LOS ANGELES (June 10, 2013) –  Diane A. Thompson, who has more than 20 years of experience advising clients on employee benefits and executive compensation issues, has joined Ballard Spahr as a partner in Los Angeles, firm Chair Mark Stewart announced today.

Ms. Thompson spent more than a decade as a partner in the compensation and benefits practice at Ernst & Young in Los Angeles, where she developed and managed a global human resources consulting division serving leading clients across the market. Her arrival at Ballard Spahr will augment the firm’s noted Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation (EBEC) Group and expand its presence into the West.

“We have EBEC clients nationwide and we have long wanted to add a partner of Diane's caliber in the West," Mr. Stewart said. "She has the knowledge and experience we and our clients look for, so this is a terrific development."

Ms. Thompson is particularly well known for her skill in advising clients on complex executive compensation arrangements, including say-on-pay issues. In addition, she will help clients develop long-term strategies for compliance under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and counsel them on general compensation, retirement, and benefits issues, including those arising under ERISA and tax law.

Said Brian M. Pinheiro, who leads the firm’s EBEC Group: “In addition to having worked as an attorney in private practice, Diane has been an industry-leading consultant and executive for a global Fortune 500 company. She understands benefits and compensation issues from every perspective. She is a tremendous asset to the firm.”

Ms. Thompson will be a member of the firm’s EBEC and Health Care Groups, its Health Care Reform Initiative, and its Business and Finance Department. The attorneys in Ballard Spahr’s EBEC Group advise on benefits and compensation packages for clients ranging from publicly traded Fortune 100 corporations to privately held and regional companies. Their work focuses primarily on executive compensation, qualified retirement plans, and health and welfare benefit plans, and the impact of ERISA, federal and state tax law, PPACA, HIPAA, and other applicable law.

“Ballard Spahr has a dynamic benefits and compensation team with a well-deserved reputation for excellence in the market,” Ms. Thompson said. “I am excited to extend that capability into the West and to work with my new colleagues.”

About Ballard Spahr

Ballard Spahr LLP, a national law firm with more than 500 lawyers in 13 offices in the United States, provides a range of services in litigation, business and finance, real estate, intellectual property, and public finance. Our clients include Fortune 500 companies, financial institutions, life sciences and technology companies, health systems, investors and developers, government agencies and sponsored enterprises, educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations. The firm combines a national scope of practice with strong regional market knowledge. For more information, please visit www.ballardspahr.com.