Showing Off

I wasn't around when we christened our conference the "SuperConference." I've heard rumors it was the brainchild of the same people who thought the name "Ford Probe" would appeal to women drivers.

What I don't like about the name is that it doesn't tell you what the conference is about. I always tell my reporters to "show, not tell," when describing something in their stories. So instead of writing, "He had a big appetite," you would write, "He consumed four cheeseburgers, fries and an apple pie, and then washed them down with a milkshake."

So here's my attempt at showing you why our conference in Chicago on May 15 and 16 will be so super.

The main reason is the 30 sessions we will be offering at the two-day event. My staff came up with a list of 60 session topics we felt were top of mind for in-house lawyers. We then ran those past an advisory board of GCs, which includes Cornell Boggs from Coors Brewing, Gail Lione from Harley-Davidson and Marschall Smith from Brunswick Corp. The board helped us whittle down the list to 30.

Our goal was to create workshop-style sessions that give attendees the tools and information they need to better manage their departments and the major legal and regulatory risks facing their clients. This year's attendees will learn how to do everything from conducting an internal investigation to using benchmarking studies to improve department performance. A complete session list can be found at

Another thing that makes the conference so super are the speakers. We have recruited about 70 in-house counsel to present at the conference. None are paid. They have agreed to speak because they see value in sharing their best practices with their peers. These speakers are among the best and brightest in the profession, and represent a wide range of companies, from Microsoft Corp. to Church's Chicken.

The icing on the cake is this year's keynoter--Senator Paul Sarbanes. I recently interviewed the former senator, who said he will give attendees a behind-the-scenes look at the political maneuverings that gave birth to SOX.

I hope this has given you a little taste of why we named our conference the "SuperConference." It's not a great name, I admit, but it is a great conference--one of the few events designed for and presented by in-house counsel. I hope to see you there.

Staff Writer

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