To The Readers of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:
What is top of mind for corporate counsel these days? Well, there are a number of issues that preoccupy corporate counsel. First and foremost, how do your serve your enterprise to the best of your abilities with limited time and resources? This requires that you perform your daily duties efficiently and effectively. In doing so, you are balancing your day-to-day duties by prioritizing tasks that you must perform, and if you are lucky, what you can delegate to someone else in your department or to outside counsel. Along the way, corporate counsel are mindful of their compliance obligations, including ethical considerations and whistleblowing requirements. Just as important, corporate counsel must fit in career development and find enough time for family and friends.
What is clear is that the role of corporate counsel is becoming ever more complex and the expectations are becoming greater. Under these pressures, it is vital that they have a proper forum to share their experiences with their colleagues, learn best practices, and become better equipped and organized to tackle the challenges that lie ahead.
Over the past twelve months or so, the ACC Ontario Chapter has grown its membership by over 25 percent to 625 members. During that time, the Chapter has held close to 35 events, ranging from educational and professional development, to social networking opportunities, to pro bono training and learning techniques to leveraging the outside counsel relationship. Keeping in line with the long-standing philosophy of the ACC, the Chapter promoted a vision of public service through pro bono work by corporate counsel, as well as the promotion of diversity in the corporate counsel community. The Chapter also launched its Members in Transition program to assist members in getting back to corporate counsel jobs.
Why do corporate counsel members join the ACC in Ontario? The answer I hear most often is that the ACC offers tremendous value: that is, ACC resources actually help you save time, money, and effort, the ACC offers fantastic networking opportunities that help build bonds amongst corporate counsel, and the ACC looks after the interests of corporate counsel. So, while the role of corporate counsel becomes more complex and the expectations on corporate counsel become greater, the ACC Ontario is responding. The Chapter’s success is based, in large part, on its grass roots appeal, which has helped to create a vibrant Chapter with an engaged membership.
With the recent launch of a new chapter in British Columbia, this is a good time to reflect on the great progress made by the ACC in Ontario and across Canada. As a global organization with a solid Canadian foundation, there has never been a better time for corporate counsel in Ontario and across Canada to get involved with the ACC.