Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) is looking for an Executive
Legal Assistant/Paralegal to join its Office of General Counsel.
This office provides legal advice and representation to RISD’s
trustees, officers, employees, and student leaders while acting on
the College’s behalf. Services include advice and counsel on all
matters having legal significance for the College, coordination of
outside counsel handling lawsuits and specialized matters,
assistance with policy development, review of major contracts, and
preventive law workshops and educational programs.
The Executive Legal Assistant/Paralegal provides executive-level
administrative and paralegal support to the Office of the General
Counsel (OGC) on a wide range of complex, confidential, and
politically sensitive duties, special projects, and events. This
position independently examines and evaluates potential
possibilities and decides course of action based on examination.
The incumbent in this position works closely with and represents
the OGC as requested and, with a keen understanding of
institutional priorities and the ability to access risk, advances,
and coordinates initiatives within the OGC and helps to connect the
work of the OGC with other offices across campus. This position
makes recommendations on emerging issues and alerts the General
Counsel to sensitive matters requiring response, attention, or
The Executive Legal Assistant/Paralegal manages and coordinates the
GC’s and Associate General Counsel’s (AGC’s) dynamic calendar and
travel logistics, recording and following up on action items that
result. This position responds to and triages all phone, e-mail,
and in-person inquiries and ensures that all items of significance
are appropriately sequenced, reported, routed, delegated, and
answered in a timely and comprehensive manner. It also creates and
implements systems, structures, and practices for and ensures legal
correspondence and important documents are archived within
guidelines. The person in this position oversees the day-to-day
operations of the office, including, but not limited to tracking
incoming and outgoing mail, managing office supplies and inventory,
overseeing monthly credit card reconciliation, filing, planning,
and executing logistics for a wide variety of meetings and projects
in the OGC office.
- Manages and coordinates assigned legal projects, which are
often confidential and mission critical in nature, and significant
in size, scope and complexity. Develops and maintains processes
necessary to organize, prioritize and track activities, projects,
and tasks of the OGC. Supports the OGC on an on-going basis to
increase the efficiency and efficacy of resolution and completion
of their duties, assignments, and responsibilities. Independently
identifies and triages issues and tasks needing resolution,
bringing such issues to the attention of the GC or the AGC.
- Conducts research at the local, state, and federal level and
drafts briefings, executive summaries, correspondence, documents,
materials and presentations utilizing various sources, including
on-line resources. Analyzes information gathered and composes
documents in order to facilitate clear, concise, and timely
responses to inquires received. Summarizes and communicates
research verbally and in writing.
- Designs and prepares ad-hoc and standard reports,
University-wide policy statements and various tables, charts, and
graphs, the majority of which are confidential in nature, impact
the University, and inform strategic decisions. Reviews and
responds to correspondence, reports, and requests for clarity of
subject matter, ensures proper formatting and that the overall
standards of the OGC are maintained. Proofreads documents for
grammatical and typographical errors, and edits material for
- Utilizes system software (i.e. PowerPoint) and other RISD tools
and templates to create presentations and proposals for
- Screens and processes all incoming correspondence.
Independently prepares and, as appropriate, creates and issues a
wide variety of correspondence, on behalf of the OGC, or determines
and refers to appropriate employee for response. Gathers, distills
and attaches appropriate background material to correspondence for
- Provides executive administrative and paralegal support to the
OGC, which includes dealing with and resolving administrative
problems and inquiries. With an understanding of institutional
priorities and the ability to balance and protect the GC’s and
AGC’s time and control access as appropriate, manages the OGC
schedules/calendars. Independently initiates or responds to
requested appointments and places those appointments on the GC's
and Associate GC’s calendar, prioritizing frequently conflicting
high-level events on a daily basis.
- Coordinates and sets-up various group and committee meetings
which require contacting the offices of various administrators,
within all levels of the organization, to determine availability of
time for all those requested to attend. Reserves meeting room,
prepares agenda, and notifies all parties of date, place, and time
of meeting and the issues to be discussed. Briefs the GC and the
AGC on meetings and provides background materials on items to be
- Creates, coordinates, and maintains a contract database and
contract administration for the OGC. Develops and/or refines a
repository for RISD active and inactive contracts. Ensures
compliance with RISDs Records Retention Schedule.
- Initiates and completes requests and approvals and tracks
status of requests of documents.
- Maintains key corporate governance and compliance documents and
- Provides notary assistance as requested.
- Interacts with all the Office of General Counsel and RISD
employees in a professional manner.
- Files documents and records (electronic and hard copy)
according to established filing systems.
- Creates reimbursement documentation and processes office supply
orders and billing with Workday.
- Makes departmental travel arrangements; creates and processes
travel reimbursement requests for payment.
- Creates briefing reports for attorneys on corporate governance
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent combination of education and
- Must have specialized skills and knowledge pertaining to the
legal profession, including In-depth knowledge of legal documents
- Three (3) years of related and progressively responsible or
expansive legal assistant work experience which must
include/support of an executive level position (scheduling, travel,
etc.); confidential office protocol, office management skills,
ability to compose and edit correspondence and other documents,
knowledge of computer and use of word processing, spread sheet and
- Must have excellent organizational and time management skills,
be able to pay strong attention to details and initiate and follow
through on tasks with minimal guidance, and ability to be a valid
notary public in state of RI.
- Must be able to independently evaluate and analyze
issues/options and determine best course of action based on
- Ability to interpret and prioritize request for information and
follow up as needed.
- Must establish strong rapport and effective working
relationships with diverse populations, must communicate
professionally, confidentially, and courteously with during
frequent contact with Senior Leadership, and their office personnel
as well as other college personnel as a whole, while gathering
and/or providing information on confidential and/or sensitive
issues, relaying assignment and/or deadlines, etc.
35 hours/week; 12 months/year
Full-Time; Regular, Exempt.
Documents Needed to Apply
Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please upload
all required documents.
- Resume (required)
- Cover Letter (required)
The successful candidate will be required to meet our
pre-employment background screening requirements.
RISD recognizes diversity and inclusivity as fundamental to its
learning community and integral to an art and design education. We
welcome candidates whose experience has prepared them to contribute
to our commitment to diversity and excellence. RISD is an Equal
Opportunity Employer. Employment decisions are made without regard
to race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, disability,
veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression,
genetics, or any other protected characteristic as established by
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