Ivan Fong, LCLD Member and General Counsel of 3M Company, recently hosted the inaugural Fellows Regional Roundtable, a forum he initiated in collaboration with Fellows Alumni that will roll out nationally in early 2015.
For this pilot Roundtable, Fong welcomed 10 local Fellows Alumni to the 3M headquarters in Saint Paul, Minnesota for an informal, two-hour discussion over lunch about the qualities of leadership and “covering”—the tendency of individuals to over-manage or downplay their differences from others at work.
“The Roundtable was a terrific experience,” said Fong. “I got to know a group of extremely talented ‘rising stars’ in the Twin Cities legal community. And for them, it was a way to get to know me and discuss top-of-mind topics such as how to be a more effective leader and how to develop one's career. For all of us, it was a chance to learn from each other.”
The idea for this new initiative originated at the 2014 LCLD Leadership Summit, where Fong expressed his desire to get involved with the local Twin Cities Fellows. Also in attendance, Lica Tomizuka, a 2013 Fellow and Partner at Faegre Baker Daniels LLP, and Cassandra Headrick, 2012 Fellow and Executive Counsel at The Travelers Companies, spoke with Fong about his interest and worked with him to organize this first Regional Roundtable.
“Our original goal was to create a forum for Fellows Alumni to engage with a GC or MP on an intimate level about a specific topic that everyone might be interested in,” Tomizuka said.
“It was an incredible opportunity to interact directly with a GC here in town,” said Christine Ruppert, a 2012 Fellow and Assistant General Counsel, Labor & Employment at Honeywell International, Inc. “Ivan generously shared with us personal recollections of situations where he faced certain challenges in his career. Perhaps more importantly, he also shared strategies for handling such situations, including the importance of continuing to be true to one’s own life experiences.”
“It was so nice to meet with Ivan and other Fellows Alumni in an intimate group setting,” said Jaimala Pai, a 2012 Fellow and Senior Associate General Counsel at UnitedHealthcare. “It was extremely valuable to hear him talk about the qualities of top talent and to hear his definition of executive presence.”
Building on the success of this inaugural event, the LCLD Fellows Alumni Regional Committee plans to replicate the Roundtable in a series of events this year. The 2015 Regional Roundtables will be open to current year Fellows in addition to Fellows Alumni and will take place in the following cities:
- Atlanta, GA
- Chicago, IL
- Dallas, TX
- Houston, TX
- Indianapolis, IN
- Los Angeles, CA
- Miami, FL
- Minneapolis, MN
- Nashville, TN
- New York, NY
- Philadelphia, PA
- San Francisco, CA
- Washington, DC
“These Regional Roundtables will provide the opportunity for Fellows from all classes to engage in candid conversations about their own professional experiences and obtain advice on how to navigate the terrain of their legal careers,” said Fellows Alumni Regional Committee member Danielle Rawls, a 2012 Fellow and Corporate Attorney/Litigation at Green Tree Servicing LLC.
The host of the first Roundtable, Ivan Fong, believes in the value of such experiences. “In our increasingly busy and networked world, it’s critically important to invest the scarce time we have to pause, reflect on larger issues, and make vital human connections.”
If you're an LCLD Member who is interested in hosting a 2015 Regional Roundtable, please email LCLD Fellows Alumni Regional Committee Chair Paula Aguila, a 2013 Fellow and attorney at Rivero Mestre LLP, for more information.