Wendy's, Clemson University and NewsCorp have named new governance professionals.
Nader Rad has been named vice president and general counsel of Toshiba America Medical Systems. Rad will oversee legal and regulatory affairs for the California-based offshoot of the Japanese company. He also oversees the company’s work with the Food and Drug Administration and other medical trade associations.
Rad joined Toshiba in 1990 as associate general counsel and has worked as deputy general counsel and general counsel before this latest promotion. Rad’s experience in the legal field stems from extensive work in negotiating and drafting contracts and providing counsel on employment, antitrust and other regulation issues, as well as litigation management and legal training.
International fast food chain Wendy’s has announced the appointment of R. Scott Toop as senior vice president, general counsel and secretary. Toop, pictured right, will serve as a member of the Wendy’s executive leadership team and will report to the company’s president and chief executive officer, Emil Brolick.
Toop has served as executive vice president and general counsel for Tim Hortons, in Oakville, Ontario, since 2009. During his tenure with Tim Hortons, he provided oversight of global legal functions, led the development of corporate and international strategic plans, and successfully realigned the legal team to more effectively support the firm’s business units.
Prior to joining Tim Hortons, Toop worked for 12 years at Yum! Brands and its predecessor, Tricon Global Restaurants. At Yum! and Tricon, he served from 2005 to 2009 as vice president and associate general counsel, and from 1997 to 2005 he was vice president and general counsel at Kentucky Fried Chicken.
Toop’s background also includes extensive experience with PepsiCo, where he served as vice president and division counsel and as an attorney for the Pepsi-Cola Bottling Group. Prior to joining PepsiCo, he served as a corporate associate with Donovan Leisure Newton & Irvine in New York City.
YRC Worldwide has appointed Michelle Russell to serve as the company’s executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary. Russell was formerly senior vice president and general counsel at Spirit AeroSystems.
During her 12-year tenure with YRC, Russell has worked in a variety of capacities including vice president, legal, and assistant general counsel. She earned her JD from the University of Kansas School of Law and is a member of multiple professional organizations.
Atlanta-based Arby’s Restaurant Group has reappointed Nils Okeson to the general counsel and chief development officer posts. Okeson will also serve as a member of the brand’s leadership team. Okeson originally joined the fast food chain in 2005 as general counsel, and in 2007 he was given the general counsel role at Arby’s parent corporation, Triarc.
In these roles, he helped lead the company through a number of significant M&A and financing transactions as Triarc evolved into a restaurant company with Arby’s and then combined with Wendy’s to form the Wendy’s/Arby’s Group in 2008. While at the Wendy’s/Arby’s Group, Okeson assumed additional responsibilities as general counsel of Wendy’s.
Before joining Arby’s in 2005, Okeson was a partner at Alston & Bird in Atlanta, Georgia, where he specialized in corporate governance, M&A and securities law. He also served as a member of the advisory board of the Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware.
The Hooters of America restaurant chain has named Claudia Levitas as its chief legal officer and general counsel. Levitas will oversee all legal matters for the company, including litigation management and franchise law compliance. The Hooters system is comprised of 430 corporate and franchised units, which operate in 44 states across the United States and in 27 foreign countries.
Before joining Hooters, Levitas spent 16 years with Huddle House, an Atlanta-based diner concept with over 400 locations, where she held the titles of general counsel and chief administrative officer. Prior to specializing in the restaurant industry, Levitas worked for five years in a private-practice law firm in Washington, DC, after graduating with a law degree from George Washington University.
Glatfelter, a global manufacturer of specialty papers, has appointed Michael Korniczky to serve as its vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary. Most recently, Korniczky served as chief administrative officer, general counsel and secretary for Graham Packaging, a $2.8 billion global producer of custom blow-molded plastic containers. Previously he xserved as assistant general counsel at Crown Holdings, a $7 billion Fortune 500 consumer packaging manufacturer.
Korniczky earned his bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from the Polytechnic Institute of New York University, his JD degree from Whittier College School of Law, and his LLM in intellectual property law from John Marshall Law School.
Will Barnes has been appointed vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary at Dearborn National, an insurance company based in New York. Barnes will manage and direct legal, regulatory and industry relationships for the Dearborn National brand companies. In addition, he will serve as corporate secretary and will be responsible for board of director functions.
Prior to joining Dearborn, Barnes was general counsel of Sterling Life Insurance, where he was engaged in all major decisions relating to strategy, operations, and marketing and risk management. Before that he was associate general counsel with WellPoint (Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield), where he advised on all aspects of health insurance operations, as well as transactions and compliance. Barnes earned his JD and MBA from Syracuse University and his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Messiah College.
PMI Gold recently appointed Ian Hobson to the post of joint corporate secretary. Hobson is based in Perth, Western Australia, and his appointment will complement the services already provided by the current junior gold exploration corporate secretary, Marion McGrath, in meeting PMI’s corporate regulatory obligations primarily within Australia. Hobson is a chartered accountant and chartered secretary who provides company secretarial services to ASX-listed companies. He has had over 25 years’ experience in Australia, Canada and the UK in the areas of company secretarial requirements, corporate governance, financial controls, due diligence, prospectuses and M&A.
Acorn Energy, an energy technology company, has named Heather Mallard as vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary. Mallard will succeed Joe Cogdell, who had served at both the company and its CoaLogix subsidiary. Mallard is presently a partner in the law firm of Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, where she practiced for over 23 years. She is a seasoned corporate and business lawyer with a practice that has spanned a variety of industries, including manufacturing, healthcare and broadcasting.
Mallard is a 1985 summa cum laude graduate of Grove City College in Grove City, Philadelphia, and a 1988 summa cum laude graduate of Washington and Lee University School of Law in Lexington, Virginia.
Clemson University has named W. C. Hood as its new general counsel. Hood has 21 years of legal experience ranging from trial litigation to managing a university research foundation. He currently serves as executive director and attorney for the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Foundation for Research Development, and will begin a new assignment as Clemson’s chief legal adviser in April.
The school’s president, James Barker, says, ‘Hood brings not only a wealth of relevant experience but also a set of values that make him a good fit for Clemson. He practices high performance with high integrity.’ Hood succeeds the late Clay Steadman, who died unexpectedly on 17 April 2011 after serving as the university’s general counsel for seven years.
As legal counsel and head of MUSC’s research foundation, Hood has provided leadership and strategies for MUSC’s university-industry partnerships, economic development and entrepreneurial activities. He has provided advice on a range of legal matters, including not-for-profit law, research contracts, intellectual property and technology transfer, international collaborations and human resources, and has assisted with university policy development and strategic planning.
Previously Hood led the Charleston office of Needle & Rosenberg, an Atlanta-based intellectual property firm, where he represented major research universities across the country. He has also run his own litigation practice in Charleston.
News Corporation has appointed Gerson Zweifach to serve as group general counsel. Zweifach, formerly a partner at the Williams & Connolly law firm, will become a senior executive vice president of the company and will report to Rupert Murdoch, chairman and CEO of News Corp. He replaces Janet Nova, who operated as the company’s interim general counsel.
In his 30-plus years at Williams & Connolly, Zweifach’s litigation practice covered a wide variety of areas including significant media and First Amendment cases, as well as patent, antitrust and securities matters. He has handled a number of high-profile cases as both plaintiff’s and defendant’s counsel in courts throughout the US.
Zweifach is a graduate of Brown University, where he obtained the magna cum laude distinction, and Yale Law School. He is a member of the District of Columbia and New York bars.
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