The Assistant will provide administrative and operational strategic support to the Legal Division within the Office of the President. The Assistant is the Legal Team’s first point of contact for the rest of the company. S/he will manage and coordinate the company’s registration in countries around the world where Creative has a presence; will perform initial vetting and selection duties both of local counsel overseas and specialty U.S. counsel; will work with said counsel on a variety of legal and administrative issues as they arise; will draft and/or finalize company legal documents, templates and correspondence for the General Counsel; will organize and improve the company’s intellectual property, registration and legal representation tracking software; and will coordinate the company’s banking efforts abroad, trademark and copyright protections in the U.S. The Assistant will also perform high-level administrative duties relating to the management and governance of Creative Associates. The Assistant is expected to work closely with and coordinate with the company’s senior executive team as well as all divisions and corporate services as directed.
This position is housed in the Legal Department within the Office of the President, reporting to the General Counsel.
- Provide exceptional and comprehensive operational and strategic recommendations and support to the legal division at Creative and act as the first point of contact for all legal inquiries and all legally-oriented operational issues. This includes but is not limited to: pro-actively seeking out, vetting and selecting and selecting exceptional legal counsel to support Creative’s projects abroad - including the negotiation of legal fees - monitoring and keeping the General Counsel apprised of new business development opportunities that may require registration in new countries, monitoring, maintaining and updating Creative’s database of country registrations and international attorneys, overseeing and facilitating the registration process when Creative wins a new project in a new country, liaising with local counsel and project teams to troubleshoot any legal issues that may arise during the start-up, implementation and close-out phases of a project, providing administrative and when necessary, substantive support to the FOIA coordinator on all incoming FOIA requests, and processing all key legal documents necessary for project implementation, such as Power of Attorneys, Board Resolutions, and other legal documents necessary to project implementation.
- Provide exceptional organizational and administrative support to the legal division by tightening procedures around the production and distribution of key documents, such as Power of Attorneys and Board Resolutions, creating a comprehensive profile of all “templates” for the legal division’s key documents, and continuing to develop systematic ways to keep track of all of Creative’s sensitive legal documents.
- Facilitate increased communication between the legal division and other divisions in Creative, such as the Proposal Development Division, project teams, and F & C, in order to ensure coordination on key aspects of project implementation and to recommend process improvements, in particular by serving as the main point of contact during capture and registration/start-up, to ensure that legal is proactive in responding to the needs of Creative’s other divisions and clients and is communicating internally in order to respond to situations pro-actively rather than retroactively.
- In coordination with the General Counsel, develop and conduct regular trainings on HQ Legal’s policies and best practices.
- Oversee and coordinate the preparation of corporate legal documents and correspondence needed for foreign registrations, including country-specific Powers of Attorney and Board Resolutions; coordinate same for domestic activities such as mergers, acquisitions and other partnering agreements;
- Coordinate and manage vetting and selection processes for both new local counsel overseas and specialty U.S. counsel, regularly recommending selections;
- Manage bank opening/closing and tax/exemption issues and coordinate same with local counsel and F&C, especially at project start-up and close-out;
- Manage and coordinate project leases and other field contractual documents needed for smooth project implementation;
- In coordination with the POC from HR and local counsel, manage and monitor the adaptation of Creative’s HR manual and employment agreement to ensure compliance with local labor laws;
- Monitor Creative’s on-going bids and coordinate with the Business Development, Field Operations and Program divisions to determine when to begin registration in countries new to Creative;
- Conduct research, as needed, on registration forms and processes in countries that are new to Creative;
- Manage and coordinate, with input from the GC and external counsel as needed, the processing of Creative’s trademarks, statements of use, extensions, copyright registrations and any other documents related to the protection of the company’s intellectual property;
- Further develop and recommend changes to improve systems of company software to track IP, registration and legal representation status worldwide;
- Manage, review and update as needed, Legal’s library of corporate templates, such as teaming agreements and non-disclosure agreements;
- Manage and coordinate the selection, renewal and updating of a coverage-appropriate and cost-competitive portfolio of corporate insurance products, providing recommendations based on market research;
- Engage in regular and frequent communication with the field offices to proactively address legal, operational, labor, taxation and real property issues, and/or troubleshoot legal and compliance-related issues as they arise;
- Manage documents and schedules, and coordinate with other company officials, when litigation, investigations (internal or external) or emergency situations arise;
- Coordinate, and support as Company POC, incoming and outgoing FOIA actions;
- Participate and assist, as needed, client, external and internal meetings, workshops, trainings and events, as appropriate;
- In coordination with the General Counsel, develop and conduct regular trainings on HQ Legal’s policies and best practices; and
- Travel to field as needed to support any project or strategic activities.
Required Skills & Qualifications:
- Bachelor’s Degree in an area relevant to this employment opportunity;
- At least four (4) years of prior relevant work experience;
- Courteous and professional manner; multicultural sensitivity; must be able to maintain a calm and professional attitude at all times;
- Able to maintain a high degree of confidentiality;
- Proven ability to use sound and accurate judgment to resolve problems;
- Strong writing and editing skills;
- Excellent communication and analytical skills;
- Solid organizational and administrative skills;
- Ability to work well in a team environment and to multi-task under tight deadlines;
- Ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a team;
- Flexibility to work with various units and teams across Creative Associates; and
- Comprehensive knowledge of Microsoft programs (excel, power point, MS project, etc).
Desired Skills and Qualifications:
- Proficiency in Spanish, French or Arabic, a plus.
About the Organization
Creative Associates International is a dynamic, fast-growing global development firm that specializes in education, economic growth, democratic development and post-crisis stabilization. Based in Washington, D.C., Creative has a field presence in more than 25 countries with a strong client portfolio that includes the U.S. Agency for International Development and the State Department, among others. Since its founding in 1977, Creative has earned a solid reputation among its clients and is well-regarded by competitors and partners alike.