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Vice President and General Counsel

Below you will find the details for the position including any supplementary documentation and questions you should review before applying for the opening.  To apply for the position, please click the Apply for this Job link/button.

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Please see Special Instructions for more details.

The search firm Major, Lindsey and Africa is assisting the University with this search. To apply, please contact Ms. Melba Hughes ( or Ms. Ilene Rosh ( directly. All applications submitted to the University’s HR website will be forwarded to MLA Global.

Posting Details

Requisition Information

Open Date 05/31/2017
Close Date

Classification Information

Classification Title Vice President and General Counsel
Division Provost's Office
Department Executive Offices
FLSA Status Exempt (Overtime exemption status is determined at the time of hire based on the rate of pay)
Career/Pay Band 4C
Work Schedule Full Year
If Other, specify months
Full Time vs Part Time Full Time
Appointment Regular
If Term, specify number of years
Primary Function

The search firm Major, Lindsey and Africa is assisting the University with this search. To apply, please contact Ms. Melba Hughes ( or Ms. Ilene Rosh ( directly. All applications submitted to the University’s HR website will be forwarded to MLA Global. The Vice President and General Counsel is responsible for all legal matters of the University, and provides timely, relevant and solution-oriented legal advice on a strikingly broad range of complex legal matters. The successful candidate must demonstrate sound judgment, substantive in-depth legal knowledge, and an understanding of higher education and complex business transactions. Areas of practice include employment, contracts, not-for-profit corporations, governance, compliance, athletics, student affairs, Title IX, FERPA, Clery, VAWA, litigation, risk management, intellectual property, real property, construction, charitable giving, bond financing, and community relations.

As an officer of the University, the Vice President and General Counsel is a member of the Vice-Chancellor’s (President’s) Cabinet and reports to the Vice-Chancellor. The General Counsel has a strong working relationship with the Board of Regents and maintains a high level of communication with Board members.

Typical Duties & Responsibilities

Responsibilities of the Vice President and General Counsel currently include:
• Providing counsel to the Vice-Chancellor/President, Provost, Vice Presidents, other members of management, Board of Regents, and Board of Trustees;
• Developing policy documents involving legal and governance issues;
• Providing advice on a broad range of matters and in compliance with federal, state and municipal laws;
• Reviewing and preparing contracts;
• Selecting and overseeing external counsel on various matters, including litigation;
• Supporting faculty and staff in developing or modifying practices and procedures to conform with legal requirements and reduce risk;
• Overseeing the Sewanee Police Department and Office of Leases and Community Relations;
• Ensuring a high level of confidentiality for sensitive information;
• Ensuring compliance with the University’s Charter, Constitution, and Ordinances.

Judgment Required Performance of the essential duties of this position is dependent upon independent ingenuity and developmental efforts.
Budgetary Responsibility Directly prepares budget for program and has full responsibility for planning, forecasting, approval, and balancing budget.
Machines & Equipment Used

Job Specifications/Position Qualifications (minimum)


Graduate of an ABA-accredited law school

Member of the Tennessee Bar or a member of the bar in good standing of another jurisdiction who is eligible to register under Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 7, Article X


Minimum of 15 years of diversified legal experience working as an attorney for a college or university or in an established higher education practice at a top law firm

A commitment to higher education and an understanding of the legal issues faced by universities

Job Related Skills

• Demonstrated leadership skills
• Capacity to be a trusted advisor to the Vice-Chancellor/President, senior management and the Board of Regents
• Analytical skills, including complex problem solving
• Solutions oriented
• Strong communication skills, both written and oral
• Ability to respond effectively to competing priorities
• Outstanding interpersonal skills, including the ability to work effectively with others and to foster a climate of goodwill and cooperation
• Self-motivation and self-starter with the ability to anticipate needs
• Personal and professional integrity, tact, discretion, and diplomacy
• Administrative and organizational skills, including the ability to handle details at every level


Personal Interaction/Communications

Student Contact



daily; interacting with members of Executive Staff as a group & as individuals discussing issues and resolving problems


frequent; interacting with and responding to inquiries from board members, vendors, government reps, other schools, parents, attorneys, insurers, etc.

Supervisory Responsibility

Supervision Received This position works with considerable independence and self-direction. Only general direction and scope of the work to be accomplished are discussed with supervisor.
Positions Directly Supervised

Executive Office Administrative Assistant

Positions Indirectly Supervised

Executive Office Coordinator

Confidential Information

Confidential Information

Contracts, legal documents, wages, salaries, employment records, disciplinary/grievance procedures, organizational plans, financial statements

Work Environment

Working Environment

Normal office environment

University Employment Information

University Information

The University of the South comprises a well-regarded College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and a distinguished School of Theology. It is an institution of the Episcopal Church that welcomes individuals of all backgrounds. The University is located on a striking, 13,000-acre campus on Tennessee’s Cumberland Plateau.

EEO Statement

The University of the South is an equal opportunity educational institution that is committed to creating and maintaining a diverse and inclusive campus environment.

Employment Prescreening Eligibility for employment is contingent upon successful prescreening

Supplemental Questions

Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).

Documents Needed to Apply

Required Documents
  1. Resume
  2. Cover Letter
Optional Documents