Four years before the Corporate Legal Operations Consortium was founded and nine years before the Association of Corporate Counsel created a legal operations arm, Joanne Irwin was asked to help find a contract management system.

It was 2006, and Irwin was a procurement compliance manager at office supplies retailer Staples Inc. based in Framingham, Massachusetts. Working on the contract management system made the legal department at Staples realize it needed someone to manage new systems that were being put in place, and this broadened her role.

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