Law firms including Latham & Watkins LLP, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC are responsible for helping mint the largest proportion of general counsels at U.S.-listed companies.
According to recent study, 76% of GCs, no surprise, come from law firms. Latham, Skadden and Wilson Sonsini are most frequently listed in company backgrounds of the approximately 2,900 general counsels identified in the study through Oct. 25.
The only non-law firms that produce a high number of GCs — in this case, 30 or more — are the Securities and Exchange Commission, the U.S. Department of Justice and IBM Corp. (IBM).
Additionally, BoardEx data showed that 28% of corporate GCs are women, and that the average age of someone holding the position is 53.4 years old. It’s also not a position held by younger lawyers, as none of the companies surveyed had GCs under 35 and only 4% had GCs aged between 36 and 40.
However, it’s not necessarily a position dominated by individuals past retirement age, as only 1% of GCs are above the age of 71.
Further, there are two clear leaders in GC-producing educational institutions — the University of California followed by Harvard Law School, which each produced more than 200 GCs at the companies surveyed.
Other schools that produced more than 100 currently working GCs include the University of Michigan, Georgetown Law School, the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Texas.