Corporate Counsel – Litigation and Employment

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Legal / Compliance
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COMPANY DESCRIPTION

The Wine Group is one of the leaders in the wine industry.  As a privately held, management-owned company with 12 wineries in California, New York, and Australia, we strive to win with exceptional people who share our values.  We produce many well-known brands including Franzia, Almaden, Cupcake, Chloe, Flip Flop, 7 Deadly Zins, Ava Grace, Concannon, Benziger and Imagery.  We are a successful company looking to employ talented individuals on our team who are self-motivated, positive and energetic.  If this sounds like you, we encourage you to apply!

JOB SUMMARY

Do you like wine?  Then come join The Wine Group, one of the world’s largest international manufacturers of alcoholic beverage products, with vineyards, wineries and production operations throughout California, as well as in New York and Australia.  We are expanding our Legal Department and seek an engaging, experienced attorney with at least 6 years of legal experience to work on a variety of legal and regulatory matters, with a focus on labor and employment matters, as well as litigation.  The ideal candidate is excited to learn new areas of the law and continuously challenge him/herself to add value to the company in a cost-conscious manner. 

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS

  • Take primary responsibility for all Labor and Employment legal matters including, but not limited to advising on disability and leave of absence issues, updating company policies and the employee handbook and  addressing all union matters (negotiation of collective bargaining agreements, resolution of grievances and training on compliance with applicable statutory and contract requirements);
  • Lead all potential and active litigation matters company-wide, including, but not limited to employment-related litigation matters, union grievances and arbitrations, contract disputes and product liability concerns, often, but not always with external counsel;
  • Provide business leaders with preventive, proactive legal advice on a broad range of litigation and employment practice topics;
  • Work with the other members of the Legal department to align on best practices and then develop and deliver training to our internal clients to teach those best practices;
  • Collaborate with internal clients to ensure their knowledge of and compliance with company policies;
  • Keep informed of new laws, regulations, and industry trends that could affect the company and proactively identify company risks and cost-conscious mitigating actions; and
  • Perform your work at one of The Wine Group’s wineries or offices daily.

OTHER FUNCTIONS

  • Act as the primary legal liaison for the Human Resources department advising on labor and employment matters;
  • In connection with the company’s Compliance department, research and provide legal advice on diverse and complex federal, state and local laws, rules and regulations that affect the manufacturing, distribution and sale of alcoholic beverage products both domestically and internationally;
  • Research and advise on a variety of other legal and business matters as they arise, including, but not limited to, antitrust and competition, contract drafting and negotiation, environmental, privacy, real estate;
  • Support and model all company values, policies and procedures; and
  • Perform other duties as requested by the Chief Legal & Human Resources Officer.

This job description reflects management’s assessment of general functions; it does not restrict the tasks that may be assigned.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • JD from a top-ranked law school required;
  • 6+ years of experience as a licensed attorney at a top-tier law firm required; additional in-house experience preferred, but not required;
  • Must be a current, “Active” member in good standing of the California Bar;
  • Extensive experience required advising on labor and employment matters, especially with respect to unions, wage and hour matters, leaves of absence and litigation;
  • Must have expert-level knowledge of federal and California state employment laws and regulations (including ADA, ADEA, FMLA, CFRA, FLSA, FEHA, etc.);
  • Experience managing defense of pending and threatened litigation (employment-related and otherwise) in federal and California state courts, as well as defending regulatory inquiries and investigations;
  • Tremendous attention to detail and outstanding negotiation skills required;
  • Experience advising clients on and managing numerous matters on tight deadlines with minimal, if any, supervision required;
  • Able to quickly read, fully comprehend, and implement requirements of laws, regulations, and technical documents independently;
  • Must be exceptional at communicating effectively in writing and verbally, as well as in presenting to groups in a compelling, persuasive and entertaining manner;
  • Willing and able to effectively and efficiently manage numerous high-priority matters simultaneously, and work extended hours when needed; and
  • Skilled in the use of the Microsoft Office suite of products at least at an intermediate level.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS

  • Primary work will take place in an office environment, however employee must be able to travel to and traverse The Wine Group’s vineyards, wineries and other facilities from time to time.

The Wine Group is an equal opportunity employer. Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status.

 

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