It's easy to describe Sarbanes-Oxley as the worst thing that has happened to companies in the history of regulation. Reams of reports and white papers have been written about the potential risks in-house counsel face under SOX. But SOX hasn't been all bad news for general counsel.
As recently as 2000, CEOs didn't perceive general counsel and other senior in-house counsel as contributing much value to the company's bottom line. In the late 1990s, the GC commonly reported to the CFO, not the CEO.