Dara N. Smith is an associate in the firm’s Finance Department, focusing her practice on public finance matters. She has served as bond counsel, underwriter’s counsel and borrower’s counsel on a variety of public infrastructure financing, including charter school, university and multifamily housing matters. She has experience representing governmental entities, health and educational institutions and other private entities developing infrastructure projects. She also has experience in drafting bond documents, official statements, remarketing circulars, continuing disclosure agreements and bond resolutions relating to tax-exempt bond issuances on behalf of local development corporations, industrial development agencies and other governmental agencies. Dara finds fulfillment in helping healthcare and higher education institutions improve their facilities to better serve local communities.
Prior to Ballard Spahr, Dara worked as a finance associate at a major multinational investment bank, where she reviewed and analyzed FINRA rules and provided regulatory guidance on institutional securities businesses pertaining to outsourcing arrangements. Dara focuses her pro- bono practice related to child advocacy and clemency matters. Dara is a former Teach For America Corps member and remains active in the Teach For America alumni network.
Judge Gerald Bruce Lee, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, 2017
Judge Fern Flanagan Saddler, Superior Court of the District of Columbia, 2016
Pennsylvania Bar Association
New York State Bar Association, Business Law Section, Derivatives and Structured Products Committee
American Bar Association, Business Law Committee
Recognition & Accomplishments
The Legal Intelligencer "Lawyers on the Fast Track," 2022
Legal 500, Finance - Restructuring (including bankruptcy) - municipal, 2022
Board Memberships & Community Service
Teach for America, Alumni CorpsMember
Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity, Pardon Clinic Volunteer
American University, Washington College of Law (J.D. 2017)
Article Editor, “The Modern American Brief”
George Washington University (B.A. 2012)