(COLUMBUS, Ohio) — Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost applauds Deputy Attorney General for Major Litigation Jonathan Blanton, a member of his executive team, who was recently honored by the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) with the 2021 Senior Staff of the Year Award.
The Senior Staff of the Year Award – one of a handful bestowed annually by NAAG, a nonpartisan forum for the 56 state and territory attorneys general and their staffs – is given to a member of an attorney general’s management staff who has distinguished himself/herself “through exemplary leadership, expertise and achievement.”
Blanton’s dedication to the people of Ohio culminated most notably on Sept. 16, 2021, when AG Yost announced a historic $808 million agreement with the three largest opioid distributors in the United States.
“There is no one more deserving of this national recognition than Jonathan Blanton (“JB”), and I’m thrilled that the National Association of Attorneys General recognized as much,” AG Yost said. “JB’s passion for holding the drug manufacturers and distributors responsible for the devastation they wreaked and his commitment to ensuring that hard-hit areas of Ohio would not be forgotten in any approved settlement were nothing short of amazing.”
Blanton has served as a leader nationally in the states’ ongoing battle to hold the offending drug companies accountable, monitoring and communicating with counsel for all parties in the opioids multidistrict litigation (MDL). He multitasked in directing both Ohio’s settlement discussions with the distributors and remaining an active leader in negotiating the national settlement framework with the distributors.
In addition, Blanton has served as a subject-matter expert and trainer for NAAG on various topics, including tactics for maximizing the effectiveness of prescription drug monitoring programs, regulating medical professionals, and developing and litigating claims against pharmaceutical supply-chain participants.
Blanton has earned national acclaim and respect for his role in the extended opioids-litigation fight; more important, his work ethic, intelligence and leadership will have a real impact in communities throughout Ohio and the rest of the country.