21 August 2019

Around the house

As the new academic year beckons, two universities hiring new general counsel go to the top of the class in this week's moves around the house.


Charles Marshall has been named vice chancellor and general counsel for the University of North Carolina after a highly competitive national search, starting September 16. Mr Marshall is currently is a partner at the Raleigh law firm Brooks, Pierce, McLendon, Humphrey & Leonard LLP, where his work focuses on a wide range of topics, including data privacy, digital media, business litigation and election and ethics law. He also is outside general counsel to the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters. Mr Marshall is a UNC-Chapel Hill alumnus twice over gaining his BA and JD there. He succeeds Mark Merritt, who left Carolina at the end of 2018, with Steve Keadey and Kara Simmons having since served as interim general counsel.

Donna Gooden Payne, university counsel and vice chancellor for legal affairs at East Carolina University, has been named University vice president and general counsel, effective October 21 following a national search. University general counsel has oversight for all institutional legal matters, inclusive of the Medical Center, and leads the attorneys and day-to-day operations of the University’s Office of Counsel. She succeeds Gail Norris who in March announced her retirement effective at the conclusion of a successful search for a new vice president and general counsel. Ms Payne has been serving as chief legal counsel at ECU since 2008, advising its chancellor, board of trustees, and senior administrators on legal issues affecting the institution.

Multinational company Insurance Australia Group has appointed a new group general counsel, who join from TransGrid. Peter Horton, who is currently serving as executive manager of legal, governance and risk at TransGrid, has been appointed to the role. Prior to TransGrid, Mr Horton was the group general counsel and company secretary at both QBE Insurance and Woolworths. He will join IAG at the end of 2019.

Travelers has named Yafit Cohn as its first chief sustainability officer. In this newly created position, Ms Cohn will lead Travelers’ environmental, social and governance (ESG) efforts across the organization and will serve as a member of the company’s ESG and Disclosure Committees. “Deeply rooted in our culture is the recognition that industry-leading results are inextricably linked with gratified customers and business partners, engaged employees and healthy communities,” said Alan Schnitzer, chairman and chief executive officer of Travelers. Ms Cohn joined Travelers in September 2017 as associate group general counsel and currently serves as chair of the Society for Corporate Governance’s newly formed sustainability practices committee.

Revlon has snapped up an IBM cybersecurity lawyer as their new general counsel. Cari Robinson succeeds Mitra Hormozi, who will remain a consultant to the Manhattan-based cosmetics and fragrance giant. Ms Robinson has been a long-serving in-house attorney at IBM.

Jodie Kelley, general counsel of The Software Alliance has been named chief executive office of another trade association, the Electronic Transactions Association (ETA). She moves on September 3.

STORE Capital has hired their general counsel and secretary. Chad Freed, who previously worked at Universal Technical Institute, has joined the NYSE-listed company as executive vice president, general counsel and secretary. Mr Freed is succeeding Michael Bennett who passed away this summer.

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