The University Legal Counsel manages all legal matters for the University and is also responsible for overseeing the Associate Legal Counsel. This position reports for employment purposes to the Vice President of University Operations and Finance but also has direct reporting responsibilities to the President and Board of Trustees.
Responsible for managing all legal matters for the University.
Provide a high level of professional legal service by representing and advising the University on a broad range of legal and administrative matters.
Assumes oversight responsibility for ensuring that the University conducts its business in compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
Provides advice to key leaders and administrators on legal matters affecting the University, including advising the Trustees on their legal duties to the corporation.
Provides input and counsel to university administration on federal and state legislation and its impact on Biola and its religious freedom.
Serves as a key resource to the university leadership on the legal implications of new legislation and regulations, religious freedom and risk management, in addition to partnering with University Communications and Marketing on government affairs strategies.
Serves as a legal advisor for employee and labor relations matters including advice for faculty appointments and review, tenure/promotion issues involving non-renewal or potential termination of faculty, review and assessment of intellectual property/technology transfer policies affecting faculty work (including patent and copyright issues), discrimination and harassment complaints, compliance with American with Disabilities Act and other anti-discrimination laws as well as compliance with state and federal wage, overtime, and employee benefit laws.
Serves as chair of the University’s Religious Freedom Task Force and advises the president and board on litigation, legislative and communication strategies on religious freedom.
Serves as legal advisor for student affairs related to student conduct, student disciplinary proceedings, institutional responses to student health and safety issues, student records, and student organizational activities.
Serves as legal advisor for the university for the areas of Campus Safety / Clery Act and Title IX matters.
Serves as the legal spokesperson to the media, when deemed necessary.
Works collaboratively with key leaders to develop and implement university policies to make sure they are legally defensible.
Supervise outside counsel and others representing the University in litigation or claims.
Play an active role in the university’s Emergency Response Team.
Secures specialized legal counsel and/or delegates to appropriate counsel in such areas as:
Perform other duties as assigned by the Board of Trustees, CEO or COO.
Other Duties / Functions
Designs and delivers appropriate compliance training / education to University community areas.
Drafts, negotiates and reviews contracts.
Oversees intellectual property and trademark matters for the university.
Serves as a legal advisor to the Office of Advancement in reviewing trust and estate matters.
Ten years of experience in the practice of law preferably with at least five years of management experience in a legal department or firm. It is highly desirable that the candidate has significant and broad experience with higher education legal issues.
Preferred experience in legal issues of higher education and significant experience in the area of employment law.
General familiarity with the areas of non-profit, real estate, taxation and constitutional law.
Has a strong understanding of religious freedom matters, especially as they relate to faith-based higher education.
Demonstrate superb judgement, critical thinking and reasoning skills with a reputation for discretion, integrity, and sensitivity to Christ-centered service and ethics.
Demonstrate a positive “can-do” attitude characterized by solving problems objectively with humble confidence.
This position requires excellent oral and written communication skills.
Excellent interpersonal skills
Strong legal research abilities.
Strong analytical, advocacy and problem-solving skills.
Ability to work collegially in a diverse and complex environment. This position interacts regularly with senior level administration and trustees.
Ability to create, compose, and edit legal opinions and other written materials
Ability to investigate and analyze information and draw conclusions
Ability to draft legal documents, such as legal responses, affidavits, position statements, and briefs.
Ability to represent University officials in litigation, mediation, arbitration, or administration proceedings or coordinate outside counsel to do so.
Ability to develop and implement legal strategies and solutions
About Biola University
Biola University's Doctrinal Statement remains the foundational document regarding the theological position of the University. Biola's position from its inception has been and remains Christian, Protestant and theologically conservative. Prospective and existing employees must affirm that their personal theological beliefs are in agreement with the Biola Doctrinal Statement. A prospective or an existing employee's church affiliation will be considered in determining his or her understanding of and compliance with Biola's theological position.
All positions at Biola University require applicants to pass a criminal background check as a condition of employment. This includes a review of any pending charges or convictions. Once a conditional offer of employment is extended, Biola utilizes the services of HireRight, a third-party agency, to conduct a criminal background check. Biola also reserves the right to expand the search if applicable for the position (e.g., a Department of Transportation search for positions that require driving).