UMCarey receives gift for female leadership program

A female leadership program at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law received a belated holiday gift this week.

DollarThe Marjorie Cook Foundation gave the Women, Leadership & Equality Program a $100,000 gift, the law school announced Tuesday.

The money will allow the program, which focuses on gender issues in the legal profession, to expand its curriculum and maintain the positions of the program’s fellows at nonprofits like House of Ruth and the Maryland and National Women’s Law Centers.

“Because of the Foundation’s generosity we have had the ability for the last decade to educate more than 90 students selected as Rose Zetzer Fellows in the theory and practice of gender equality for women in our profession,” program founder and professor Paula Monopoli said in a statement.

The program was initially founded with the help of a $250,000 gift from the Marjorie Cook Foundation.


In-House Interrogatory

Asked: Our weekly question to the In-House community

Companies are increasingly giving general counsels a larger role (and a larger chunk of money) as they are forced to beef up their legal teams to protect themselves from regulatory and legal risks, The Wall Street Journal reports.

This means GCs take on more of a management role at companies and get paid more. In fact, at some companies, in-house counsel are among the top five paid executives.

According to a report to be released Monday by compensation researcher Equilar Inc., the median pay for general counsel who report directly to chief executives was $1.55 million—more than twice that of those further down the corporate hierarchy, whose median pay was $760,000,” the Journal reported.

General counsels are getting paid more as they work with executives on business goals and map out possible risks for their company.

So, here’s our question for you:

Have general counsels taken on more of an executive position at your company? If so, has their pay increased?

Leave a comment below or email me.

Need to Know:

  • The American Red Cross appointed a new general counsel.
  • Marathon Oil named a executive vice president, general counsel and secretary.
  • Entecom’s general counsel retired.
  • What in-house counsel wants and doesn’t want from outside counsel.
  • The National Labor Relations Board’s Division of Judges disposed of 645 cases in FY 2012, issuing 207 decisions and settling 438 cases.
  • Attorneys for a few Penn State administrators say the university’s former GC violated attorney-client privilege by helping prosecutors build a case against the school’s former VP and athletic director.
  • In-house attorneys say a move in-house is no longer a career downshift.
  • J.P. Morgan revamps its legal team.

Top 5 law stories of 2010

In a year’s worth of legal news, the most-read story online was only published on our website last week. Other stories that led in 2010 were about a “wrongful birth” lawsuit, whether or not alcohol can create adequate suspicion and a settlement from Jos. A. Bank.

1. Settlement terms revealed in wrongful arrest case – Brendan Kearney

On the morning of Nov. 29, 2007, Yakov Shapiro was preparing for a day of family and music — his two great loves — when there was a knock at the door of his Germantown home.

When he opened it, three Montgomery County police officers asked the 60-year-old immigrant his name and then announced, to his shock, that he was under arrest.

On the way to jail, he learned the charges: child sexual abuse.

2. Parents file $20M lawsuit for wrongful birth – Danny Jacobs

A Baltimore couple filed a wrongful birth lawsuit Monday after a sonogram showing fetus abnormalities was sent to a doctor with the same name as the treating obstetrician.

Jessica Young only learned of her baby’s problems days before Antonio Jesse McLeod was delivered prematurely last July with a hole in his diaphragm, among other complications. A lawyer for Young and Antoine McLeod, the baby’s father, estimated Antonio’s “lifetime of care” could cost the couple more than $20 million.

3. Smell of alcohol alone created adequate suspicion – Steve Lash

A “moderate” aroma of alcohol emanating from a driver provided a sufficient basis for a police officer to conduct sobriety tests, Maryland’s top court held unanimously, overturning a judge’s conclusion that the smell alone did not arouse reasonable suspicion.

The Court of Appeals said Baltimore County Circuit Judge Timothy J. Martin erroneously engaged in a constitutional analysis of whether the officer had “reasonable articulable suspicion” that motorist Adam Leigh Shea had too much to drink in ordering field-sobriety and breathalyzer tests, which found he was over the legal limit.

4. Debt collector to pay $330K settlement – Caryn Tamber and Brendan Kearney

In a victory for consumer protection advocates, a major Maryland debt collector has agreed to drop 10,000 lawsuits against people who, in turn, alleged they were pursued illegally by the then-unlicensed company.

Midland Funding LLC will also pay the class $200,000 and its lawyers $130,000.

5. Jos. A. Bank to pay $4M to end share-price litigation – by Brendan Kearney

Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc. has agreed to pay $4 million to settle securities litigation over certain public statements about its sales and inventory made in late 2005 and early 2006.

The Hampstead-based menswear chain reached an agreement in principle in late October to settle the 3-year-old putative class action with the plaintiffs, led by the Massachusetts Labor Annuity Fund, but only filed the particulars in a stipulation on Friday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.