The 11th Annual In-House Counsel Conference took place Dec. 6 at
the Massachusetts Bar Association. This year's conference was
co-chaired by longtime MBA members James C. Donnelly Jr., Robert J.
Kerwin, Peter D. McDermott and David A. Parke. The half-day
conference featured a number of excellent panelists and comments
from Edward Seksay, general counsel of Rockland Trust Company and
U.S. District Court Judge Dennis F. Saylor IV.
Parke welcomed attendees to the conference and introduced Seksay
who discussed his career path that lead up to his current position
as general counsel of Rockland Trust. Since some in-house counsel
positions can be somewhat isolating, Seksay stressed the importance
of building a professional network. A vast professional network of
other in-house professionals can make a huge difference in the
quality of legal services, as well as an impact on effective
decision-making within the in-house law department.
Kerwin began the first substantive panel by discussing challenges
and strategies that help in-house counsel comply with the evolving
data privacy laws.
David Parke then welcomed Doug Denny-Brown, Robert Cicero and
Stephanie Lambert to the dais to discuss best practices in managing
business contracts, including contract terms that are commonly
encountered, and how to manage risks presented by company contracts
and contract management systems.
The morning concluded with U.S. District Dennis F. Saylor
providing the attendees with a judge's perspective on issues that
are particular to in-house counsel, specifically the evolving
standards for discovery of electronically stored information.
After a brief break, the audience was treated to the annual
"lightning round." Banner & Witcoff partner Ernest V. Linek
covered remedies and awards in trademark litigation and gave an
in-depth, 15-minute overview of everything one needs to know about
Donnelley concluded the programming by moderating an interactive
discussion on topics in employment law, including what to do if an
employee needs time off to care for a family member, how to deal
with requests to work from home and how to deal with a threat of
violence in the workplace.