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FEATURED MOVER | Amy M. McClain, Ballard Spahr

Amy M. McClain, a partner in the Baltimore office of Ballard Spahr, a national law firm with more than 600 attorneys in 15 offices across the country, was named chair of the firm’s real estate department, which has more than 100 lawyers nationwide.

McClain is the first female to serve as the firm’s real estate department chair, the first department chair based outside of Philadelphia and the first non-Baby Boomer to hold the post. Her practice emphasizes affordable housing and community development.

Amy McClain, chair of the real estate department at Ballard Spahr.


Resides in:

Otterbein, Baltimore city


Bachelor of Arts in political science, American University; J.D., University of Maryland School of Law

If you had not chosen your current profession, what profession would you choose and why?

I was enamored with archeology as a kid.  I sometimes daydream about that and the ability to solve age-old mysteries. Doing something that takes you outside and is a mix of science and history is really appealing when time at the desk and on conference calls becomes a bit much.

Recent vacation:

This past May, as my first foray back to traveling, I went to Birmingham for a long weekend and met up with a group of women who have become good friends through work with the American Bar Association Forum on Affordable Housing and Community Development. We visited The Legacy Museum and the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery and also went to Selma as part of a day trip to places important in the fight for civil rights.  We also spent time reconnecting after the long time apart due to the pandemic to celebrate and commemorate milestones, achievements and transitions in our lives that came along over the prior 15 months.

When I want to relax, I … : 

Practice piano.  I am not very good, but am learning along with my daughter and find that a bit of piano clears space in my brain and settles my nerves.  I also enjoy sitting on my deck in the cool of the evening in a swing chair that turns out to have been a very good COVID impulse purchase.

Favorite book:

Some favorites are tough; it’s hard to pick one.  But, I’ve particularly enjoyed “The Goldfinch,” by Donna Tartt, “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah (a bird theme, perhaps?) and am slowly making my way through “Anna Karenina.

Favorite quotation:

Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work.  It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.  – Unknown.