Program Agenda
Panelist Biographies


SESSION A: The Fed, Capital Markets and M&A Turbulence: Crash or Soft Landing

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Carl Comstock, Vice President – Special Situations, Intrepid Investment Bankers LLC
Erin Bryan
 and Eric Lopez Schnabel, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

This summer, the Federal Reserve approved an interest-rate hike that continued a trend leading to the highest benchmark borrowing costs in decades. Our panelists bring perspectives from investment banking, commercial banking, and the law to discuss how and to what extent the continuing rise in interest rates impacts the capital markets and M&A transactions, as well as banking and lending in general. The discussion will include a focus on the impact on deals involving distressed entities. Will this confluence of market forces result in a mid-air crash or a soft landing? Our panelists will share insights on where this historic economic moment is leading.

SESSION B: The Art and Science of Generative AI: An Ethical Journey for In-House Counsel

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Gulzar Babaeva, Vice President, Deputy General Counsel, Shipt, Inc.
Tom Corbett, Head of Product & Privacy Counsel, Eightfold AI
Gina Cornelio, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Welcome to the dynamic world of Generative Artificial Intelligence (Generative AI), where creativity meets cutting-edge technology. As in-house counsel, you may not have wanted to be here, but here you are! We invite you to discuss Generative AI’s ethical dimensions, generally, and under the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct. We’ll explore attorney competency, confidentiality, work product, attorney-client privilege, and unauthorized practice of law. You’ll leave better understanding which ethical aspects to consider, as the workflows of your legal teams and business units increasingly use Generative AI. Someone in your organization is probably already using Generative AI today. If so — or if you’re drafting a policy regarding Generative AI — this is a must-attend session.

SESSION A: Managing Risk in International Trade and Investment

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Valentin Povarchuk, Senior Corporate Counsel – Trade Compliance & Regulatory Affairs, Seagate Technology LLC
Ranj Sangra
, Associate General Counsel, Ballard Power Systems Inc.
Christopher Bercaw
Karen Yiqin Fan, and David Townsend, Dorsey & Whitney LLP 

The laws, regulations and practices affecting international trade and investment shift quickly in response to a variety of volatile geopolitical forces. Catch up with the latest in national security barriers to trade and investment with our panel of experts. Among the topics that will be addressed are the impact of U.S.-China tensions, factors in diversifying supply chains and revenue streams from non-U.S. sources, and spotting and avoiding international legal pitfalls. The takeaways will include practical tips for navigating the challenging terrain of today’s global economy.

SESSION B: Helping Your Board to Navigate the Next Black Swan Event: Mission Impossible?

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Peter Carter, Executive Vice President - External Affairs, Delta Air Lines, Inc.
James Chosy, Senior Executive Vice President and General Counsel, U.S. Bancorp
Amy Schneider, Vice President, Corporate Secretary and Securities, Xcel Energy Inc.
Robert Rosenbaum and Cam Hoang, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Boards are facing more and more challenges as culture wars, technology developments and a rapidly changing legal and regulatory environment continue apace. One wrong step with handling of ESG matters, responding to cyber events or oversight of the use of AI can lead to significant problems for the company. A panel of experienced boardroom counselors explore these and other topics and share the advice they provide behind closed doors.

SESSION A: The Government Expects Me to Do What?! Managing Business Data in the Era of Messaging Apps,
Remote Work, and BYOD

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Nancy Hendrickson, Vice President and Associate General Counsel, D.A. Davidson Companies
Elizabeth Moellering
, Senior Associate General Counsel, Optum
Nicole Engisch and Caroline Sweeney, Dorsey & Whitney LLP 

You know your employees and executives are conducting business over text, messaging apps, and personal cell phones. You may have seen firsthand some of the challenges this creates in litigation and internal investigations, and in other areas of managing legal risk to your business. But what happens when DOJ or SEC opens an investigation into your company’s operations and demands all communications to or from employees about a particular issue, and expects you to have access to, and control of, all relevant communications? This panel will cover the latest DOJ and SEC policies and recent enforcement actions regarding preservation and collection of business information. We will also share best practices and proposed solutions to balance the competing goals of employee privacy and data minimization with ensuring business data is appropriately available for the company’s use, for litigation, and for government regulators.

SESSION B: Empowerment Through Inclusion: Elevate Your Role as In-House Counsel

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Christine Boucher, Deputy General Counsel & Chief Compliance Officer, Delta Air Lines, Inc.
Ted Cadwell
, Principal U.S. Counsel, Nature Energy US LLC
Quang Trang
, Associate General Counsel, Allina Health System
Jillian Kornblatt
, Dorsey & Whitney LLP 

Disability inclusion in legal workplaces is hampered by silence, stigma, and misunderstanding. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calculates that more than one-fourth of all U.S. adults have a disability, but 70% of those disabilities are not apparent (and fewer than 5% of employees publicly identify as having a disability). The good news is that the 2023 Disability Equality Index reveals a marked increase in voluntary self-identification campaigns among corporations. With increased self-identification and self-advocacy comes the need for law firms, corporate legal departments, and businesses to step-up resources, education, support and allyship. In house counsel have the influence to drive positive change and help eliminate biases in their own legal practice and departments, ranging from in-house actions to representation in courtrooms and boardrooms. Our panel will outline proactive strategies to foster an inclusive environment that goes beyond mere compliance. You’ll discover how disability inclusion provides a strategic advantage that can elevate your legal department’s or organization’s reputation, broaden perspectives, and fuel innovation. Join us for an enriching hour that will leave you empowered to foster inclusion and help champion a more equitable legal landscape.

Keynote Address

Paula Boggs, Founder, Boggs Media, LLC

The 34th CCS marks the first time that a professional musician – Paula Boggs – is featured as keynote speaker. This leader of the “Seattle-brewed Soulgrass” Paula Boggs Band applies an impressive mix of left-brain/right-brain balance to her outlook on leadership. While she has focused on music, public speaking, and creative business activities for more than a decade, Paula served as Executive Vice President, General Counsel, and Secretary at Starbucks Corporation from 2002 to 2012. NASDAQ named Paula its top general counsel in 2009. In addition to time at Dell Computers and as a law firm partner, Paula had a 14-year career in public service, including as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and in various capacities as an attorney for the U.S. Army, the Department of Defense, and the White House Office of Legal Counsel. She served eight years as a Regular Officer in the United States Army, earned Army Airborne wings, and received a Congressional appointment to the US Naval Academy – among America’s first women to do so. In 2013, President Obama appointed her to the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. Paula is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley School of Law.

Paula will share her perspectives on leading and developing successful teams, including the ways in which being a musician makes her a better businesswoman (and how being a businesswoman makes her a better musician), the role of diversity and inclusion in building successful teams, and the value of taking calculated risks in a position of leadership.