’s Assistant Branch Chief, Financial Institutions and Products Division. Her responsibilities there included working on regulations on payments in lieu of taxes, guidance on certain provisions related to research agreements, proposed regulations governing practice before the IRS (Circular 230) as they relate to tax-exempt bonds, final remedial action regulations, and a number of arbitrage-related issues.

“Vicky’s reputation as a leading authority on tax-exempt bonds will be invaluable as we seek to strengthen the Public Finance Department’s tax bench in Washington,” said Department Chair William C. Rhodes. “Her familiarity with our client base will ensure that she hits the ground running in her practice.”

Ballard Spahr is home to one of the premier public finance practices in the country, participating since 1987 in the issuance of more than $350 billion of tax-exempt obligations in all states, the District of Columbia, and American territories. Its nearly 60 public finance attorneys represent state and local governments and authorities, nonprofit organizations, investment banks, and banking institutions in virtually every type of bond transaction.

“When I decided I was ready to return to private practice, there was no question about where I would go,” Ms. Tsilas said. “Ballard Spahr has a nationally recognized and diverse bond practice, and is particularly well known for handling the most difficult tax-driven structures. Returning to the firm is a natural step in the evolution of my practice.”

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