In-house counsel at American Airlines, City Electric Supply, Forney Corporation, MB2 Dental and OpTic Gaming are finalists to be honored for the 2022 Dallas Fort Worth Corporate Counsel Awards.
Each year, the Association of Corporate Counsel’s Dallas-Fort Worth Chapter and The Texas Lawbook recognize about two-dozen corporate in-house counsel for the extraordinary legal work and leadership they demonstrated during the previous year.
Last week, The Lawbook and ACC DFW announced finalists for several of the awards.
Today, the finalists for the 2022 DFW Corporate Counsel Awards for Senior Counsel of the Year for a Large Legal Department (21-plus lawyers), the 2022 DFW Corporate Counsel Award for a Small Legal Department (1-5 attorneys) and the 2022 DFW Corporate Counsel Award for Rookie of the Year (in-house for three years or less).
ACC DFW and The Lawbook will honor the finalists and announce the winners at the annual 2022 DFW Corporate Counsel Awards gala Thursday, Jan. 26, at the George W. Bush Institute, which is part of the presidential library.
The Lawbook received nearly 70 nominations for the 15 categories. ACC DFW and The Lawbook empaneled a group of independent judges – all of them cleared of any conflicts regarding the nominees and those making the nominations – to review each submission and determine up to three finalists.
In the category of Senior Counsel of the Year for a Large Legal Department,the judges decided that two lawyers at American Airlines who were nominated separately are the joint winners of this year’s award. They are American Airlines Deputy General Counsel Bruce Wark and American Airlines Managing Director Charlene Wandrisco.
Sidley management committee chair Yvette Ostolaza nominated Wandrisco for the honor. Wark was nominated by Yetter Coleman founding partner Paul Yetter, Kelly Hart partner Dee Kelly, O’Melveny partner Andrew Frackman and Latham partner Daniel Wall.
The judges selected two finalists for Senior Counsel of the Year for a Small Legal Department.The first finalist is City Electric Supply Associate General Counsel Denton Muse, who was nominated by City Electric Supply GC Meg Shockley. The second finalist is MB2 Dental Associate General Counsel Jonathan Koh, who was nominated by Haynes and Boone partners Sakina Foster and Albert Tan.
For Rookie of the Year,the judges named two finalists. One finalist is Forney General Counsel Chelsea Casiano, who was nominated by Kaplan Senior Counsel Emmanuel Nwakibu. The second finalist, Johnathan Jordan, is vice president of legal for OpTic Gaming.
The 2022 DFW Corporate Counsel Award finalists previously announced include:
Senior Counsel of the Year for a Midsized Legal Department (6-20 attorneys): The sole finalist – and thus the recipient of the award – is PepsiCo Foods North America Deputy General Counsel Adrienne Mosley.
Corporate Counsel Award for Pro Bono and Public Service: The judges voted to give the award jointly to Pioneer Natural Resources Senior Counsel Barry Thomas and Pioneer Executive Vice President of Corporate Operations Mark Berg, who is the former general counsel.
General Counsel of the Year for a Small Legal Department (1-5 lawyers): The sole finalist is Tuesday Morning General Counsel Jennyfer Gray.
General Counsel of the Year for a Large Legal Department (21+ lawyers): McAfee Chief Legal Officer Sarah Decker is the sole finalist and thus the recipient of the award.
General Counsel of the Year for a Midsized Legal Department (6-20 lawyers): HF Sinclair Corporation General Counsel Vaishali Bhatia is the winner of the award.
Business Litigation of the Year: ACC DFW and The Lawbook received several nominations for Business Litigation of the Year, which is one of three DFW Corporate Counsel Awards that recognizes both the in-house counsel at a business and the outside lawyers who scored extraordinary courtroom success. The judges selected two finalists for this honor. They are:
Keurig Dr Pepper Chief Legal Officer Anthony Shoemaker, Senior Counsel and head of litigation Stephen Cole and former GC Jim Baldwin, along with Gibson Dunn as outside counsel.
Ocwen Financial Corporation Assistant General Counsel Joel Israel, along with Womble Bond Dickinson as outside counsel.
The winner for this category will be announced Jan. 26 at the 2022 DFW Corporate Counsel Award ceremony.
M&A Transaction of the Year: Celanese Corporation General Counsel Lynne Puckett and the company’s outside counsel at Baker Botts.
The Texas Lawbook will announce the finalists for the remaining categories next week. The Lawbook plans to publish in-depth profiles of the finalists over the next six weeks.
For companies and law firms seeking to attend the 2022 DFW Corporate Counsel Awards on Jan. 26, please contact Texas Lawbook publisher Brooks Igo about purchasing a table or a sponsorship. All net revenues go to the Texas Lawbook Foundation, a nonprofit that employs full-time pro bono, public service and diversity writer Natalie Posgate. You may read more about Posgate’s efforts and the Texas Lawbook Foundation here.