As the National Football League (NFL) season approaches, Richard Thigpen, general counsel of the Carolina Panthers, has been fired by team owner David Tepper as part of an overhaul following a sex scandal involving prior owner Jerry Richardson. According to reports, Richardson touched female employees, asked them sexual questions, and tried to trick them into kissing him. Although Mr Thigpen had nothing to do with these actions beyond reviewing non-disclosure agreements with team employees, it is seen as a timely reminder that general counsel can also be victims of leadership abuses. Mr Thigpen had been with the team for over 20 years.
UK television network ITV has parted with longstanding general counsel Andrew Garard, after over a decade in the role. ITV confirmed Mr Garard will leave his position on 31 July. He joined ITV in 2007 as group legal director and GC, before becoming company secretary two years later. He also sits on the board of ITN, which he chaired until 2016. An industry veteran, Mr Garard started his career in 1993 as an associate in the corporate team at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer. He will stay at ITV, providing assistance to the board, while a search for his successor is underway, saying ‘now the right time for me to move on.’
Simon Coles, former general counsel of MarketInvoice, has joined fintech start-up Capital On Tap as its first legal head. Capital On Tap provides tech-driven funding facilities to SMEs and enables customers to access instant funding for business growth. Mr Coles, who started his career at Allen & Overy, was a banking and finance partner at TLT and Fieldfisher. Until recently he acted as senior legal consultant to Goldman Sachs.
Research Triangle Park, North Carolina-based G1 Therapeutics, a clinical-stage oncology company, has recruited Stillman Hanson to the newly created position of general counsel. Mr Hanson was associate general counsel and vice president at IQVIA, where he led the Quintiles legal team in the $20 billion merger of Quintiles and IMS Health to create QuintilesIMS, now IQVIA. Before joining Quintiles in 2010, he practiced corporate law, including M&A, commercial contracting, securities reporting and corporate governance.
Janus Henderson Group, which has around $372 billion in assets under management, has promoted Michelle Rosenberg to the position of general counsel and company secretary of Janus Henderson Investors. Ms Rosenberg, who has been with asset manager since 2003, now oversees the firm’s legal and internal audit functions and reports to co-CEOs Richard Weil and Andrew Formica. She will be a member of the firm’s executive committee and based primarily in Denver, Colorado. She succeeds Jacqui Irvine, who has retired from the firm. ‘After an exhaustive search, which included several highly qualified external applicants, we couldn’t be more pleased that we found our best candidate internally,’ Mr Formica explained.
Another internal move is Ama Walton, who has topped the legal Charts at BMG Music taking the top legal job. BMG Music is one of the biggest music publishing companies in the world. The job is a promotion to the position of global legal leader. Ms Walton, a German in-house attorney and music industry veteran, also takes the role of chief human resources officer.