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CorpCounsel.com has just learned that Joseph West, associate general counsel for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., is slated to leave his post at the retail behemoth to become president and CEO of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, effective September 12. West presently manages Wal-Mart’s outside counsel, which includes some 600 law firms. Before arriving at the Arkansas-based company in 2007, West served as assistant general counsel for litigation and senior counsel for litigation at Entergy Corp. from 1999 to 2007. He studied law at Tulane University, and, upon graduation, worked in trial practice in New Orleans from 1986 to 1999. “Joe brings a broad range of experience to this position as an accomplished attorney and the knowledge of in-house and outside counsel challenges, as well as the workings of legal associations and nonprofit organizations,” said MCCA board chair and Microsoft corporate vice president and deputy general counsel Mary E. Snapp in a press release. “He also brings extensive governmental, corporate, and legal perspectives. The Board and I are excited about this new stage in MCCA’s development and look forward to working with him. Under Joe’s leadership, we expect MCCA programs and initiatives to grow and continue to advance a more diverse and inclusive legal profession.” Based in Washington, D.C., MCCA promotes the hiring, retention, and promotion of diverse attorneys within legal departments and among outside counsel. West fills the position left open by Veta T. Richardson, who became president and CEO of the Association of Corporate Counsel in July. West has received a variety of honors for diversity and inclusion efforts. According to the announcement: Mr. West was named the ‘Inside Counsel of the Year’ in 2011 by the National Bar Association, Commercial Law Section for making significant contributions to the advancement of women and minority lawyers nationwide. In 2010, ABA President Steve Zack appointed West to the Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession and he has served as the co-chair of the ABA Minority Counsel Program and co-chair of the ABA Spirit of Excellence Award. In 2009, West was named the ‘Outstanding Advisory Council Member’ by NAMWOLF for his efforts to provide quality opportunities for women and minority attorneys in minority-owned firms.

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