The Vanguard Forum for General Counsels, NY Sept 11-12,…

The Vanguard Forum for General Counsels

September 11 & 12, 2019 – The Harvard Club, New York City


  • A unique leadership and networking membership for General Counsels from all sectors
  • Pragmatic, real-world topics relevant to GCs, across the career spectrum
  • Session leaders will be deeply experienced GCs, Senior Counsels, CEOs/C-Suite Executives and leadership experts. Participants learn from the sessions and each other.
  • Year-long program launches with face-to-face forum with intimate format and vigorous, engaging dialogue around critical leadership challenges. No PowerPoint presentations or podium speeches
  • Membership in the custom year-long Vanguard Network extends the Forum experience with digital learning, private dinners on leadership topics, and a private networking platform



Wednesday September 11, 2019


12:00 – 12:30 p.m. Registration + Light Lunch
12:30 – 5:30 pm SESSIONS
Session 1: Knowing Yourself as a Leader

(Dialogue with the participants)

Session 2:


Succeeding as a Member of the Top Team 

(Dialogue: CEO and GC)

Session 3: How to Work Effectively with a Board

(Dialogue: Board member and Law Firm Senior Partner)

5:30 – 7:00 pm – Reception


Thursday September 12


8:30 – 9:00 am         Light Breakfast
9:00 am  – 12:00 noon SESSIONS
 Session 4: Leading Through a Corporate Crisis 


 Session 5: Developing, Focusing, and Engaging Your Team

(Breakout sessions)

 Session 6: What are the Key Success Factors in Your Role – And What Does Success Look Like over Time? 

(Fireside chat)



Session leaders:

The session leaders are highly experienced General Counsels, Senior Counsels, CEOs, Board members, and top leadership experts.

Confirmed session leaders include:

Bob Bailey; Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Allergan

Cheryl Beebe, Board member Convergys, past EVP and CFO of Ingredion

Stephen Cutler; Partner, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Tanuja Dehne; Board Member, past EVP NRG Energy

Cynthia Dow; Leader, Global Legal, Regulatory & Compliance Officers Practice, Russell Reynolds Associates

Mark Goodman; Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP

Mary Ann Hynes; Senior Counsel, Dentons; career General Counsel

Garrick Isert; President, Executas; past M.D. of World 50, Inc.

Justin Menkes, Partner, Ventura Partners; Globally recognized leader in talent assessment and C-Suite recruitment

Tom Sabatino; Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Aetna; past GC of Hertz, United Airlines, Walgreens, Schering-Plough, Baxter


Overview of The Vanguard Forum for General Counsels:

The role of General Counsel is one of the most demanding in the C-Suite, whether you are taking the role for the first time — or are addressing fresh challenges later in your career.

As we know, at the GC level, perhaps the most important success factor is continuously honing your leadership edge.

That is why The Vanguard Forum program focuses uniquely on further developing the top leadership capabilities of the by-invitation members – while building valuable networks.

During the in-person Forum, members will engage in sessions led by other General Counsels, CEOs, C-Suite leaders, board members, and leadership experts. The discussion will be centered around real-world top leadership issues and experiences.  In highly interactive sessions, attendees will explore what worked — and what did not – with session leaders, and with each other.

Topics will range from the pivotal role of the GC in handling a corporate crisis, to the special role with the Board, to advising the CEO on critical decisions.

This learning and networking experience builds on other highly impactful Vanguard Forum programs– now in their sixth year. The Forums are part of the The Vanguard Group for Leadership, led by Ken Banta.  The Group is dedicated to supporting senior leadership and company transformation.

Importantly, the meeting in September in many ways will be just the beginning of the Vanguard membership experience.  Members will also join the Vanguard Network.

Via the Network, Forum members will engage in regular digital learning modules designed to further hone leadership capabilities.  Members will also be invited to a series of private working dinners with session leaders on leadership subjects.  And the Network will also give members access to a private digital platform, Vanguard Connect, where they can interact with fellow Vanguard GCs and other Vanguard leaders, and access proprietary learning materials and events.



Member General Counsels will be drawn from across all business sectors in North America.

The Forum and Vanguard Network is by invitation only, via direct invitation from the Forum and the Forum’s Advisors, and through nomination by the company.

Membership for 2019 is capped at approximately 30 individuals.


Vanguard Network

A very important dimension of the Forum is the Vanguard Network.

Via the Vanguard Network, members have access to a year-long curriculum of digital materials including related leadership readings, white papers, and videos issued to the participants monthly.

There will also be a series of approximately six intimate Vanguard Network dinner sessions to which participants will be invited, each with a special guest discussion partner, addressing further top leadership topics.

Participants will also be invited to join the private digital forum, Vanguard Connect, to learn, to network, and to exchange experiences and ideas.

The Vanguard Network enables participants to further build their leadership capabilities, to network, and to continue learning from each other.


Year Two:

Participants are invited to attend for a second year of the Forum to further hone their leadership capabilities.

The agenda for each subsequent year addresses new top leadership topics, so the experience in year two is fully additive.

2018 Sponsor