Thank you for visiting Dorsey’s Minneapolis Corporate Counsel Symposium web page. We have posted information from the event held on November 5, 2009 including copies of presentation materials and related resources.

2009 Symposium Speaker Biographies

Everyday Ethics for In-house Counsel

Speakers:  Joseph H. Otterstetter, Assistant General Counsel, 3M Company; Karen E. Wilson Thissen, Senior Vice President and Assistant General Counsel, Ameriprise Financial, Inc.; Kenneth L. Jorgensen and Lisa M. Marchese, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Description: In-house counsel face a variety of complex ethical scenarios on a daily basis. Join a lively and highly practical exploration of some of the issues that arise most commonly. Audience members, through interactive technology, will have the opportunity to vote for the correct solutions to a series of problems posed by Dorsey Ethics Partner Ken Jorgensen and an all-star panel.


M&A 2009: The Patient Lives!

Speakers: Todd G. Hartman, Vice President, Associate General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer, Best Buy Co., Inc.; Kashif Rashid, Associate General Counsel, St. Jude Medical, Inc.; Mark J. Kalla, Matthew J. Knopf and John Marsalek, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Description: Despite a sobering deal climate in 2009, M&A transactions are still happening. Distress M&A dominated the first quarter, but the second quarter saw corporate buyers cautiously re-entering the field and completing strategic acquisitions. Private equity buyers are becoming more active as well. Experienced M&A practitioners will explore the changing landscape in 2009 and offer perspectives on 2010.

Forget Chicken Little – The Sky is Falling: Current Enterprise Risk Management Strategies for Product Recalls and Corporate Compliance Matters

Speakers: Peter S. Janzen, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Assistant Secretary, Land O’Lakes, Inc.; Carol A. Peterson, Assistant General Counsel, 3M Company; Mark R. Kaster, Robert F. Kleiber, Sara J. Peterson and Peter W. Sipkins, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Description: Does your company need an Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) plan to evaluate, manage and respond effectively to product recall risk and corporate compliance demands? What do ERM plans look like? How do companies manage risk from an integrated perspective? Who should be on the ERM team? How do you coordinate governance, risk and compliance activities with an ERM program? What is the general counsel's role in promoting integration between the legal and corporate teams? Can ERM improve efficiencies and add value? What issues and processes are involved in protecting brand and reputation? How should risk communications be managed? The panel will highlight lessons learned in evaluating and responding to corporate risks. 

Resources: (Download full set of session materials)

Insolvency and Restructuring 2009: Where's the Turn-Around?

Speakers: Jerry Lombardo, Global Funding & Liquidity Executive, GMAC Financial Services; Richard J. Mikos, Executive Vice President, U.S. Bank National Association; Annette W. Jarvis, Thomas O. Kelly, III and Eric Lopez Schnabel, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Description: How is the Credit Crisis of 2007-2009 transforming the world of business insolvencies and restructurings? What can we expect as the economic downturn works its way through the broader economy? What risks and opportunities do the crisis and government response present? An experienced panel discusses current hot issues in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, speculates about what the future holds (including possible fallout from the GM and Chrysler bankruptcies) and examines the ongoing efforts of the federal government to restructure the financial sector and limit bank failures.


Litigating the Big Case: How to Win Without Bling

Speakers: Michael C. Connelly, Vice President and General Counsel, Xcel Energy Inc.; Peter H. Walsh, Senior Deputy General Counsel and Chief Litigation Officer, UnitedHealth Group Incorporated; Peter W. Carter, Jocelyn Knoll and Thomas P. Swigert, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

The American judicial system offers sophisticated plaintiffs’ attorneys nearly irresistible incentives to file mass tort litigation, class action or derivative lawsuits seeking millions or even billions in damages. What are the most efficient and effective ways of defending such lawsuits? Are there steps that can be taken before the lawsuit is filed? What are some of the alternative fee arrangements that both manage costs and help ensure success? Experienced trial lawyers and inside counsel discuss best practices for managing complex litigation to ensure success.


The Coming Storm: Sweeping Changes Ahead in Employment Law

Speakers: Christine A. Kucera-Kalla, Vice President and Associate Group General Counsel, The Travelers Companies, Inc.; Timothy B. Arends and Douglas R. Christensen, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

With Barack Obama in the White House and Democratic majorities in Congress, labor is flexing its political clout in a way it has not in many years. This, combined with a resurgent civil rights movement and the most significant economic meltdown in 75 years, is contributing to a perfect storm that may bring sweeping changes to labor, employment and employee benefits laws. Labor and employment veterans examine the legislative agenda that President Obama and the Democratic majorities promised to pursue along with potential non-legislative changes that every employer should understand.


Privacy Law 2009: A Year of Change

Speakers: Ann E. Tobin, Senior Privacy Counsel, UnitedHealth Group Incorporated; Ross C. D’Emanuele, Barry D. Glazer, Melissa J. Krasnow and William R. Stoeri, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Description: It’s no secret: privacy law continued to develop at a dizzying pace in 2009. Experienced privacy law practitioners provide an overview of the various state and federal laws with which most companies must comply and highlight recent developments, including the HITECH Act in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the Massachusetts privacy regulation. The panel will also address the European Union Data Privacy Directive and discuss practical approaches to complying with state, federal and foreign privacy laws.

Resources: (Download full set of session materials)


Lawyers, Guns and Money: Current Status of Global and Domestic Corporate Fraud Investigations

Speakers: Joan D. Humes, General Counsel of the Public and Senior Markets Group, UnitedHealth Group Incorporated; Nicholas Burkill, Zachary W. Carter, Roger J. Magnuson and William Michael, Jr., Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Regulators and law enforcement have been reinvigorated regarding corporate investigations. DOJ has begun using raids and search warrants on corporate offices instead of traditional subpoenas. Antitrust and FCPA matters are becoming more prevalent. The SEC has simplified subpoena issuance and is revising its criteria for corporate cooperation. Auditors are more forcefully requiring disclosure of internal investigative matters. Regulators and prosecutors abroad are now more active, and the UK government has announced that it will enact new legislation by early 2010 to make bribery prosecutions of corporations and individuals easier. In the words of the ancient curse, corporations are living “in interesting times.” Veterans of government investigations and enforcement actions share lessons learned, advice and tips on how to live instead “in boring times.”

Resources: (Download full set of session materials)

Shareholder Access: The View from the Top

Speakers: Richard H. Anderson, Chief Executive Officer, Delta Air Lines, Inc.; Richard K. Davis, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, U.S. Bancorp; Richard B. Hirst, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Delta Air Lines, Inc.; Lee R. Mitau, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, U.S. Bancorp; Bryn R. Vaaler, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Description: The SEC's shareholder access initiative, dissident proxy reimbursement and the end of broker discretionary voting for directors are laying the groundwork for dramatic changes in the way public company directors are elected. Will the changes be good or bad for corporate governance? The CEOs and general counsels of two of the most prominent public companies in the United States share their views about effective boards, good governance and the potentially far-reaching effects of the changes transforming corporate board elections.

Resources: (Download full set of session materials)