Law Schedule of Classes

NOTE: Course offerings change. Classes offered this semester may not be offered in future semesters.

251.73 sec. 001 - Being General Counsel (Fall 2022)

Instructor: Seth R Jaffe  (view instructor's teaching evaluations - degree students only)
Instructor: Mark J Lehocky  (view instructor's teaching evaluations - degree students only)
View all teaching evaluations for this course - degree students only

Units: 3
Grading Designation: Graded
Mode of Instruction: In-Person


Th 10:00 AM - 12:40 PM
Location: 🔒 Log-in to view location

From August 25, 2022
To December 01, 2022

Course Start: August 25, 2022
Course End: December 01, 2022
Class Number: 31909

Enrollment info:
Enrolled: 25
Waitlisted: 0
Enroll Limit: 25
As of: 02/17 06:39 AM

This course will dive deep into the role of general counsel. We’ll look at what a general counsel (GC) does every day, who they work with and what types of issues come across their desks, including an array of social and political issues. Through lecture, readings and a series of exercises, students will learn to whom the GC is accountable, how they act as a corporate leader and strategist, and what qualities world-class general counsels share. We will also focus on the human aspects of the role - how a GC deal with individual and organizational issues; how they manage through crisis events, layoffs, and have difficult and courageous conversations; what group and individual behaviors and psychological issues they face; how they work with outside counsel; and how and when should the GC do what’s right, even when it’s unpopular. We also look at the various career paths toward becoming a general counsel.
The course objectives are to:

Understand the role and responsibilities of the modern GC and how it differs from private practice, and critical skill sets for attorneys seeking to become and work with GCs as well as those wishing to be hired and retained by GCs
Map a path toward a future GC position
Experiential learning to deal with the issues, challenges and nuances of the role
Apply behavioral science data and expertise to optimize individual and group relationships, manage difficult conversations with internal teams and outside counsel and the emotional aspects of the role
Review successful and unsuccessful examples of GCs prioritizing work, managing critical issues and handling crisis events.

1. Class participation in discussions, exercises and simulations
2. Written, oral, and video evaluations of scenarios and presentation of alternatives and advice, including self-reflective analysis

•Seth Jaffe, Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Levi Strauss & Co.; former general counsel of William-Sonoma, Inc. and CareThere, Inc.; and formerly practicing at the McCutchen law firm in San Francisco. JD, University of Michigan Law School. See a href=
• Mark LeHocky, Former public company general counsel (Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream, Inc.; Ross Stores, Inc.); Mediator and Arbitrator; and Adjunct Faculty at Haas Graduate School of Business. JD, Berkeley Law. See a href=

Attendance at the first class is mandatory for all currently enrolled and waitlisted students; any currently enrolled or waitlisted students who are not present on the first day of class (without prior permission of the instructor) will be dropped. The instructor will continue to take attendance throughout the add/drop period and anyone who moves off the waitlist into the class must continue to attend or have prior permission of the instructor in order not to be dropped.

Requirements Satisfaction:

Units from this class count towards the J.D. Experiential Requirement.

Exam Notes: (P) Final paper  
Course Category: Business Law
This course is listed in the following sub-categories:
Simulation Courses

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