Calfee’s Managing Partner since 2004, Brent Ballard serves as a trusted attorney and leader at the firm and within the community.
Throughout his legal career, Brent has been a respected business and legal adviser to privately held business clients, operating as in-house counsel to the management teams and the multi-generational family owners of those businesses.
During the nearly 20 years that Brent has led the firm as Managing Partner, he and the Management Committee have focused on strategic growth initiatives that, at their core, have aligned with the fundamental goal of serving clients by attracting the best legal talent from an increasingly diverse, entrepreneurial and collaborative team of attorneys and staff. The firm has grown from two offices in Ohio to six offices across three states and the District of Columbia, serving clients in many major metropolitan areas across the U.S. and in Canada, Europe and Asia. Brent's legacy as Managing Partner includes leading Calfee through the Great Recession and the COVID-19 pandemic while preserving the firm's unique culture based on mutual trust and respect for the firm's members, its clients and community partners.
Brent has championed diversifying the legal industry, and he actively participates in community-focused initiatives that support the educational success of diverse students and the professional success of diverse attorneys and professionals. Over the past 15+ years, Calfee has worked diligently to recruit, retain, and promote women and diverse leaders within the firm and the business community. This work continues to be a focus area for Brent as he seeks to leverage his contacts in legal and business circles to provide resources and support for diversity and inclusion goals.
Brent joined Calfee in 1985, was elected partner in 1993, joined the Executive Committee in 1999 and the Management Committee in 2002. He was elected Managing Partner in 2004.
He has served on a variety of boards and committees in Northeast Ohio's business, education, and service community, including the following active board membership positions:
- Greater Cleveland Partnership, the largest metropolitan chamber of commerce in the nation
- Playhouse Square Foundation, Cleveland’s renowned performing arts district
- University School, K-12 private school for boys in Greater Cleveland
- Bridgestone Senior Players Championship, one of five major championships on golf's PGA Tour Champions, and a major fundraiser for local charities
- Bluecoats, a charitable organization contributing significant financial and education assistance to families of local first responders who lost their lives in the line of duty
In addition, Brent is the immediate past board president of the Union Club of Cleveland and past board president of University School and the 50 Club. At Case Western Reserve University School of Law, he serves as a member of the Society of Benchers (hall of fame) and the Visiting Committee (business advisers). He was a member of Leadership Cleveland, Class of 2003.