Senior vice president and general counsel
Roger James has enjoyed a meteoric rise at MTV (now part of Viacom) that has seen him move from a junior position in the UK legal team to overseeing business and managing legal affairs teams based in London, New York and Miami.
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General counsel and company secretary
After eight years with SUEZ, there is no doubt that François Graux has earned his stripes. He has steered the company through mergers with Gaz de France in 2008 and then 2012’s tie-up with International Power, which saw it become part of the world’s largest independent utility company.
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Head of legal, lending support, commercial banking
Lloyds Banking Group
As head of legal at one of Britain’s ‘big four’ banks, Jon Alexander at Lloyds Banking Group already enjoys a high profile within banking circles, but he has been particularly sought after during the past few months. As one banking partner recently put it: ‘He is one of the most powerful in-house lawyers as he is a decisive influence on the numerous “pass-through panels” of Lloyds Banking Group, which will be decided on over the next few months.’
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General counsel for corporate Banking, global restructuring group and Ulster Bank
One law banking partner says that Leonie Fleming ‘falls into the “very influential” bracket due to her position, but also the “up and coming bracket”, because I feel she has further to go at RBS’. There’s no doubt that she has won praise for her adroit handling of complex regulatory issues during a difficult few years for the bank.
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Head of legal
As UK legal head for Dutch bank ING, Adrian Marsh has sat at the epicentre of the industry’s divestment trend; as a condition of ING’s receipt of state aid following the credit crisis, the EU required that it dispose of its insurance and investment management operations.
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General counsel for UK and western Europe
Although Emma Slatter was only appointed GC for UK and Western Europe in May 2010, one banking partner describes her as spearheading a ‘leading in-house team that is at the forefront of innovative transactional support, regulatory-driven initiatives and external counsel management’.
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Managing director and EMEA general counsel
Maria Leistner joined Credit Suisse in 2004, when it reorganised its operations into a ‘one bank’ model to ensure collaboration between its private banking, investment banking and asset management divisions.
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EMEA general counsel
Described as ‘a safe pair of hands in a turbulent market’, Karen Linney is fair but expects value from external counsel.
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Deputy general counsel and international general counsel
‘In-house counsel are now acting more and more as critical advisers to the businesses that they cover,’ says David Greenwald, who has been deeply involved in helping his bank recover from the credit crunch. ‘They understand the business itself, the law applicable to it, the company’s culture and hot buttons so they can provide comprehensive advice.’
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EMEA general counsel
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Sajid Hussein’s experience at Bank of America Merrill Lynch has certainly prepared him for exciting challenges. When he joined Bank of America in 2005, he couldn’t have known that within three years he would be working on one of the biggest deals of his life.
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