General Counsel

Location
Princeton, Mercer County
Posted
May 06, 2014
Position Summary: Princeton University, chartered in 1746, is the fourth-oldest college in the United States. It aims to produce scholarship and teaching of unsurpassed quality. Princeton adheres to the conviction that research and education should be mutually reinforcing pursuits rather than independent priorities, and the University plays a unique role within American higher education by virtue of its distinctive emphasis on undergraduate and doctoral programs. Princeton's beautiful campus is home to a vibrant residential life, including an enormous array of extracurricular activities designed to prepare students for lives of leadership and engagement. The University community, including an active and deeply loyal alumni body, is warm, inclusive and is united by a shared sense of purpose. A commitment to the University's unofficial motto "Princeton in the nation's service and in the service of all nations" is pervasive. The University is ideally situated in central New Jersey. The Princeton community has some 30,000 residents and is located approximately one hour from both New York City and Philadelphia. With approximately 6,000 benefits-eligible employees, Princeton is one of Mercer County's largest private employers and one of the largest in the region. Its diverse workforce provides services year-round to the residential community and includes the broad array of occupations that compose a world-class teaching and research university. The University plays a major role in the educational, cultural, and economic life of the area by bringing more than 750,000 visitors and $2 billion in economic activity to the region each year. Princeton University invites applications and nominations for the position of general counsel. The general counsel is the University's chief legal affairs officer and oversees the in-house Office of the General Counsel. Reporting directly to the president, the general counsel is a member of the president's cabinet as an officer of the corporation. The general counsel also plays a central role in policy formulation and the stewardship of the University through service on University-wide and Trustee committees and boards. The general counsel provides overall strategic and ethical leadership and direction for all legal matters involving the University, including student, faculty, and staff affairs; regulatory and compliance issues (in collaboration with the chief compliance officer); and research and financial concerns. The general counsel manages the work of a team of six high-performing attorneys and their practice areas. The general counsel also selects, retains, and supervises the work of outside counsel on a case-by-case basis. The general counsel must: -Support the University's functions and business through the delivery of legal support and guidance. -Develop and implement an ethical vision and strategic plan for the University's legal services. -Function as an integral partner within the president's senior leadership team. -Ensure that the University operates within the appropriate legal governance framework. -Identify and manage legal risk consistent with University priorities defined by the president and his team, and establish a clearly understood framework for legal policies within the Office of the General Counsel. -Lead the internal legal team and set objectives. -Be accountable for the management of relationships with external legal partners, and ensure that all such relationships are effective, cost-efficient, and conducive to constructive outcomes on behalf of the University's stakeholders. -Establish and manage a budget for the provision of the University's legal services by both inside and outside counsel, ensuring compliance with the budget, as well as establish levels of accountability and evaluate results.

Essential Qualifications: Candidates should have a strong record of accomplishment as a practicing attorney, proven leadership in legal affairs, and the demonstrated ability to work in a complex organization. Preference will be given to candidates who possess the following: -The stature, maturity, competence and confidence to operate with credibility at the executive and trustee level, as well as a professional history of maintaining objectivity while driving appropriate outcomes, managing multiple stakeholder agendas, and promoting high client service standards. -Intellectual and conceptual flexibility and creativity, with the ability to analyze, interpret, present, and write about complex ideas and concepts in a clear, concise fashion. -Adeptness at working in a highly nuanced environment with multiple constituencies. -The ability to prioritize rapidly and execute with urgency while exhibiting superb judgment, compassion, wisdom and a sense of humor. -Demonstrated managerial and leadership acumen, founded upon a deep respect for persons at all ranks of the organization. -The understanding and appreciation that the University's missions of education and research, and the professionals who execute on those missions, will be the general counsel's primary focus and clients. The candidate must be a licensed attorney in good standing, and must either be licensed in, or be willing and able to become licensed in, the state of New Jersey. -Must have outstanding judgment, high ethical standards, and the capacity to deal effectively with a widely varied array of legal issues. -Must have a collegial approach to problem-solving and a willingness to engage in clear and transparent dialogue about both legal and non-legal issues. -Must have an appreciation for the values of higher education and the culture of a great liberal arts university. -Must embrace and appreciate the value of diversity and inclusion. -Must be able to perform effectively, calmly and collegially under pressure. -Must have an exceptional ability to communicate and calibrate risk with clarity and directness. Princeton University has engaged Major, Lindsey & Africa (MLA) to conduct this search on an exclusive basis. Interested candidates should submit their resume to pwilliams@mlaglobal.com, ludelsman@mlaglobal.com.

Preferred Qualifications: -Demonstrated integrity and wisdom with the ability to inspire confidence and trust. -Intellectual zest and curiosity. -A collegial and collaborative mindset, as well as patience with process. -Creative problem-solving capabilities and a dedication to finding solutions consistent with institutional mission. -The ability to serve as a strategic thought partner to guide clients to successful outcomes. -An ability to communicate effectively by speaking and writing in plain English.

Education Required: Advanced Degree

Application Deadline: Open Until Filled or See Position Summary.