Chief Legal Officer (Fiduciary/In-House General Counsel)
AZ Public Safety Personnel Retirement System
June 27, 2018
Full Time - Experienced
Attorney, Compliance, Government
Under the policy direction of PSPRS Board of Trustees and the administrative direction of the Plan Administrator, and the Plan Deputy Administrator, the Chief Legal Officer will provide legal counsel to the Administrator and the Board of Trustees relating, but not limited, to ethics, conflicts of interest, ex parte rules, open meeting law, and public records requests; provide advisory support to the Administrator, the Board of Trustees, and PSPRS staff regarding PSPRS matters and makes recommendations on policy, regulatory, and legal matters. Assists Administrator and Board of Trustees in drafting legislation, preparing legal opinions, conducting legal research, and complying with public records requests. Serves as Ethics Officer to the Administrator and Board of Trustees. Provides legal guidance for the benefit of the Plans’ members and local boards, as well as committees of the Board of Trustees. Special projects may be assigned. This position will manage the PSPRS paralegal and external legal counsel.
Essential Functions of the Chief Legal Officer may include, but not be limited to:
Serving as chief legal advisor to the Board of Trustees, all Board sub-committees, Administrator and Deputy Administrator providing legal advice on a wide variety of matters including but not limited to, the legal aspects of the interpretation of laws, fiduciary duties, and corporate and internal board governance.
Monitoring the work and billings for legal services performed by all external law firms that the System may utilize from time-to-time to assure that charges are not excessive but rather are reasonable and consistent with the fee provisions of their contractual relationships with the System.
As appropriate, providing input with respect to the selection of outside counsel for specific assignments and monitors external counsel activities to assure that the interests of the System are protected and secured.
Preparing contracts, side letters, memoranda, briefs, opinions, rules, policies, procedures, correspondence, NDA’s or other materials as may be needed with respect to System operational activity at the direction of the Administrator or the Deputy Administrator, and assures compliance with the fiduciary duties of the Board of Trustees, the Administrator, and the Deputy Administrator.
Participating in the meetings of the Board of Trustees, the Operations Governance Committee, and any other Board committees as may be organized from time-to-time.
Representing PSPRS in meetings and negotiations with other attorneys and external parties, including executive and legislative branches of state government, especially with respect to the interests of the members and beneficiaries of the System.
Advising the Board of Trustees, Staff and Plans about their legal rights and obligations, including their duties under the Public Records and Open Meeting Laws
Representing the Board of Trustees and Plans in all litigation
Preparing legal opinions for the benefit of the Board of Trustees, Staff, and Plans
Preparing third party legal opinions for the benefit of the Plans’ creditors or vendors
Preparing drafts of proposed legislation for the benefit of the Plans.
Lobbying and testifying before legislative committees in connection with laws affecting the Plans
Providing legal guidance for the benefit of the Plans’ members and local boards as well as committees of the Board of Trustees
Negotiating and preparing joinder agreements and accompanying resolutions for both tribal and non-tribal employers
Preparing, updating and/or providing guidance regarding the Plans’ personnel manual, governance policies, code of ethics, Charters and other official rules and policies
Conducting internal investigations requested by the Board of Trustees, the Administrator or the Compliance Office and when appropriate providing recommendations regarding same
Preparing legal education materials for Board of Trustees, Staff and local boards
When requested and authorized by the Administrator, arbitrating or mediating disputes among Plans, Staff, constituents and/or local boards
Supervising paralegals and support staff.
Preparing responses to public information requests.
Performing related work as assigned.
State and Federal statutes relating to the governance and operational activity of the System and statutes imposing duties on the Board of Trustees, the Administrator, and the Deputy Administrator in their capacities as fiduciaries.
Laws governing the conduct of public bodies including State of Arizona Open Meeting Laws and public records requirements.
Best practices in the negotiation and development of contracts and other legal documents.
The statutory structure that authorizes and supports the creation and operations of public retirement systems.
Skill and Experience in:
Analyzing difficult and complex legal problems.
Composing, editing and proofreading a variety of complex legal correspondence, contracts, reports and opinions.
Applying legal principles and precedents to particular sets of facts.
Effectively mediating and resolving conflicts and representing a public entity in hearings and other public forums.
Planning, organizing and prioritizing work assignments and tasks to manage high-volume workload in a fast-paced and changing environment.
Work effectively under pressure and sensitive conditions.
Provide expert counsel to, and gain and maintain the confidence of, the PSPRS Board of Trustees, Administrator, Deputy Administrator and staff and consultants retained by the Board of Trustees.
Accept direction from the Administrator and the Deputy Administrator as to the business objectives that they are seeking to achieve.
Present statements of fact, law and argument clearly, logically and effectively in written and oral form.
Establish and maintain effective working relationships with internal and external contacts including, but not limited to, government executives, members of the legal profession, and members and staff of legislative and regulatory bodies.
Direct and manage staff.
Monitor and evaluate the work of external legal counsel.
Juris Doctorate (JD) from an accredited law school. Possession of, and ability to maintain, a current, valid license to practice law in the State of Arizona to be obtained within eighteen months of employment. Become within eighteen months a member in good standing of the State Bar of Arizona. Seven years extensive experience in the practice of law as a Fiduciary counsel, preferably in a public retirement system environment. Five years experience providing advice and counsel to governmental boards or commissions or public agencies.
About AZ Public Safety Personnel Retirement System
The Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System (PSPRS), located in Phoenix, manages three retirement plans and serves 59,000 active and retired public safety, correctional facility personnel (CORP), judges and elected officials (EORP) and more than 250 employers groups (municipalities, agencies and districts) throughout the state.
The PSPRS Administrative Office ensures that plan provisions as set in statute are followed consistently and accurately.
The system is governed by a nine-member Board of Trustees, which is entrusted with the fiduciary responsibility to serve its members and best protect the financial health of PSPRS, CORP and EORP.