All posts by Mike Evers

The GC who started as a “temp”

Evers-Legal-Executive-Search-Culture-Fit-Feb-2018When Stephen Sitley was named senior vice president, general counsel and chief compliance officer at Sears Holdings Corp., my mind raced through the Way Back machine to a fond memory of my roots as a legal recruiter.

In 1993, I was cutting my teeth and learning this business with a legal staffing firm called The Wallace Law Registry (now part of Kelly Services). My boss and mentor Shelley Wallace had landed a big fish in the Chicago in-house legal market—an opportunity to recruit talent for Sears. This goes back to a time when Sears’ headquarters was based in a tall tower bearing its name. Sears was under a hiring freeze, so Shelley convinced the general counsel at the time to try an unconventional approach to staffing his department—use something called “contract attorneys.”

My marching orders as Shelley’s new and inexperienced legal recruiter in Chicago … find “permanent placement” caliber talent willing to work for law departments via a third-party employer. We avoided using the word “temporary,” as that carried a negative perception on the talent level and role for which the lawyer was deployed. Law departments pioneered the use of contract attorneys in the ’90s, long before law firms began using a lower paid variety for dead end document review work. More 

Adtalem, Senior Corporate Counsel (Higher Education)

This is an industry specific search.  We seek an attorney with Higher Education experience.  Either for-profit or non-profit experience.  You will support several Title IV Institutions in a broad ranging role that includes:  Serve as Board Counsel to Board of Trustees; handle industry specific commercial agreements; advise on accreditor and licensing issues, sponsored research, and other matters related to higher education and for-profit education issues; develop and modify policies and best practices for compliance with industry regulations and the disciplinary process.

Competitive compensation includes a generous Annual equity grant.  5+ years of legal experience, minimum 3 years of Higher Education industry experience.  Ideally, you will have experience with consumer protection laws, accreditor and licensing compliance, and commercial agreements.

Adtalem recently moved its headquarters into beautiful new space in downtown Chicago, and this is a new position with a growing department.  Search is national, relocation is available.

EVERS LEGAL SEARCH has been exclusively retained to source candidates for this opening with Adtalem.  Inquiries made directly to Adtalem will be routed to our search firm.

Email resume to or call 312-225-1144.  Thank you.

Hitting on All Cylinders (2017 style)

Evers-Legal-In-house-Legal-Recuiter-Dec17-QAI hope you are feeling as good about your employer as I am this holiday season.

2017 has been one of the most enjoyable years of my career, and I am extraordinarily thankful to our clients, candidates and friends of our firm for this result. We handled interesting and challenging searches for great companies such as Adtalem, Baxter, Re:Sources USA and Principal Financial Group. We were proud to place the first in-house attorney with a Crain’s Fast Fifty company, Maven Wave. And we have several Adjunct Counsel on secondments with Fortune 500 law departments.

We improved our Adjunct Counsel offering so that our contract attorneys can opt into health care and other benefits. And I tweaked our traditional permanent search pricing structure to reflect how companies want to go about their Senior Counsel to Assistant General Counsel level searches. Moreover, the year is closing with the likelihood of an exciting Deputy General Counsel (with succession planning in mind) search in Q1 of 2018 that we will handle confidentially. More 

Principal Financial Group positions (Des Moines, IA)

Our wonderful long-term client Principal Financial Group has a history of happy in-house attorneys who love their jobs and stay for a long time.  Relocation is fully covered.  We realize that Des Moines, Iowa is appealing to some, and a non-starter for others.  Great cost of living, larger city amenities with the feel of smaller city convenience.  If Des Moines is for you, then please consider the following openings in PFG’s law department and call Mike Evers at 312-225-1144 for details, or email your resume to

Litigation Counsel

This lawyer will work on a variety of litigated matters including Group Life and DI, class actions, and general litigation as well as subpoenas and regulatory investigations.  

ERISA Counsel

This lawyer will support RIS FSA with qualified plan issues and potentially RIS Annuities with retail annuities.  Pension plan work will include issues relating to pension plan operations and qualification, investment issues, product design, fiduciary/transactional operations, prohibited transaction rules and the ERISA/IRC provisions impacting the same.  The pension plan work will include regulatory compliance and advocacy work.  Retail annuities work would include work with both fixed and variable annuities and would require knowledge of both insurance and securities laws applicable to annuities. 

 Asset Management Counsel

This lawyer will provide legal services to a number of internal clients on a variety of matters in support of a global asset management business.  Candidates should have strong corporate and transactional experience. Experience with laws and regulations applicable to investment management including US and international regulations regarding investment advisers and investment funds is a plus. 

Inquiries and resume submissions to:, 312-225-1144

6 – 10 months (begin Jan), in Loop, M&A/Contracts

Our Fortune 500 law department client is seeking a full-time on-site secondee to assist on a divestiture.  M&A experience desired, but a strong in-house commercial contracts background will be considered as well.  Position is located in downtown Chicago.  Strong hourly rate via our firm.  Client name provided upon inquiry, we simply do not wish to make that public at this time.  Please email to express interest.

Senior Counsel, Volvo Financial Services (NC)

Our client, Volvo Financial Services (VFS), is the finance arm of the Volvo Group… one of the world’s leading manufacturers of trucks, buses and construction equipment, drive systems for marine and industrial applications, and is the world’s leading producer of heavy-diesel engines.

We are looking for an attorney with commercial finance or capital markets experience for a Senior Counsel position reporting to the General Counsel of VFS.  The position is located in Greensboro, North Carolina (relo assistance is available).  Ideally 5+ years out of law school, coming straight from a law firm corporate finance practice, a boutique, or a financial institution.

You will work with sales, operations and credit functions in developing and implementing necessary legal policies and documentation for commercial truck, tractor, trailer, construction equipment, bus and other specialized transportation and commercial equipment financing products in the Unites States.  UCC Article 2A and Article 9 commercial contracts.  Support compliance initiatives, such as FCPA, anti-money laundering, and data privacy.  Occasional outside counsel management over litigation/bankruptcy matters and support on restructuring of troubled transactions.

If interested, please email your resume to or call 312-225-1144 with questions.  Thank you.


Adtalem – Employment Counsel

Employment Counsel

             Our client, Adtalem Global Education (NYSE: ATGE), is a leading education provider and parent company to institutions of higher learning internationally.  Adtalem is moving its headquarters to downtown Chicago on December 1, and this position will be located at the new HQ. 

             The Employment Counsel:

Partners with HR leadership by providing practical legal support and day-to-day employment counseling on a wide variety of matters including wage and hour practices, accommodation requests and the interactive process, benefits support, discipline, discrimination and harassment investigations, and recruiting and hiring practices, etc.  

Participates in the development of legally compliant policies and practices in all areas of labor and employment in addition to developing and conducting training on such policies and practices.  

Represents ATGE and its institutions in response to threatened employment-related claims, demand letters, and before government agencies in employment discrimination, harassment, retaliation and wage matters, including the EEOC, its state counterparts, the DOL and NLRB.  

Provides support and guidance on restructures and reductions-in-force, including OWBPA disclosure requirements.  

Negotiates and prepares agreements including faculty agreements, consulting agreements, separation and severance agreements and definite term employment contracts.

Partners with HR senior leadership in creating and implementing polices and maintains working knowledge of organization policies and federal, state and local legislation and updates policies when necessary.  

Supports institutions subject to OFFCP requirements by providing guidance on development of affirmative action plans and goals and compliance audits.

Manages outside counsel in handling employment litigation, as needed.

Completes other duties as assigned.     

        Our ideal candidate will be a subject matter expert focused on the employment law needs of major corporations, either in an outside counsel capacity or as in-house counsel.  Prefer 6+ years out of law school.  Local candidates preferred.  Competitive compensation includes an attractive equity component.  Please send your resume to or call us at 312-225-1144 with questions.  Evers Legal is working on this opportunity exclusively; inquiries made directly to Adtalem will be routed to our search firm.

Legal Department Operations, Delegate it to an Expert

Evers-Legal-Executive-Recruiting-Culture-Fit-09-2017By working exclusively with corporate legal departments and eschewing law firm recruiting, Evers Legal stays in tune with the evolution of in-house culture.  Although we are best known for traditional direct hire search and placement of experienced in-house counsel, we have broadened our service offerings over the years to meet the niche needs of law departments.

About 10 years ago we began providing  “adjunct counsel.”  I wanted to create an option for on-site secondments that would be based on quality rather than volume. Our vision was to fill your contract attorney needs with talent that exceeded the expectations often associated with that term. Sometimes our adjunct counsel are even converted to direct hire positions, as happened just last month for Greg Lacey. A former Dykema partner and all around great guy, Greg was on an assignment for us with Adtalem, a for-profit education company, before landing permanently there. Congrats Greg!

And now, for the first time in several years, we are extending our service offering once again. We are now your go-to search firm when you need a legal department operations (LDO) professional. This position is a natural fit within our niche law department expertise and network. Moreover, individuals with the right experience to fill these roles are not yet available in large numbers. Put bluntly, a do-it-yourself approach to recruiting a top shelf LDO will be frustrating. Let us help! More 

Career advice

Preparing to become a General Counsel, corporate politics, asking for a raise, networking… we have covered a range of topics in our monthly career advice column for Inside Counsel.

Please scroll through for topics that might be relevant for you.  But also:  we welcome suggestions!  What is keeping you up at night?  What information would be most helpful?  Please write to me at with ideas and requests.  Thank you.


Congrats Greg Lacey

I am very pleased to relay a nice outcome that originated with our Adjunct Counsel service offering.  Greg Lacey was on assignment through our firm with client Adtalem (the leader in for-profit education services).  Greg is a former Partner with Dykema Gossett; he is a  stellar employment attorney and litigator.  Towards the end of Greg’s assignment, he interviewed for a direct hire position with Adtalem and was recently hired.  Congratulations Greg!

While we are always careful to never promise direct hire employment as a possible outcome when an attorney works on-site as one of our Adjunct Counsel… “conversions” to direct hire are indeed win-win outcomes for all involved when they occur.  That’s why we endeavor to provide permanent placement caliber attorneys for all of our Adjunct Counsel assignments.

Thank you, Greg.  Thank you, Adtalem.  Mike Evers