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SVP/General Counsel, Physicians Insurance, Seattle, WA

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Physicians Insurance seeks SVP/General Counsel to be a key member of their leadership team with 20 years’ experience in house with an insurance or regulated industry; or a senior associate/partner in a law firm with insurance-related client experience.

Physicians Insurance, a Mutual Company, has engaged Harris Legal Search on an exclusive basis to recruit an SVP/General Counsel.  This senior executive will be a key member of the leadership team, proactively provide legal advice on both strategic and operational decisions, and advise management and the Board of Directors of significant decisions, legislation, and regulations currently and potentially affecting the Company.  The position reports to the CEO and has one direct report, the Deputy General Counsel/Associate Vice President..

The successful candidate will act as a business legal advisor by understanding the organization’s strategic direction and integrating legal decisions into that framework, work closely with the management team to develop and implement strategic objectives, and add valuable legal counsel.


  • Manage the day-to-day activities of the legal department including compliance, contracts, employment matters, claims and risk management issues, insurance policy language, coverage issues, regulatory affairs and government relations.
  • Provide guidance to the Company officers and the Board of Directors on the performance of their duties.
  • Collaborate with the senior executives on M&A and other complex transactions.
  • Work closely with the CEO and Board to develop overall business/legal strategy and to address legal and regulatory issues faced by the company.
  • Identify and manage legal risk, including emerging issues.
  • Adopt policies and implement management systems that ensure the Company is in compliance with laws and regulations.
  • Supervise outside counsel in a cost-effective manner.
  • Manage the law department resources and budget.

The SVP/General Counsel will be pivotal in providing expertise to further the company’s strategic growth initiatives. This individual must possess team leadership and conflict resolution skills and must be committed to providing the highest quality of service to correspond with the Company’s operating philosophy.


  • Proactive leadership skills; this individual should be familiar with driving critical decisions and delivering results.
  • Good business judgment and ability to help Company take appropriate business risks.
  • The confidence and presence to work closely with the leadership team and Board members as a trusted advisor.
  • Superior oral and written communication skills and the ability to develop strong relationships across departments.
  • Strong organizational and problem solving skills.
  • Ability to create and reinforce Physicians Insurance corporate culture of “excellence” by demonstrating personal integrity, earning the trust and respect of others and communicating openly about challenging issues across functional areas.


The ideal candidate should possess the following preferred qualifications:

  • A corporate generalist with a minimum of 20 years’ experience in house with an insurance or regulated industry; or a senior associate/partner in a law firm with insurance-related client experience; medical professional liability experience is a plus.
  • Excellent law firm training and/or in house experience with respect to the functional role.
  • Demonstration of successful management skills at the executive level.
  • A top 25-law school and graduation rank in the top 25% of the law school class.
  • Member of State Bar in good standing.


Physicians Insurance is dedicated to high quality service and wanting to “do the right thing” defines the organization.  Employees take great pride in their work and particularly enjoy the opportunities to make a difference for insured’s and their patients.  Today, Physicians Insurance serves more than 8,000 members in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming, and provides risk-management consulting, continuing medical education, and claims administration services. The company has grown to be the largest insurer of physicians in Washington State and is rated A- (Excellent) by A.M. Best Company.

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