Benchmark Women in Litigation Forum - New York - Agenda September 13, Convene 810 Seventh, New York






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8:30 Registration and continental breakfast

9:00 Opening remarks

9:10 Protecting your data, privacy and GDPR concerns
• How to manage a cyber intrusion
• The new NYDFS cyber security regulations
• GDPR in practice
• Privacy concerns in the news (e.g. Facebook problems)
Noga Rosenthal, chief privacy officer and general counsel, NCC Media (moderator)
Diana Balan, VP global privacy, JP Morgan
Kristin Meister, litigation counsel, Credit Agricole CIB
Rachel Glasser
, chief privacy officer, Wunderman

10:00 Handling government investigations and regulators
• Anti-corruption enforcement and regulatory changes
• What to do when they come for you: SEC & DOJ investigations and crisis management
• Keeping up on compliance changes
• Privilege changes during an investigation
• Internal corporate investigations and whistleblower protections
Margaret D’Amico, partner, Cravath Swaine Moore (moderator)
Patricia Canavan, executive director, litigation and investigations, UBS
Erika Engelson, Americas head of litigation, Deutsche Bank
Serina Vash, executive director, GRC and general counsel, RANE (Risk Assistance Network + Exchange)
Jessica Ortiz, partner, MoloLamken

10:50 Coffee and networking

11:10 The latest updates on labor and employment litigation
• Update on pay equity issues: age, sex, disabilities, etc
• NDAs
• Sexual harassment policies
• Reassessing drug testing policies to keep up with the new laws
• Mitigating risk during an HR crisis
Elise Bloom, partner, Proskauer Rose (moderator)
Anastasia Danias, SVP & chief litigation officer, NFL
Yvette Politis, associate general counsel, RELX Group / Reed Elsevier
Sonya Johnson, senior counsel employment and labor law, National Grid
Michelle Annese, senior associate, Proskauer

12:00 Smashing the glass ceiling
Hear from leading women lawyers about what they feel is necessary for advancing your career in a male-dominated environment, including specific examples many women face being a litigation professional.
• Qualities of great women litigators: oral arguments, presentation skills, strategic acumen, prepping of witnesses
• Women litigators in the courtroom – diversity being required by judges and corporations
• Dealing with unconscious bias in the workplace
• Career paths – “stay or go”, lateral moves, alternative paths
• Self-advocacy on career choices – negotiating best offer and comp package
• How can women help each other to speed up the advance on equality?
Robin Cohen, principal, McKool Smith (moderator)
Rachael Akohonae, head employment counsel, BNP Paribas
Sara Carlesimo, vice president legal, Barclays Bank
Laura Alemzadeh, general counsel, Maesa Group

12:50 Lunch and networking

1:30 Creating a great legal workplace
• Trusted advisor role, not just legal knowledge, is what counts
• Building relationships internally and externally through networking
• GC role in building and sustaining corporate code of conduct and corporate culture
• Taking on the “right” tasks to lead you to future jobs and assigning staff to ‘”stretch” assignments
• Enabling people through mentoring, sponsorship and coaching
Madhu Southworth, SVP, legal & business affairs, AMC Entertainment And Sundance TV, AMC Networks (moderator)
Allison Cambria, VP & senior counsel, litigation & regulatory enforcement, Deutsche Bank AG New York
Yen Chu, SVP, General Counsel, Equinox
Jennifer Freel, counsel, Vinson & Elkins
Grace Fu,
EVP human resources, general counsel & secretary, Barneys New York

2:20 Managing complex litigation
• Top five hotbed litigation areas
• The rise in class actions lawsuits
• Dealing with multi-party, multi-jurisdictional cases
• Appropriate resource allocation, project management tools and cost management strategies
• M&A pitfalls and CFIUS reform
• Availability of funding: Insurance and litigation financing
Jennifer Recine, partner, Kasowitz Benson Torres (moderator)
Lisa Kistler, associate GC, litigation, Astellas US
Jordan Razza, director of litigation and antitrust, Diageo North America
Aviva Will, senior managing director, Burford Capital

3:10 Coffee and networking

3:25 International litigation and arbitration
• Working with external counsel in multi-jurisdictional scenarios
• Managing internal stakeholders in the context of foreign disputes and investigations
• Coping strategies for complex situations
Andrea Laing, partner, Blake Cassels & Graydon (moderator)
Shari Loe, assistant vice president – senior legal counsel, wholesale, AT&T
Lisa Lecointe-Cephas, executive director, head of global investigations, Merck
Stela Tipi, VP litigation and regulatory enforcement, Deutsche Bank
Kathryn Wozny, legal counsel global healthcare law & investigations, Medtronic

4:15 Fishbowl Session
During this facilitated interactive session, the moderator will draw on advice, experiences and comments from the panel and the audience.
• Sponsorship, mentoring and building a network
• Strategies for achieving a better work-life balance
• Flexible work arrangements
• Tactics to become a powerful champion and supporter of other women
• Your advice to an aspiring women lawyer
• Receive advice for current challenges you face
Elise Bloom, partner, Proskauer Rose (moderator)
Frances Nicastro,
director & head of employment, incentives and pensions legal, Barclays
Wendy Axelrod
, legal career and leadership coach, Wendy S. Axelrod Coaching & Consulting

5:00 Cocktail reception

6:30 Forum adjourns

We will be applying for CLE credits for New York after the Forum concludes. You can earn up to 8 credits. Any questions, please contact Anne de Franca:


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