Vice President, Legal Affairs

May 25, 2023
Jun 22, 2023
Trademark Agent
Contract Type

Monday, May 22, 2023

At SHRM, we are committed to making work, workers and workplaces better through insights–driven policy solutions, learning and development, thought leadership and research. We are shaping the ways employers and employees thrive together. SHRM is empowering our more than 300,000+ members, including HR professionals, business executives, and people managers, to lead as strategic business partners and effective stewards of workplace culture, business productivity, and employee engagement.

Summary This role is a dotted line report to the CEO for all legal affairs and a solid line report to the CFO for risk management and the Chief of Staff for all other duties. Day–to–day management oversight will be provided by the Chief of Staff. As head of the Legal Department, the Vice President provides effective advice on a broad range of legal and strategic issues critical to the organization's goals. This position also assures compliance by SHRM and its subsidiaries with applicable laws, regulations, and organizational bylaws; protects the organizations' intellectual property; reviews and negotiates contracts to ensure appropriate rights and protections for SHRM and its subsidiaries; and serves on the Operations Team to identify legal issues that may arise and provide counsel on the same. This role supports the Executive Office, and the organization in general in achieving their strategic objectives. The Vice President also service as the liaison between the organization and its dedicated outside legal services provider. Responsibilities:
  • Manage the relationship with the organization's dedicated outside counsel and other counsel, as necessary, including negotiation of annual fees, scope of services and non–contracted engagement.
  • Act as the organization's Ethics and Risk Management officer with ultimate responsibility for ensuring that SHRM and its subsidiaries conduct their business in compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
  • Provide legal advice and services on a broad range of issues, including but not limited to association law, intellectual property, employment law/affirmative action, tax, pension/ERISA, insurance, ethics/member discipline, defamation/publishing/disclaimers, internet/website/e–mail, antitrust as applied to associations, lobbying compliance, data privacy, export compliance/trade sanctions, governance, chapter relations, and record retention.
  • Manage litigation with assistance from outside counsel.
  • Provide counsel on corporate and strategic initiatives, complex business transactions and potential partnerships.
  • Provide counsel on tax, licensing, and corporate structure for operations in foreign countries.
  • Responsible for assessing, drafting, and negotiating a variety of agreements, incorporating appropriate protections for SHRM, avoiding unnecessary obligations and minimizing legal and business risks. Oversee contract control process.
  • As Assistant Board Secretary, develop and oversee corporate compliance and risk management programs (e.g., legal ethics and compliance program, trade sanctions compliance, affirmative action/federal contractor compliance, etc.).
  • Provide administrative support and counsel to the SHRM Corporate Secretary in preparation of board materials, board policies and procedures and board elections.
  • Serve as a subject matter expert to internal and external stakeholders in an efficient, professional, and timely manner.
  • Serve on the Operations Team.
  • Attend conferences and board meetings, as needed.
  • Other duties as assigned.
Education & Experience Requirements


  • Doctorate/JD



  • J.D. from an accredited law school. A minimum of five (5) years of experience practicing law in a law firm and/or a corporation, association/professional society or the government is required.


  • Must be a member in good standing of a bar in one of the 50 states or the District of Columbia. Membership in good standing of the Virginia bar (or eligibility to become a member of the Virginia bar within one year of hire).
  • Experience in contract law/negotiation, intellectual property, or antitrust law is preferred.
  • Prior support of, or experience as board secretary.
  • N/A
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
  • Ability to handle a broad range of legal matters.
  • Must exercise excellent judgment, common sense, and attention to detail; show initiative; and handle sensitive and confidential data in a trustworthy manner.
  • Ability to identify and mitigate material legal risks and to avoid overreacting to non–material legal risks. Ability to understand and measure business risks versus legal risks.
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to work independently.
  • Discretion, maturity, and composure especially under pressure.
  • Ability to establish priorities and handle numerous assignments at once.
  • High standards and strong sense of responsibility and honesty.
  • Able to foster a cooperative work environment.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills; ability to instill confidence in those with whom you work, including the Senior Management Team.
  • Ability to work with flexibility, efficiency, enthusiasm, and diplomacy both individually and as part of a team effort.
Additional Notes

Physical Requirements

  • Must be able to perform essential duties satisfactorily with reasonable accommodations.
  • Work is generally done sitting, talking, hearing, and typing. Visual acuity to use a keyboard, prepare and analyze data and figures; transcribing, viewing a computer terminal; extensive reading.

Work environment

  • Work is regularly performed in a professional office environment and routinely uses standard office equipment.
Our employment practices are in accordance with the laws that prohibit discrimination against qualified individuals on the basis of race, religion, color, gender, age, national origin, physical or mental disability, genetic information, veteran's status, marital status, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, or any other status protected by applicable law.

SHRM is an equal opportunity employer (Minority/Female/Disabled/Veteran).

We do not sponsor applicants for work visas.

  • Job Family Legal – Attorneys
  • Job Function Business Development & Support Functions