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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

An Evening with U.S. Olympic Committee GC Rana Dershowitz

In the intimate, candlelit dining room of the community bistro The Kitchen Denver, a group of roughly 45 women directed their attention to a special guest. Rana Dershowitz, General Counsel of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), appeared as the keynote speaker at Hogan Lovells' annual Colorado women's networking event. These events feature a remarkable woman engaged in business, civic, cultural, or community activities. Hogan Lovells was proud to have Rana speak about her impactful role with the USOC and share her insights on the London 2012 Olympic Games and the rising success of women's sports.

Rana, who was named General Counsel for the USOC in March 2008, currently oversees the organization’s legal functions, which include any issues that may arise before – and during – the Olympic Games. This encompasses intellectual property and branding issues, such as the challenges associated with coordinating the financial investment of event sponsors, as well as athletes’ rights – ensuring the athletes are treated fairly.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Former Hogan Lawyer Named to State Supreme Court

by Patricia Brannan

Congratulations to firm alumna, Wilhelmina Wright, who has been appointed by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton to the Minnesota Supreme Court.  Judge Wright currently serves on the Minnesota Court of Appeals, the state’s intermediate appellate tribunal.  She is the first African-American woman to be named to the state’s highest court.

Judge Wright was as associate at the firm from 1991 to 1995.  She was deeply involved in, and committed to, litigation matters for our education clients.  I will never forget sitting at counsel’s table while she made her first argument to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in a complex and challenging school desegregation case.  Judge Wright referenced that work at the firm, and her personal history in attending public schools during the school desegregation fight in Norfolk, Va., in her comments at the nomination announcement.  The video clips from the announcement convey her clear thinking, powerful values, and warm heart.

Everyone who crossed her path here knew that Judge Wright would go far.  The people of Minnesota are very fortunate to have her serving them as their next Supreme Court Justice.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

How will the health care decision affect women?

In a 5-4 ruling today, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate as a constitutional exercise of Congressional taxing power. Our lawyers have provided an in-depth analysis on how this decision will impact our clients and the future of the U.S. healthcare system.

Some of the big implications of the Affordable Care Act for women:

More of the population will be covered: According to a ForbesWoman blog post, there are currently 19 million uninsured women in the United States. When the ACA takes full effect in 2014, 10.3 million of those women will be covered by Medicaid due to their low-income status.

Elimination of gender rating: Insurers will be barred from charging women more than men for the same health care coverage – a practice that currently costs women about $1 billion per year.

No preventative care co-pays: Under the ACA, most gender-specific preventative care will no longer require a co-pay. According to Lois Uttley, co-founder of Raising Women's Voices, this includes “contraception, breastfeeding supports (including rental of breast pumps), annual well-woman exams, and screening for gestational diabetes, domestic violence, and sexual transmitted diseases."

Change in defining preexisting conditions: Insurance companies may no longer treat pregnancy, previous C-sections, breast cancer, or sexual assault or abuse as preexisting conditions that preclude coverage for treatment related to these issues.

Gains for mothers: According to the March of Dimes, only 13 percent of insurance plans currently cover maternity care, which will be a required coverage area under the ACA. Working mothers at companies with more than 50 employees will be provided a provide place to pump breast milk during required breaks.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Breaking decisions from the Supreme Court: Term in review

On Tuesday afternoon, three of Hogan Lovells’ Appellate practice partners will provide an analysis of some of the key decisions that will impact businesses as the Supreme Court concludes its current term.

Neal Katyal, former Acting Solicitor General of the United States and Appellate practice Co-Director, Cate Stetson, Co-Director of our Appellate practice; and Chris Handman, a seasoned Appellate partner, will coduct a 30-minute webcast on the ramifications of decisions handed down by the high court this term, which may include:
  • FCC v. Fox: Will the Federal Communications Commission’s indecency standards for television be deemed in violation of the First Amendment?
  • Arizona v. United States: Will Arizona’s controversial anti-immigration provisions be allowed to stand?
  • Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Shell: Can corporations be held liable in the United States for human rights violations under the Alien Tort Statute?
  • Knox v. Service Employees International Union, Local 1000: Are public sector unions required to provide sufficient notice to all employees about fee increases for political advocacy expenditures? Do non-union members have the right to decline to pay these fees?
  • Affordable Care Act: How will the three key cases challenging aspects of President Obama’s healthcare plan be resolved?
The program, which begins at 1 p.m. EDT on June 26, will also provide essential background on the Supreme Court, including the composition, recent personnel changes, and background on the Justices, and explain the impact of these structures on the decisions.

Register online for the free webcast.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Benefits of Giving Back

By Stephanie Carman, Counsel, Investigations, White Collar and Fraud

“A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.”
Margaret Mead

It all started with a call from a law school friend asking if I would be interested in attending a Kids Club event. I inquired into the program and learned that Kids Club is a program of the Dade County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Section (DCBA YLS) that organizes activities one Saturday a month for children in state care. Little did I know that this commitment of a few hours a month would become a key component in my professional development.

I fell in love with the program and became a committee member and, later, committee chair. I eventually became a board member of the DCBA and of its YLS, working my way up to President of the YLS. My commitment to giving back has since expanded to include our local Legal Services Program, the Alumni Council of my alma mater, Tufts University, and the Local Community Board of the American Diabetes Association.

Serving on various boards has expanded and strengthened my professional networks and provided me access to individuals and experience I may not have had. In my experience, the boards are positive, encouraging environments outside the office that allow me to learn and grow as I develop, plan, and implement new programs and solve challenges facing the organization.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Reflections from the Queen Mother: An Evening at Hogan Lovells with King Peggy

By Eleanor Herman, Author of King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and How She Changed an African Village

Born into a land of prosperity with a strong social safety net, most of us Americans have no idea that half the world lives with no running water, poor or no education, no healthcare, and sometimes no food. Having spent several months in the village of Otuam in Ghana – one of Africa’s most prosperous nations – I can only imagine how impoverished the others are.

Since I returned home to my comfortable life in McLean, Va., I haven’t been able to look at anything the same. When I turn on the shower, when I open the refrigerator packed with food, when I start my car, when I look at the phone and know I can dial up an ambulance within minutes, even when I flush the toilet, I am thankful for these blessings and horrified that billions of people don’t have them. It came as a shocking revelation to me that so many people suffer and die needlessly in a world of abundance, while we thoughtlessly waste money on things we don’t really need.

What can one person (who is not named Bill Gates) do to help those who didn’t win the birth lottery? My first step was to donate an electric fresh water well, filtered against ground-borne contaminants, on Main Street, so the children of Otuam did not have to walk so far for water before school. But I do not have the funds to help the village in all the many ways it needs help. And while others have come forward to dig new wells, the lack of an ambulance truly disturbed me. My young Otuam interpreter’s sister died in the back of a taxi on the way to the hospital to give birth. She was 24 and left behind two children.

Fortunately, as a writer, I can get the word out, and my book King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and How She Changed an African Village is doing that.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Structuring Employee Mobility in a Global Workplace

By Barbara Roth, Global Co-Head of the Employment Group
By Bill Flanagan, Partner, Employment Group

Earlier this month, Hogan Lovells and the Washington Metropolitan Area Corporate Counsel Association (WMACCA) co-hosted a luncheon and workshop called “Minimize the Risks – Structuring Employee Mobility in a Global Workplace.”

This topic was very well received by the 50 or so in-house counsel who attended from companies such as Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin, to name a few. We discussed how relocation of an employee from one country to another can expose the employer to liability in multiple jurisdictions, and how the structure of the relocation – such as temporary transfer, secondments, and local hire – can alter the potential liabilities in the event of a rupture in the employment relationship.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Lifting One Village at a Time: An Evening at Hogan Lovells with King Peggy

By Randy Segal, partner, global transactions

On February 12, I wrote about the amazing, personal story of King Peggy, a D.C. secretary who became the King of the Ghanaian village Otuam, and her vision for its future.

On May 31, Hogan Lovells will be holding an event “with a little help from its friends” to support King Peggy’s vision for her village, along with that of Eleanor Herman, co-author (and “Queen Mother”) of King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and the Inspiring Story of How She Changed an African Village.

Since I first wrote my blog post in February, this nationally recognized book has been featured on NPR, CBS This Morning, and The Colbert Report, and it was a selection in Oprah’s Book Club. CBS News has also covered King Peggy’s story.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Conference Focuses on Development in Latin America

On May 3 the Latin America Practice Group Conference brought together nearly 70 clients, Hogan Lovells lawyers, and lawyers from our Latin American relationship firms to discuss the challenges and opportunities that exist for companies operating in Latin America.

The Conference hosted two panels composed of lawyers and executives entrenched in the region’s corporate and financial development. Attendees also heard from keynote speaker Anthony Harrington, former U.S. Ambassador to Brazil, on the macro socio-economic outlook of the area.

The morning panel, moderated by José F. Valdivia III, a finance partner in Hogan Lovells’ Miami office, focused on how law firms can build better relationships with businesses and, more specifically, general counsel, based in Latin America. Panelists included:

• Oscar Arroyo, CABCORP, General Counsel;
• Valeria Chapa Garza, Honeywell International, Inc., General Counsel, Latin America;
• Rose Marie E. Glazer, Siemens AG, General Counsel, Americas;
• Dean M. Hasseman, CITGO, General Counsel; and
• Krista Sweigart, The AES Corporation, Senior Corporate Counsel.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Predicting the Next Class of Female CEOs

Although only 35 of the nation’s Fortune 1000 companies are managed by women, at least one female CEO believes that number will double by 2017. Others echo the confidence of Maggie Wilderotter, head of Frontier Communications Corp., pointing to an increasingly strong pipeline of highly qualified female senior executives across all industries.

But who are the odds-on favorites to take over the corner office? Using the results of an informal poll, the Wall Street Journal this week released a top 10 list, selecting current managers who have the best shot at CEO in the next five years.

WSJ was quick to note that some of the more popular picks – including Sheryl Sandberg and Sherilyn McCoy – did not make the cut for varying reasons, including company size or decisions to head for greener pastures.

The list reflects a shift in traditional gender roles that our own Randy Segal detailed a few weeks ago – many had husbands who abandoned the fast track to support their wives’ careers.

Here is the rather impressive lineup:

• Charlene Begley, General Electric Co.
• Gail Boudreaux, United Health Group
• Rosalind Brewer, Wal-Mart Stores Inc.
• Juliana Chugg, General Mills Inc.
• Virginia "Gina" Drosos, Procter & Gamble Co.
• Jan Fields, McDonald's Corp.
• Michelle Gass, Starbucks Corp.
• Melanie Healey, Procter & Gamble Co.
• Marissa Mayer, Google Inc.
• Anne Sweeney, Walt Disney Co.

Monday, April 2, 2012

The Big Equal: The Coming of Age of the Feminine Mystique

By Randy Segal, partner, global mergers and acquisitions, technology and telecommunications

When I began my legal career in the 1980s, I did not plan my work-life balance or the roles to be played in my soon-to-be family. Analogous to a “thrust upon conflict” (some might say a tsunami), I found myself steeped in NYC legal practice, and the mother of four children (the last three of which were triplets).

Fortunately, my husband (a photographer) was able to take a practical look at the situation and say, “Okay, we follow your career,” and soon became my family’s CFO and COO and eventually the stay-at-home dad. While this has long become unremarkable to my family, I have had many (including a chairman of the board of a public company for which I was general counsel) tell me I was the first female executive he had ever met where this was the case.

Washington Post reporter Liza Mundy’s new book “The Richer Sex” argues that “the Big Flip” in gender roles “is just around the corner” and that “women, not men, will become the top earners in households,” transforming male-female relationships in all respects. While I think this is the overly-optimistic stuff of which books are made, I am quite intrigued by the prospect of the scales moving closer and closer to a “Big Equal.”

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

DAY THREE - Analysis of Supreme Court Arguments on Health Reform

Today is the last of three days that the U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on the constitutionality of the health reform law. Hogan Lovells’ prior work on the case, combined with the fact that our lawyers are inside the courtroom each day, allow for insightful analyses. A summary has been provided for each day of argument.

Read our summary of Day Three.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

DAY TWO Analysis of Supreme Court Arguments on Health Reform

Today marked the second of three days that the U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on the constitutionality of the health reform law. Hogan Lovells’ prior work on the case, combined with the fact that our lawyers are inside the courtroom each day, allow for insightful analyses. A summary will be provided following each day of argument.

Click here for our summary of Day Two

Monday, March 26, 2012

DAY ONE Analysis of Supreme Court Arguments on Health Reform

Today marked the first of three days that the U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on the constitutionality of the health reform law. Hogan Lovells’ prior work on the case, combined with the fact that our lawyers are inside the courtroom each day, allow for insightful analyses. A summary will be provided immediately following each day of argument.

Click here for our summary of Day One

In Defense of the Affordable Care Act

Hogan Lovells partner Neal Katyal, former Acting Solicitor General of the United States and currently professor at Georgetown University Law Center, spent some time to sit down for interviews with NPR and AFP prior to the hearings. Katyal previously argued in lower courts in favor of the Affordable Care Act, currently being challenged in the United States Supreme Court.

Please click the links below to read transcripts of the NPR and AFP interviews with Neal Katyal.

NPR – Defending The Affordable Care Act

AFP – Rejecting ‘Obamacare’ Would Be ‘Grave and Profound’

Spring Reading: Stop and Smell the Roses (and Eat the Berries)

By Randy Segal, partner, global merger and acquisitions, technology and telecommunications

Years ago, I worked with a CFO whose picture was in the dictionary under the word “unflappable.” The company was a start-up, going from one financial, technological or operational crisis to another. One day the CFO told me the following mini-parable: “Imagine you are running through the forest with a lion chasing you, and you then find yourself at the edge of the cliff, holding onto a berry bush with the lion snarling within inches of you. You think that you are about to either be eaten by the lion or fall off the cliff to a certain death. Make certain while you are holding onto that bush to take a taste of those berries, and savor them.”

I was 15 years younger at the time, at the height of juggling my career and raising four young children, and all I could think in reaction to his parable was that I was hanging off the cliff about to die and the CFO guiding our company’s success wanted me to stop and eat berries.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Salvaging Positives from Distress – A Bankruptcy Lawyer’s View of the Current Global Economic Turmoil

By Robin Keller, Head of the US Business Restructuring and Insolvency Practice at Hogan Lovells US LLP

During the New Hampshire primary, emphasizing lessons learned from his experience as a turnaround manager at Bain & Company, Mitt Romney said he wanted Americans to be able to switch insurance companies if they were unhappy with their service.

"I like being able to fire people who provide services to me," he said. "You know, if someone doesn't give me the good service I need, I want to say, 'You know, I'm going to go get someone else to provide that service to me.'"

This abbreviated articulation of certain fundamentals of the benefits of competition launched a flurry of attacks on Romney’s work investing in and turning around troubled companies while at Bain, including allegations that efforts to turn around firms result in layoffs, plant closures and the like and are destructive. However, even Ron Paul defended Romney, stating that his work at Bain was based on free market concepts. “You save companies, you save jobs when you reorganize companies that are going to go bankrupt," Paul said.

Basic principles of right-sizing a struggling business are now topics of daily discussion on the international scene, as the governments of Germany and France struggle to understand how to rein in Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain, who threaten to take down the financial system that underlies the EU with their excesses of public spending and inadequate developments in revenue generation.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

How Girl Scouts View Leadership

Although today’s young women see the glass ceiling as a very real barrier to career success, most are confident they will live to see a female in the White House.

Last week, Girl Scouts of the USA released the results of a survey that was conducted to better understand how girls ages 8 to 17 view the concept of leadership. The results paint a picture of disquiet about the current business environment, tempered with optimism about the future.

Among the major findings of the study: nearly 60% of girls believe that women can rise up in a company or organization but will rarely make it all the way to the top, and 67% say that women are more burdened than men by family responsibilities as they pursue a career.

Despite their negative view of the current business environment, 78% of the 1,001 survey respondents think they have it much easier than their mothers’ generation did.

Overwhelmingly, the survey respondents expressed strong interest in having current business leaders reach out to them so they might learn from the women’s successes – but many reported they had limited opportunity to interact with successful women.

It may be that today’s leading women hold the key to breaking down barriers for the next generation. How can you support the aspirations of our future female leaders?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

King Peggy, Margaret Thatcher and Meryl Streep

by Randy Segal

People are fascinated with the “Iron Lady” Margaret Thatcher and with Meryl Streep’s Golden Globe winning portrayal of Mrs. Thatcher.

Is this the result of a fascination with Margaret Thatcher, the first female British prime minister and the longest-serving of the 20th Century, whose strict conservative policies, hard line against trade unions and tough rhetoric in opposition to the Soviet Union earned her the nickname the “Iron Lady”? Or is it simply a result of a remarkable performance by a remarkable actress?

The accolades for Streep’s performance and portrayal were last month at this year’s Screen Actors Guild Awards, where the performance of Viola Davis, portraying a maid in the civil rights drama “The Help,” took the top honor.

In her acceptance speech, Ms. Davis provided the advice to “Dream big and dream fierce.”

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Resources on Women in Leadership And Management

by Patricia Brannan

To build on the Mind the (Gender) Gap post below, I’d like to offer some resources on the positive side of the equation on women in leadership and management. Every business wants to identify a winning team that creates the best conditions for success. Research data support the proposition that the involvement of women as corporate leaders is correlated with higher profits. Some studies focus on boards, while others highlight the value of women in executive positions.

Here are a few resources that I hope you will find useful...

Friday, January 27, 2012

Hogan Lovells Celebrates Data Privacy Day

On Saturday and in the surrounding weeks, countries around the world will celebrate Data Privacy Day to emphasize that privacy is our shared responsibility. It’s important to think about what you share and with whom.

Hogan Lovells Privacy and Information Privacy lawyers are celebrating Data Privacy Day by participating in several important data privacy events across the world. One way to celebrate Data Privacy Day is by signing up to receive our privacy blog postings at Hogan Lovells Chronicle of Data Protection. Please click on the link below and enter your email address to be notified of new postings on privacy developments from around the world. Staying up to date is good for you!

Link: http://www.hldataprotection.com/

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Mind the (Gender) Gap

On the heels of an inspiring international discussion aimed at supporting and promoting the roles of women in business comes an unpleasant reminder that the fight for gender parity in the workplace is far from over.

According to a recent report from Catalyst, “When women did all the things they have been told will help them get ahead — using the same tactics as men — they still advanced less than their male counterparts and had slower pay growth.”

Little PINK Book on Wednesday released the article "What Sets You Free?,” describing some of the obstacles that block women’s paths to career advancement.

Hogan Lovells’ Claudette Christian tells reporter Caroline Cox that one barrier holding women back is the fact that, because men have been in positions of power for generations, “[t]hey have more role models, and the path to success is more defined and [easier] to emulate.”

On the flip side, says the co-chair of global legal practice, “more women voluntarily leave their careers as they near the senior executive level” for varying reasons.

And so the question remains: How do women successfully navigate the corporate leadership maze?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

International Council on Women’s Business Leadership (ICWBL) Holds Inaugural Meeting

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Tuesday hosted the inaugural meeting of an advisory council created to support and promote the roles of women in international business.

In her opening remarks, Secretary Clinton solicited ideas from the 20-member International Council on Women’s Business Leadership (ICWBL), asking how to “boost growth … increase productivity … and add new value to companies and economies” across the globe.

“Now, everyone is searching for answers to those questions,” said Clinton, “but not enough people realize that part of the answer, a large part of the answer, lies with women.

“Including more women at the top of organizations, businesses and the public sector is not just the right thing to do; it is the smart thing to do,” Clinton said. “It’s good for business. It’s good for results.”

The ICWBL is composed of leading global women from a wide range of backgrounds and is chaired by Secretary Clinton. Serving as vice-chairs are Cherie Blair, founder of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, and PepsiCo chairman and CEO Indra Nooyi.