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    April 25, 2008  
 
 

SHRED DAY!


Our friends at Goulston & Storrs have announced Steven Schneider has joined the firm's D.C. office as a director in the tax, corporate and real estate groups.  Most recently a partner at Miller Chevalier, Steve serves as Adjunct Professor at the Georgetown U. Law Center.


 

This morning, we headed out to the office of IP giant Finnegan Henderson to check out its latest green initiative: the firm partnered with Office Shredding to host “Shred Day,” an opportunity for Finnegan’s 600 employees to destroy sensitive documents at no charge. Office Shredding then recycled all the confetti-looking results. Somewhere, Al Gore is smiling.

 

Kane Company (owners of Office Shredding) VP Jim Durfee and Finnegan Henderson’s green champion Mark Sweet. Mark, a partner in the chemical group, tells us the office cafeteria now uses plates, cups and cutlery made from cornstarch. To prove their durability, Mark says the office chef served up thick, dry pork chops. We’re happy to report the cornstarch cutlery survived even the trial by lawyers.      

 

The shredder is housed in what looks like a moving van, and can annihilate 95 gallons-worth of paper in eight minutes. Office Shredding began this free service for professional firms in March, and will hold more “shred days” in May.    


Risky Business

 

An Oxford study has found that within the next five years, 83% of public companies will face a crisis whacking their stock value by 20-30%. Good thing our friends at the local Association of Corporate Counsel chapter (WMACCA) assembled an all-star panel to give crisis-management tips for GCs. Never one to miss expert advice or free lunches, we hit the Tysons Hilton on Tuesday.     

 

Former Sallie Mae GC Robert Lavet (second from left) did panel duty with Ilene Merdinger, managing director at Marsh McLennan; Alan Adamson, GC for developer Carl M. Freeman; and Kathy Barlow, risk specialist with Marsh USA. Ilene pointed to data breech, like an employee losing a laptop, as one of the biggest crisis triggers around. She says it’s critical to make a crisis plan and run drills twice a year to test preparedness. And she isn’t kidding—for one consulting client, Ilene placed a 3:00 a.m. call to the CEO, informing him that someone had died from using a company product. The company went in crisis mode for three hours before Ilene let on that it was all a drill. Hmm, that takes guts. Robert emphasized a GC’s need take responsibility for managing electronic documents. “How often is a crisis made worse by destroying documents?” he asked. Arthur Andersen was unavailable for comment.     

 

Canam Steel Legal VP Ron Peppe with Karen Litsinger, GC for the pharma consultants at Mirixa. Ron’s take on crisis management:  companies need to speak with a unified voice. A member of the Falls Church School Board, he hits the gym nightly to relieve the stress of board meetings. Wow, a hidden upside of going through crisis—killer abs.

 
 
 
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