Western Pennsylvania Chapter

In-House Counsel Awards 2017

ACC Western Pennsylvania and The Pittsburgh Business Times are proud to announce the inaugural In-House Counsel awards. In today's complex corporate environment, the expertise of a skillful in-house attorney is more important than ever. We encourage you to nominate yourself and/or a company's in-house counsel (individual or department) for their leadership and commitment to their profession and organization.

Nominations are due by March 10, 2017- Utilize this link to submit your nomination


The role of in-house counsel has never been more important or more visible as companies face increasingly complex legal and regulatory challenges. The Pittsburgh Business Times is proud to announce the inaugural 2017 In-House Counsel Awards, in collaboration with the Western Pennsylvania Chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel. The awards will acknowledge the significant role that in-house counsel plays in the success of a business enterprise and will recognize the accomplishments of leading in-house attorneys and/or departments within the western Pennsylvania business community. Awards will highlight outstanding work by  in-house legal counsel and departments in public, private and nonprofit companies of all sizes.

The submission should concretely demonstrate how the nominee has used legal skills to achieve excellent business outcomes.  The ideal candidate will have driven important business objectives (or pro bono/diversity objectives) -- all while lowering costs and increasing predictability.  Special consideration will be given to nominees who have delivered results by applying business-side techniques to legal work (e.g., applications operations tools, design thinking, voice of customer exercises, etc.).  For example, submissions may focus on topics such as:

• Demonstratively delivering excellent client service to internal (or external) clients
• Practicing preventative law by identifying and eliminating avoidable legal risks
• Using value-based fees (i.e., not solely the billable hour or hourly-rate "discounts") to align firm/client relationships around key business objectives
• Strategically allocating work, considering the most appropriate use of internal and external resources
• Employing project management to define scope and set budgets that stick
• Identifying and eliminating inefficiencies through process improvement tools and techniques
• Deploying technology to harness data and support procedures to control spending
• Using knowledge management systems to gain efficiencies
• De-mystifying the legal function for business clients, avoiding surprises, and running the legal function "as a business"

The winners will be honored in a special awards section in the May 19, 2017 issue of the Pittsburgh Business Times.


Nominees must be attorneys who practice law as employees of private or nonprofit organizations and who do not hold themselves out to the public for the practice of law. You may nominate an individual or an entire department. Only individual in-house attorneys are eligible for the Lifetime Achievement Award. The nominee(s) must be based in the Pittsburgh metro area. Nominations are due March 10, 2017.


The Pittsburgh Business Times will bestow awards to 10 individuals and/or departments. Seven awards will be presented for General Excellence. There will be one award each for Lifetime Achievement (individuals only), Pro-Bono Work and Diversity Efforts.


A judging panel will select winners based on information provided in the online nomination form, including responses to the brief written questions. All information submitted will be kept confidential.

The nomination must be completed in one sitting, as information cannot be saved and continued at a later date or time. If you have a question related to this nomination, please contact Richard Cerilli, rcerilli@bizjournals.com or 412-208-3815.


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