Top legal talent from half of Australia’s ASX100 companies and other major corporations have joined forces in the newly established ACLA GC100, a forum for pooling knowledge & resources, influencing government policy and lobbying for regulatory change to business law.
The ACLA GC100 was set up by the Australian Corporate Lawyers Association (ACLA) as an independent body in the unique position of conveying both business and legal perspectives enabling the forum to advocate in a way no other body can.
"We are in the unique position of seeing and understanding the practical impact on Australian businesses of changes to laws, regulations and government policies. Despite best intentions, legislative change can have unintended consequences and flow-on costs to businesses. The aim is to have… collective wisdom in the hot seat, looking at things in a non-political way, from a practical standpoint". Says Chair of the ACLA GC100, Carmel Mulhern (Group Counsel for Telstra).
Ms Mulhern hopes the forum will not only give a voice to professionals & foster connections between legal counsel but, also act as a guiding and inspiring haven for younger, up and coming, in-house lawyers.
“As a growing profession there is much to be learned from each other. For example, in-house counsel often source inspiration from their peers on how to manage the function more effectively and demonstrate value internally. The thought leadership of the ACLA GC100 will assist all ACLA’s in-house counsel members from the new kid on the block to the heads of large legal teams.” Believes Ms Hyde.
The ACLA GC100 is yet to give any clear indication of their stance on policy issues and their order of priorities, but Ms Mulhern does confirm topics under consideration include corporate governance, cyber security and practice management.
“At the moment I don't see one particular issue as most important, but there is a desire to discuss among ourselves the impact so that we can respond when there are policy debates. We want to contribute to an independent legal voice in national business policy and debate”, says Ms Mulhern.
The GC100 intends to meet monthly in some Australian capital cities.