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General Counsel

Highlights for Children, a family media brand- a privately held, mid-cap company, that has been nurturing children with excellent, wholesome, and innovative products and services for more than 70 years, reaches millions of children every month throughout the world. Our wide variety of “Fun with a Purpose” magazines, books, apps, videos and licensed products are dedicated to helping children become their best selves—creative, curious, caring, and confident.  In addition to the well-known Highlights Consumer Business, the Highlights for Children organization includes Zaner-Bloser (educational curricula and digital resources provider in language arts/literacy), Staff Development for Educators (America's leading provider of professional development for Pre-K through Grade 12 educators), and Stenhouse Publishers (professional development books and videos by teachers for teachers).  Highlights is a complex, privately held mid-cap company with a variety of business models and sales channels.

 

General Counsel

The General Counsel for Highlights for Children has the opportunity to serve as legal strategist for one of the most beloved children’s brands in the USA, and increasingly, the world. The General Counsel will be responsible for serving as a key legal advisor and facilitator for all major business transactions, acquisitions, corporate governance and regulatory compliance and filings.  This senior business leader will create practical and effective solutions to legal issues, some with no established precedent; develop creative solutions to unique legal problems; handle contract disputes; provide advice regarding or handle complex contract negotiations; and structure and manage the company’s legal functions.  The General Counsel will be responsible for managing a growing portfolio of more than 500 trademarks in 61 countries.  This role reports to the CEO and partners closely with Human Resources, the senior leadership team, and outside counsel.

Core Responsibilities:

  • Provide legal advice and services by combining knowledge and experience in contractual issues with sound business reasoning and understanding of corporate objectives.
  • Supervise and actively direct outside counsel.
  • Use business and legal judgment to explain and help balance an appropriate level of risk against the business objectives.  Operate within the framework of allowable corporate behavior and legal/regulatory compliance.
  • Draft/review contracts (licensing of our trademarks, licensing for our content, technology agreements, vendor agreements).
  • Manage the compliance function to ensure compliance with all applicable state and federal laws.
  • Develop and implement compliance goals and objectives to maintain compliance with policy and regulations and with the goal of promoting a positive consumer experience; Provide independent direction and leadership to ensure compliance programs and policies perform as required.

Qualifications:

  • Juris Doctor Degree and licensed to practice law and in good standing in at least one state/jurisdiction in the United States, preferably Ohio.
  • 10+ years’ experience working for a law firm and in-house corporation encompassing broad experience and responsibilities, experience with family businesses a plus.
  • Excellent interpersonal communications skills and ability to work in entrepreneurial environment.
  • Depth and breadth of experience working with business and contractual issues including acquisitions.
  • Intellectual Property experience preferred.
  • Able to provide outstanding advice and legal services across the organization in a fast-paced environment while working collaboratively with colleagues of all levels.
  • Ability to simplify and communicate legal concepts.
  • Patience, persistence, curiosity, integrity, and creative problem-solving abilities.

Highlights is a mission driven organization.  We help children become their best selves by publishing content and creating experiences that engage, delight, and foster joyful learning. Through the work we do and as an inclusive corporate community, we are dedicated to cultivating our best selves in our workplace.  We aim to hire talent that strives for excellence while doing the work they love, by enhancing the lives of kids and families.  We come together with a common purpose because, we believe children are the world's most important people.  

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