To The Readers of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:
The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) is the world's largest organization serving the needs of in-house counsel around the globe. With more than 25,000 members employed by over 10,000 organizations in more than 70 countries, ACC connects its members to each other, and to the people and resources necessary for their personal and professional growth.
As the founding president of the ACC Quebec chapter, I am proud to say that we are now embarking on our third year of existence as a formal chapter of the ACC. Along with a small group of dedicated in-house counsel, the ACC Quebec chapter was officially inaugurated in November 2008. The Quebec chapter is only the second ACC chapter to have been established in Canada, after our friends from Ontario led the way in 2007.
The ACC Quebec chapter serves the needs of more than 130 in-house counsel who represent close to 100 corporations in the cities of Montreal, Quebec and throughout the province by offering continuing legal education activities, networking and knowledge sharing amongst the in-house profession.
In its first year as an ACC chapter (2008-2009), the Quebec chapter successfully organized a number of sessions for the in-house community on a variety of topics such as Proactively Managing Your Career for Success and Professional Accomplishment; Commercial Arbitration - What Every Corporate Counsel Should Know in 90 minutes or Less; Negotiating and Drafting Commercial Contracts: From Theory to Reality; Cross-border Transactions Canada and the U.S.; and Averting Corporate Disaster - Ethical Decision Making for Employees. These events were well attended by the in-house counsel and offered a unique opportunity to discuss issues faced by many corporate legal departments.
During its second year, the ACC Quebec chapter organized numerous events; amongst the most popular were the CLE sessions entitled Interpretation of Financial Statements: What Every In-house Counsel Needs to Know; Canadian Competition Law: What Do the Recent Changes Mean for Your Business; Doing Business in India: Practical Tips and Accessing the U.S. Capital/Debt Markets: Current Trends and Opportunities. The Quebec Chapter also organized a most unique event on Crisis Management, where in-house counsel, given less than 1 hour of preparation time, were asked to step into the shoes of a corporate spokesperson, and respond to media questions on a hypothetical crisis situation,before the rolling cameras. This event was a great success and offered very practical and hands-on training. The ACC Quebec chapter also organized purely networking events such as the ART CRAWL, where our members were invited to visit the private art collections of select law firms.
For 2010-2011, our activities will include CLE sessions on Ethical Issues for In-House Counsel; Recent Developments in International Commercial Law; and Doing Business in the USA: From a Canadian Perspective, as well as many other topics. As we embark on our third programming year, we will continue to offer high-quality CLE sessions and networking opportunities where the in-house community can come together to share knowledge and experience amongst peers.