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Facebook GC: a great hot seat

Speculating on who will succeed Colin Stretch as the next general counsel at Facebook is our idea of fun water cooler talk.  Corporate Counsel quoted several law department focused legal recruiters for a public version of just that.

I am so enamored with this topic that I chose to elaborate on my opinion here: The Dream GC job.

We title my eNews column “Culture Fit” with intention.  To me, what makes in-house recruiting so much more enjoyable versus law firm recruiting is that each company has truly unique qualities:  different products, services, and cultures.  And while I love all of it, I find myself particularly interested in companies that are run by their founders.  I even pay attention to that dynamic when making personal stock choices.  With obvious exceptions (yes, I lost money on Groupon to be sure), my investments in founder operated companies have far outperformed other investments.  But I digress.

The takeaway here is that Culture Fit is not the same as Culture Change.  Sometimes the latter is needed.  But 100% of the time, CEOs want a general counsel (i.e. Consigliere!) who will align with his or her vision for the company.  And when the CEO is also the company’s founder, then you can add bold typeface over 100%.  

Evers Legal is not handling the Facebook search.  It’s my ultimate “I wish,” as one downside of staying small and independent is that we lack the kind of contacts and high profile placement history that would allow us to get in the door and compete for it.  So, I will watch this one from the sidelines.  But it does motivate me to up our game so to speak.  I am going after more GC-level work in 2019.  Let’s see how David does versus Goliath.  Stay tuned.

Wishing you all a very Happy Holiday season, Mike

2019 starts on heels of record placement year

Thank you for making 2018 the best year in the history of our firm. We were pleased to serve a variety of outstanding companies from multiple industries this year, including:

  • Global chemical distribution leader – Univar
  • For-profit education pioneer – Adtalem
  • America’s favorite helpful place – Ace Hardware
  • Food distribution giant – US Foods
  • The #1 parking company in the United States – SP+
  • Faster than fast growing Internet platform innovator – Ubiquiti Networks

Our engagements featured traditional direct hire placements with base salaries ranging from $185,000 to more than $300,000. Our most common engagement term was a $10,000 retainer, applied toward a contingency success-only fee equal to 25% of base salary. We find the modest retainer creates a meaningful partnership and commitment, while maintaining a healthy outcome-based model for achieving win-win results. More 

Another “conversion” hire

Congratulations Ricky Kalra!  Ricky has been working long-term via Evers Legal as an Adjunct Counsel with US Foods.  We just learned that Ricky will be hired directly by US Foods and we could not be happier for him.  He worked hard in a contract role, he was patient, and he is now being rewarded for both.

This marks the 6th time in 2018 that an attorney who started as an Adjunct Counsel via Evers Legal has been hired directly by our law department client.  The lingo in our world for this is a temp to perm conversion.  We are careful to never promise such an outcome when someone pursues an Adjunct Counsel assignment via Evers Legal.  But here is, indeed, more evidence that sometimes it’s a very effective way to get one’s foot in the door.

As a reminder to our clients, we have a singular focus:  placing attorneys (and attorneys only) with corporations.  We do not handle law firm work.  Within this singular focus, however, we do offer two service lines:  traditional direct hire search, at the highest General Counsel level to specialized non-managerial level hires, AND on-site assignment placement.  For the latter, our attorneys are fairly paid W2 benefits eligible employees, giving you the flexibility to add talent to your law department without adding to your payroll.

Congrats Ritu Vig

Congratulations Ritu Vig for joining SP+ as its new Senior Vice President & Deputy General Counsel.  SP+ is a $1B+ publicly traded leader in parking and transportation services, based in Chicago.

Ritu’s background includes senior level in-house positions with R.R. Donnelley & Sons and Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company, prior to which she did her BigLaw teeth cutting at Katten Muchin and Dykema Gossett.  She holds an MBA from The University of Chicago and a JD from Illinois.

Evers Legal is grateful to SP+ for the opportunity to handle this search.

Congrats Lisa Chessare

Congratulations to Lisa Chessare, who has joined the law department of publicly traded for-profit education leader Adtalem as Senior Counsel.  Evers Legal proudly facilitated this placement.  Lisa is a graduate of Northwestern Law School who cut her teeth as a corporate and securities Associate for five years with Schiff Hardin; she had most recently been in-house as Senior Counsel for Commercial Legal Services with Walgreen Co. from 2011 – 2017.

Congrats Stephanie Gaines

Congratulations to Stephanie Gaines, who joined the law department of publicly traded for-profit education leader Adtalem as Senior Counsel.  Evers Legal proudly facilitated the placement.  Stephanie is a former Partner with Hinshaw and Culbertson who most recently worked in-house from 2006 to 2017 as Senior Counsel for Employment with Walgreen Co.

Corporate Counsel magazine

A note of thanks.  For years, I wrote the career advice column for Inside Counsel.  American Lawyer Media purchased Inside Counsel a few years back and slowly merged it into Corporate Counsel (an ALM holding), which is now the dominant trade publication for in-house attorneys.

Corporate Counsel kindly invited me to continue in a similar role for them, and you will see links to the most current career advice column at our home page.

Please also look for an upcoming article by Dan Clark in the September issue of Corporate Counsel.  Dan is a terrific writer who is taking on the challenge of reporting on the ongoing evolution of the General Counsel role… from back office cop to mission critical business partner in the C-Suite.

Mike Evers

Benefits for our Adjunct Counsel

In the past two years, our Adjunct Counsel service has “blown up” among law departments in the Chicago area.  For clients and potential clients:  At your request, we can provide examples of dozens of successful assignments over the past decade, resumes of attorneys who are working as Adjunct Counsel for us now, and of course resumes of outstanding in-house counsel who are available to meet your specific need.  We have a terrific commercial generalist available (David L.) who is coming off a family leave absence coverage assignment in mid-August, and an experienced intellectual property attorney (Patti S.) who offers tremendous value.  Just examples.

One important change that has been in place for over a year now, but we want to call attention to this for any attorney who may wish to apply for our Adjunct Counsel opportunities:  we offer benefits including health care coverage.  We were behind other larger staffing firms (like Axiom) on this issue in the past, but our volume and infrastructure has grown to match the competition on health care benefits.  This enables longer term assignments and longer term relationships with Adjunct Counsel who may wish to work on consecutive assignments.

Email info@everslegal.com to inquire about Adjunct Counsel work.

Univar: Congratulations Julie Halperin

We are pleased to congratulate Julie Halperin on joining Univar as Senior Counsel.  Julie received her joint JD/MBA from Northwestern in 2009, cut her teeth as a corporate finance associate with Goldberg Kohn, and most recently served as Senior Counsel with BMO Harris.  Julie also worked as a Consultant for Accenture prior to attending law school.

Thank you to the legal and HR leadership teams at Univar for partnering with our firm on this engagement.

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