Melanie J. Vartabedian, a partner in Ballard Spahr’s Litigation Department, has been named to Utah Business magazine's “40 Under 40” list, which honors Utah’s up-and-coming professionals who are guiding industry trends and shaping the future of their communities. This year’s group of honorees will be recognized at a ceremony on February 23, 2017, at the Grand America Hotel.

“I am deeply honored to be recognized among so many distinguished professionals,” said Ms. Vartabedian.

Ms. Vartabedian focuses on complex commercial litigation matters, including commercial contract and real estate disputes, securities litigation, and intellectual property litigation. She has represented prominent developers of luxury condominiums at ski resorts in cases involving allegations of violations of land sales practices acts, and also has successfully represented municipalities in high-stakes litigation involving special assessments.

Most recently, her reputation as a skillful litigator in state and federal courts across the country and experience representing accounting firms and auditors in Securities and Exchange Commission investigations earned her a role as counsel to the court-appointed receiver in a major receivership case filed by the SEC in 2014.

“In her relatively short legal career, Melanie has been recognized as an outstanding lawyer whose skill and insight are highly valued by her clients,” said Geoffrey A. Kahn, chair of Ballard Spahr's Litigation Department. “We are honored that she has been selected for this recognition.”

In addition to her legal acumen, Ms. Vartabedian has been a member of the cello section of the Salt Lake City Symphony, a volunteer orchestra, where she has participated in numerous concerts for children and the community. She also has been recognized by Utah Legal Services and the Utah State Bar for her successful pro bono representation of an elderly couple who lost their home to a predatory real estate mortgage company. Her other pro bono work includes helping women victims of domestic violence obtain naturalization as part of the U-Visa program, and drafting papers to help victims of Guatemalan sex trafficking rings—60 percent of whom are children.

Ms. Vartabedian also is a champion for women’s issues, both at Ballard Spahr and within the legal community. Her efforts and involvement were instrumental in the firm’s Salt Lake City office being selected as the Utah Diversity Connections Small Business Winner for 2015.

“Melanie’s dedication to her clients and her generosity in using her legal skills to help others really make her stand out among her peers,” said Mark R. Gaylord, managing partner of the firm’s Salt Lake City office. “Melanie embodies passion for the law and compassion for others. It truly is a winning combination that makes her such an asset to the firm and our office.”