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Deputy Director, Legal

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Legal
Seattle, WA, USA
Posted on Friday, May 3, 2024

The Foundation

We are the largest nonprofit fighting poverty, disease, and inequity around the world. Founded on a simple premise: people everywhere, regardless of identity or circumstances, should have the chance to live healthy, productive lives. We believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve. We provide an exceptional benefits package to employees and their families which include comprehensive medical, dental, and vision coverage with no premiums, generous paid time off, paid family leave, foundation-paid retirement contribution, regional holidays, and opportunities to engage in several employee communities. As a workplace, we’re committed to creating an environment for you to thrive both personally and professionally.

The Team

"Guidance, Solutions, Integrity" describes the Legal division’s approach to providing responsive legal guidance supporting pursuit of the foundation’s mission and implementation of our programmatic and operational strategies! The Legal division delivers comprehensive legal services by providing efficient and reliable legal guidance, managing legal risk, and supporting the development of solutions to achieve the mission of the foundation and its affiliated entities.


The Legal division partners with our colleagues across the foundation to enable mission-driven work by maintaining an efficient, well-run global organization where employees can thrive and make their best contributions. Doing this well requires effective collaboration, strong alignment, and thoughtful planning across both operational and programmatic teams – as well as shared accountability for mitigating risk and optimizing the foundation’s operational resources.

Your Role

This role will focus primarily on management of legal support and legal team members assigned to enterprise operations at the foundation, including its regional offices, and its subsidiaries. This includes ethics and compliance, dispute resolution, eDiscovery, records management, entity registration for remote workers and offices, employee and guest safety, information security, events, travel visas, incident response, and facilities support globally. You will also be assigned additional projects based on business needs. Additional duties may include, for example, training, risk assessments, and associated processes. You will work cross-functionally and collaboratively with staff at all levels and be a knowledgeable, approachable, and persuasive advocate in support of these programs and requirements. You will supervise a team of experienced in-house counsel, paralegals, and/or legal assistants, as well as with outside counsel as needed.

What You’ll Do

  • Identify, mitigate and/or resolve areas of legal risk.

  • Provide guidance regarding applicable laws and foundation policies and processes.

  • Proactively engage with foundation divisions and teams to incorporate strategies and goals into legal advice and compliance strategies, as appropriate, that are calibrated appropriately for the foundation’s risk tolerance.

  • Identify legal issues across a wide range of subject areas, while specializing in the laws applicable to enterprise operations.

  • Manage a team of direct reports and serve in a consultative role to the Legal Leadership Team (LLT).

  • Manage and support the professional development of other legal professionals.

  • Understand and support the objectives of internal client groups, developing creative solutions, and resolve issues using the appropriate legal framework and in consideration of the foundation's values and risk philosophy.

  • Demonstrate generalist expertise to identify legal issues and collaborate, where appropriate, with other legal team members or foundation collaborators to lead the resolution of complex and strategic legal issues in compliance with applicable laws and regulations, and foundation policy and process.

  • As appropriate, demonstrate subject matter expertise and leadership on projects and activities where such expertise is required.

  • Quickly establish a relationship of trust with key partners and participate as a strategic advisor with regular touchpoints for communication.

  • Serve as the legal team’s liaison to and primary point of contact for our work for clients and partners.

  • Facilitate compliance with, and ensuring current knowledge regarding, applicable domestic and foreign legal and regulatory requirements in countries where the foundation maintains a legal presence or is otherwise active.

  • Collaborate with the LLT and broader legal team to ensure effective coverage, work allocation and communication regarding legal issues related to the foundation, all from a “one team” perspective; collaborate to ensure legal advice is consistent across divisions and teams.

  • Manage outside counsel as needed.

  • Support training and education of foundation staff on legal and compliance issues.

  • Some travel may be required.

Your Experience

Core Knowledge and Skills

  • 15-20 years of practice as: in-house counsel at a global organization a well-regarded law firm/government enforcement agency, or a combination of both.

  • Experience issuing and responding to records requests, subpoenas, and conducting records discovery across a range of repositories (e.g., Office 365, SharePoint, phones/text, websites), and reviewing and producing same in accordance with applicable laws.

  • Experience advising on both information security and physical security incidents.

  • Experience handling litigation and alternative dispute resolution.

  • Experience managing processes to improve efficiency.

  • Experience managing people, or a demonstrable commitment to the professional development of others, preferred.

  • Planning and project management skills and ability to communicate, meet and manage deadlines.

  • Excellent writing and editing skills.

  • Experience developing and delivering training and education materials in a concise and consistent manner.

  • Ability to work in a complex and fast-paced work environment.

  • Detail-oriented and self-motivated.

  • Flexibility to multi-task and agility to advise internal clients at all levels in the organization.

  • Ability to communicate difficult legal concepts clearly and non-legalistically to business clients orally and in writing.

  • Ability to prioritize work in context of the foundation’s risk tolerance framework.

  • Excellent collaboration skills in an environment that requires diplomacy, maturity and good judgment.

Decision-Making Authority

Understanding when a Managing Deputy Director may make a decision independently or when the issue needs to be escalated. The ability to confidently decide the application of the law and provide balanced advice consistent with the Foundation's risk tolerance and internal policies, as appropriate within the purview of the Managing Deputy Director’s job duties.

Internal & External Contacts

Collaborate with business colleagues, subject matter experts, and clients (internal - program staff and operations team members; external – foundation related entities, partners, and grantees); to provide support as well as implement best practice and consistencies across the organization and the field. Communication skills are critical in this role because of the varied contacts with differing cultural, educational, political, emotional, and otherwise unique experiences.

Education and Experience

JD and U.S. bar membership (required) and 15-20 years of practice as in-house counsel at a global organization or a well-regarded law firm/government enforcement agency, or a combination of both.

Must be able to legally work in the country where this position is located without visa sponsorship.

The typical salary range for this role is $313,000.00 to $485,300.00 USD. The exact offer will be determined by a variety of factors such as the candidate’s individual skills, qualifications, and experience relative to the requirements of the role. This role is based in Seattle, Washington.

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Hiring Requirements

As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.

Candidate Accommodations

If you require assistance due to a disability in the application or recruitment process, please submit a request here.

Inclusion Statement

We are dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We strive for a global and cultural workplace that supports ever greater diversity, equity, and inclusion — of voices, ideas, and approaches — and we support this diversity through all our employment practices.

All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve our mission will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to race, color, age, religion, pregnancy, sex, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and prior protected activity.