The Corporate Counsel Committee
The Corporate Counsel Committee provides a professional and congenial forum for in-house lawyers in the Asia-Pacific region to interact with one another, as well as with lawyers in private practice. Through this network, the committee aims to educate and inform in-house professionals based in the region, to identify best practices in operating and managing legal departments, and to collaborate with local corporate counsel and bar associations to ensure that the voice of corporate counsels is considered in relation to rulemaking and legislation of concern to in-house practitioners.
2007 Beijing Conference
The Corporate Counsel Committee presented its first session at the Beijing Conference in 2006, entitled “Best Practices in Managing a Legal Department.” The panel consisted of: Kelly Austin, General Electric; David Laurence Kreider, Vodafone New Zealand Ltd.; Grant G. Tao, Motorola; and Albert C. Wang, Dell (China) Company, Ltd. It was moderated by Mitsuru Claire Chino, Itochu Corporation.
Discussions included employee evaluation; building know-how; cultivating a good relationship with business departments; effective advice to management; and managing the relationship with and selection of outside counsel. The session was well attended (over 40 attendants) and the discussion interactive and lively.
2008 Los Angeles Conference
The Committee organized a forum, in collaboration with the American Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC), to address the topic, “Multi-Jurisdictional Practice.” Moderated by Susan Hackett of the ACC, the panel consisted of; Janine Dascenzo, General Electric Company; Edith Shih, Hutchison Whampoa Limited, Mitsuru Claire Chino, Itochu Corporation, and David Laurence Kreider, Vodafone New Zealand Ltd.
After defining “multi-jurisdictional practice”, and highlighting the ease and frequency with which lawyers serving multinational clients routinely risk running afoul of existing rules, the discussion introduced the recent amendment 5.5 to the ABA rules on attorney conduct and explored how the panelists supervise and manage projects in jurisdictions in which they are not licensed to practice. The session was convened in the main ballroom, immediately before the Annual General Meeting, and was attended by several hundred participants.
2009 Manila Conference
The Committee organized a joint session, together with the Dispute Resolution and Arbitration Committee, entitled “Electronic Discovery and Other Cutting Edge Issues in Asia-U.S. Cross Border Discovery.” The first part of the session was on the topic of “Reconciling the Clashing Discovery Systems” and was moderated by Gerald Sumida of Carlsmith Ball. Practitioners from Korea (Jin Yeong Chung of Kim & Chang), Taiwan (Edgar Y. Chen of Tsar & Tsai), France (Jeffrey Holt of Saipem SA) and the Philippines (Francis Jardeleza of San Miguel Corporation) explained the “discovery” systems in their respective jurisdictions and the issues they face when dealing with the extensive U.S. discovery system.
The second part was entitled “Electronic Discovery – The New Frontier” and was moderated by Mitsuru Claire Chino of Itochu Corporation. Two vendors in the business of data collection, Navigant Consulting (James Gordon) and First Advantage (Ashley Smith), provided to the audience the fascinating world of how data is collected and some of the real issues they have faced when collecting data in the Asian region. The discussion was then followed by a practitioner from Singapore (Jimmy Yim of Drew & Napier), who explained the new legal development in Singapore on electronic discovery. Both parts were extremely successful, both in terms of attendance and the lively discussion and questions and answers that followed.