This week’s featured question: What is your proudest professional achievement and why?

For this week’s question of the week, we asked Chambers ranked lawyers and leading in-house counsel across the globe to share their experiences.

Regina Bynote Jones
General Counsel – Research, Engineering, Manufacturing & Sustaining
Schlumberger, Paris, France

“My proudest professional achievement was when I was named as the Chairman’s Chief of Staff during my career with Dynegy.  In this role, I participated with the Chairman in all Board Meetings, worked with him on the Board Executive Committee, participated in all leadership strategy planning and executive management meetings. During this 2 years,  I developed lifelong relationships and learned more than I have in any other role in my career. The most important lesson is learning the value of good leadership.”

Margarita Garate
Of Counsel
Von Wobeser Y Sierra, Mexico City

“In 2007, the intellectual property department at Von Wobeser y Sierra, S.C. was going through a lot of changes and, consequently, taking over responsibility for such team has been my hardest professional challenge. As head of the department I needed to envision and implement a satisfactory internal organization which involved hiring new personnel while at the same time continuing to provide efficient services to our clients, all of which required a lot of work and effort. Fortunately, after some months we reached a notable internal balance obtaining important successful results in various IP litigation cases for our clients.”

Marcia Shekerdemian
11 Stone Buildings, London, United Kingdom

“Getting to grips with Bahrain insolvency law and Cayman company law and deploying both whilst representing the joint UK and Cayman liquidators of the Cayman Subsidiaries of a Bahrain Bank in the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands. My opponents were Cayman lawyers who were obviously more au fait with the law, the judges and the forum. Despite being the outsider arguing foreign law, I won the case. I had an even greater sense of achievement because I had not taken in a leader. My instructing solicitors had been urged by their Cayman counterpart to instruct a QC, who would have the ear of the Court. They did not do so as they had confidence in me and it was hugely rewarding not to have let them down.”

Karyn S.W. Polak
Chief Counsel, Asset Management Group
PNC Financial Services Group, New York

“I am most proud of having closed the creation of the Morgan Stanley Smith Barney joint venture in an incredibly compressed five-month timeframe notwithstanding the thousands of steps that had to be taken to make it happen, the dozens of principal contracts negotiated and signed, the numerous regulators across the globe consulted and reassured, and the hundreds of people within Citigroup and Morgan Stanley involved in the effort.  It was an enormous undertaking with countless threads to be followed and interdependencies to address.  My role required that I manage both the transactional lawyers and business people who were working to close the transaction and the line of business lawyers and functionals who needed to know their interests were taken into account both in the terms of the deal itself and for the long haul.  And none of those people reported to me.”

Hristina Dimitrova
Legal Counsel
ECE Projektmanagement, Bulgaria

“Frankly as a self-starter, I am proud of my professional development so far. Through the years I managed to prove myself and be recognized as a valuable team player. I am a legal counsel in a team that works internationally with great success, despite the intercultural differences. I am pleased to have the opportunity to become more and more acquainted with all the formalities and aspects in execution of international business transactions and the applicability of the jurisdictions of the respective countries.”

Claudia Ricchetti

Senior Vice President, Legal & European Regulatory Affairs Director,
Lottomatica Group, Italy

Having obtained the role and responsibility of the Legal Department at the age of 31 of a such a big media group in Italy. I normally met at that time with people covering the same role but much older than me. In addition, the importance of the mission I was given at that time included the implementation of the new media law in Italy and the creation of the first network among some football teams for selling TV rights. It seems pre-history but at that time pay-for-view TV in Italy was not undeveloped and also the football TV rights were only given to the State TV Company. In addition to this, I am very proud that I am appreciated abroad as one of experts of the gaming industry in terms of regulation and I have been invited as a speaker at a number of seminars and universities.”

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