Around the house

In this week's moves around the house three legal number ones become the company number one, including a woman campaigning for gender balance in the board room.


An in-house lawyer helping to balance the gender gap is Olga Mack, who has been named ceo of legal tech company Parley Pro, a Los Altos-based company that provides a contract collaboration and management platform. Ms Mack has a track record of advocating to increase the number of women in corporate boardrooms. The former general counsel of Clearslide is to join the company as chief executive officer and chairperson of the board of directors.

The Entertainment Software Association has hired a new general counsel following the departure of their former gc stepped up to become the ceo. Gina Vetere has been named the vice president and general counsel of the association that stages the Electronic Entertainment Expo, also known as the E3 Expo. Ms Vetere, was formerly an attorney at Covington & Burling.

Another former general counsel making it to the top job is the new ceo of e-commerce website Overstock. Jonathan Johnson, who served as the company's legal chief from 2002 to 2005, succeeds longtime ceo and founder Patrick Byrne, who stepped down after 20 years over backlash on political comments he made. Mr Johnson has been named the permanent ceo of the company after serving in the interim role for the past month.

The Distilled Spirits Council of the US, whose membership list includes Beam Suntory Inc, Bacardi and Moët Hennessy USA, has welcomed its new chief legal officer and corporate secretary. Courtney Armour, who also was appointed clo of, has spent the past seven years as an antitrust lawyer at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati in Washington, DC, and served as a secondee lawyer for Google.

The World Wildlife Fund has begun their search for a new general counsel. Andrew Napier, the former general counsel for the UK office, has left the charity after two years for a “career break.”  

Spanish railway company Rielsfera has appointed Patricia Miranda Villar as the new head of its legal department. Prior to joining Rielsfera, Ms Villar was head of corporate legal at Cintra. She has more than 15 years of experience, and previously worked for Squire Sanders and Vodafone.

A former Amazon attorney has been appointed the first general counsel of the Lambda School. Cecilia Ziniti, formerly of Amazon and Cruise, was named general counsel of San Francisco-based outfit, an online school that helps people get jobs in the tech industry.

Another attorney jumping over the fence is Norton Rose lawyer Keith Law. Deutsche Finance International (DFI), a London-based pan-European private equity real estate investor specialising in operational real estate, has appointed Mr Law to the role of general counsel. Mr Law joins DFI after some twelve years at Norton Rose Fulbright. Since 2016 he has worked closely with DFI and advised on transactions with an aggregate transaction value in excess of GBP25 billion.

NASDAQ-listed Concert Pharmaceuticals has hired Jeffrey Munsie as its first chief legal officer and corporate secretary. In his new role Mr Munsie will be responsible for corporate legal matters such as reporting requirements, governance and intellectual property. He will report to president and CEO Roger Tung. Mr Munsie was most recently senior vice president, general counsel and head of corporate operations at Merrimack Pharmaceuticals.

A former GlaxoSmithKline lawyer has joined a biotech startup as general counsel. Philadelphia-based biotech startup Passage Bio has appointed Edgar “Chip” Cale as their new general counsel. Me Cale most recently served as GlaxoSmithKline's senior vice president of legal corporate projects, and has been a longtime in-house leader at the pharma firm.

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