ALM Properties, Inc.
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Susan Rule Sandler
Six months after Herbalife International, Inc., was sold ¿ its legal department sent home with severance packages ¿ the company's associate general counsel, Susan Rule Sandler, has sunk her teeth into a new in-house job: general counsel of Western Dental Services, Inc., the largest staff model dental group in California.
The timing of the job offer couldn't have been better. Upon leaving Herbalife, Sandler had decided to take a break from working. "It was the first time in my career that I had taken any time off," Sandler says. She moved. She remarried. She got her kids settled into new schools. And just when she started thinking about looking for work, she got a phone call from Western Dental's CEO, Samuel Gruenbaum. One of Sandler's friends had sent the lawyer's resume to him.
In some ways, the job at Western Dental was a natural next step for the 38-year-old Sandler. She had been advising Herbalife on regulatory and litigation issues ¿ also crucial areas for Western Dental ¿ ever since she was their outside counsel, at Morrison & Foerster.
In other respects, however, her learning curve has been steep. "There's all the technical language that gets thrown around," says Sandler, like "lingual nerve case" and "parasthesia."
So far, Sandler has been learning on the fly. But even though she handles the company's regulatory, insurance, and transactional issues, as well as its litigation, it doesn't seem like Sandler has bitten off any more than she can chew.